Fights: to draw or not to draw.
This is a discussion on Fights: to draw or not to draw. within the Carry & Defensive Scenarios forums, part of the Defensive Carry Discussions category; Somebody made what I though was an interesting statement on another thread that I wanted to get some feedback about :
If the person has ...
August 7th, 2007 04:04 PM
Fights: to draw or not to draw.
Somebody made what I though was an interesting statement on another thread that I wanted to get some feedback about:
I’ll admit..I didn’t’ grow up fighting. Frankly I’ve never even seen a particularly brutal fight…mostly just a couple of scuffles back in high school. However, I firmly believe that somebody attacking me with their bare hands could easily kill or do serious bodily harm to me in a fight. (Obviously I’d have to believe that the attacker in question is physically capable of doing me serious injury but for arguments sake I’m talking about just your average person of regular size and physical ability.)
If the person has no way of grievously harming you (I don’t consider a fight grievously harming you, painful, yes, but you’ll live) then I say your gun has no business being displayed or used.
Maybe part of my view is that in my world people don’t have “casual fights”. I don’t go places where people get drunk and have shoving matches or take a swing at each other over some stupid issue. If I was ever in a place where somebody was obviously angry enough to attack me physically armed or unarmed then to me that’s enough: the gun’s coming up and I would be willing to fire if necessary.
Is that an unreasonable rule of thumb?
"Friend, I would not harm thee for all the world, but thou art standing where I am about to shoot."--Unknown Quaker
August 7th, 2007 04:32 PM
Two part answer- yes and no. Given your normal Personal Risk Assessment, if someone rushes out of the bushes at you, you probably need to be in fear for your life.
I don't "believe"in casual fights. I will apologize, backpeddle, etc., etc., to a degree that if homie pursues a fight, I know he's intent on bodily harm for fun's sake.
August 7th, 2007 04:47 PM
Re: Fights: to draw or not to draw.
Not unreasonable at all - the originally quoted poster's statement is definitely erroneous. The human body has too many vulnerable points that if hit (intentionally or otherwise) can incapacitate it - sometimes only briefly, other times permanently.
Originally Posted by Serenity
At age fifteen, pumped way too full of hormones, I got involved in a fight with a larger, much more athletic classmate. I had virtually no martial arts training, but still managed to take him out quickly. We squared off on the beach, whereupon I kicked sand in his face with my left foot, his hands went up, so I kicked to the solar-plexus with my right foot - knocking the wind completely out of him. He bent over double, right into a guillotine choke, and was unconscious in about ten seconds.
Years later, in my 30's, I was first in line at work to clock out at end of shift. The worker behind me started jostling me, then making rude comments when I turned around to face him. Flash-anger took over, and I back-fisted him to the temple with my left (weak) hand. There was no wind-up or torque behind the blow, just a flick strike. Nevertheless, his eyes rolled up into his head, his knees buckled, and he fell. Would have hurt himself if his friends behind him hadn't caught him and let him down easy. He was only out for 3-4 seconds, but had I followed through, it would have been enough time to finish him off completely.
I don't claim to be any dedicated martial artist, but what exposure I've had clearly shows that unarmed combat can be potentially lethal. I'd never support a position that unarmed fights only "hurt" a little - attacks to the proper points can terminate ones ability to effectively resist. I'd never willingly allow that to happen to me or mine.
August 7th, 2007 04:56 PM
On a slightly different point
I think it is worthwhile to take the time to learn how to stop an attacker without the gun. While I'm not saying you have to spend two hours a day hitting the heavy bag or sign up for the Gracie program towards a BJJ black belt. What I do suggest is achieving some level of physical competence, if for nothing else than the resulting self-confidence and physical fitness.
Some would suggest that this makes you more likely to engage in physical combat. I respectfully submit that the opposite is true, evidenced by the fact that physical prowess lends calm confidence and reduces agitation levels when one is confronted with a possible hand-to-hand. Basically, if you're not worried about getting your head torn off, you're more likely to mantain control of the situation and avert impending violence. To put a finer point on it, I know I can physically eliminate most unarmed attackers, especially one-on-one; knowing I can hurt someone REALLY badly in a fight pushes that solution much further down the list of possibles...a second-to-last resort, right next to pulling the gun.
Incidentally, I have also had the occaision to use physical force to prevent a situation from becoming MUCH worse, too. Again, like learning to shoot, these are skills aquired specifically to be used as a tool, using such only when all other methods (running, talking your way out of it, etc) have been exhausted. .
Couldn't hurt to learn a little about the ol' rough and tumble, right?
A man in the hands of his enemies is flesh, and shudderingly vulnerable. - author unknown
August 7th, 2007 05:03 PM
Agreed, very much so.
Originally Posted by Rob72
I grew up fighting and have been in very many fights up into my mid 20s...before I decided that tusseling with folk in the street over slights and being 'dissrespected' is completely silly and makes it all that much more difficult to stay out of the system. I've been very fortunate to that end all things considered.
Today now days my position is damn a fight.
I've got other things to do and other places to be like eating dinner with my family, putting the kids to bed, and at work the next day toward supporting my family. People who fight people in the street et. al. do not have these same concerns, or atleast not as a primary initiative in their own mind.
Outside of a person cornering me personally or assaulting my wife or kids, I no longer have any taste or desire to go fisticuff with a person.
I'll let the jerk off feel like he won and drop it at that, call me a punk or whatever. I'm not going to jail or worst and losing my freedoms or ability to care for my family in exchange for momentary street cred and/or lack of personal emotional self control.
If I'm carrying then the above is doubled.
I'm emotionally prepared (hasn't become necessary yet) to stomach most what ever verbal barbs might be hurled my way by some jerk off(s) as I walk away.
Inversely if I'm pressed and again boxed in to a corner left with no other means of escape be it by verbal/nonverbal deescalation or physical escape, then the results will be very much different.
IMHO fighting in the streets is a game for young bucks, poor folks (with little to nothing to lose), and those who lack sufficient personal self control of their emotions and thus they themselves might not be people who should be carrying concealed weapons. That is pretty much exactly how the law sees things and so would my local permit issuing authority.
- Janq respectfully does unto others as I'd like them to do unto me
"Killers who are not deterred by laws against murder are not going to be deterred by laws against guns. " - Robert A. Levy
"A license to carry a concealed weapon does not make you a free-lance policeman." - Florida Div. of Licensing
August 7th, 2007 05:10 PM
I dunno... I would never introduce a firearm into a fist fight unless that firearm was in my hands and pointed at somebody trying to hurt me. I've always got a gun on me and therefore, if somebody still wanted to beat me up after I try to apologize or whatever to get him off my back, I've got two options.... run or draw. If my family was nearby and in potential danger, I'd draw. If not and I've got an escape route, I'd run.
August 7th, 2007 05:16 PM
I agree with Jang, but remember you can't get in an unarmed fight while CC. A gun will be in the mix whether your attacker knows it or not. If your taken out he then has the means to finish you, with your own gun.
CRIME..... LAW DEFINES, POLICE ENFORCE, CITIZENS PREVENT!
FOUR BOXES KEEP US FREE:  SOAP  BALLOT  JURY  AMMO!
August 7th, 2007 05:24 PM
Im to old and fat can't run and have survived at least 12 heart attacks that my Doctors know about, At this point in my so called Life
just about ANY kid or dog could take me out. Im not happy about my situation, but I will DOwith my weapon what must be done if need be, If I can walk away , I will but if I can't, So be it.
quis custodiet ipsos custodes?
August 7th, 2007 05:49 PM
One of the issues in this is disparity of force.
If I am seriously outmatched because the BG is much larger, a martial arts expert, armed with a weapon (bat, knife, gun, etc.), or there is more than one person, then I have reasonable justification to be in fear for my life or grave bodily harm. If I am old, sick, weak, or in some other way incapacitated, then disparity of force again comes into play.
The problem is when none of the above seem to be an issue, and someone physically attacks or threatens to attack, then what?
The last fight I was "in" occurred over a decade ago, and the friend I was with was an Army Ranger. A guy threw me against a wall, and my friend put him down in about 2 seconds (and that was from him standing 20 feet away when the attack occurred). So, I am not an accomplished fighter by any means.
I will walk/run away as needed. Apologize if that is what it takes to get out of there. Call 911, whatever. My LAST resort will be to draw my weapon. But, if I am in fear for my life or in fear of grave bodily harm...I'll draw and be prepared.
My opinion only. YMMV.
He is no fool who gives what he cannot keep to gain what he cannot lose. - Jim Elliott
The world is a dangerous place to live; not because of the people who are evil, but because of the people who don't do anything about it.
August 7th, 2007 06:07 PM
I'm not trying to start a war or anything, and I agree that fights should be avoided at all costs, but if someone is intent on doing you harm, and you can't talk them down, I feel that running away is not a good option. What if the person catches up to you and now you're tired? You also tend to turn your back to run away, putting yourself at a disadvantage. And plus the added burden of running with a pistol (full-size perhaps) seems like a pain.
As much as I hate fights, I can't image actually running away. I'd feel even more worried at that point.
August 7th, 2007 06:34 PM
Run. Run now, so you won't be tired, when you need to run for real. Get a $10 duffle bag at the army surplus, drop a 40# bag of sand in the bottom and stuff old sleeping bags in it, hang it fromthe garage roof and spend some time hitting it. I'm no "fighter", but I've tried to learn from those that are.
Originally Posted by gunlock
Carrying a weapon is not an "end", it is simply a means. Personal defense should include personal fitness, particularly since our odds of being in a car accident are far higher than being in a gunfight. Higher muscle mass, good cardio-condition, and flexibility are all key components in healing, whether from surgery, an MVA, or a fight. If our goal is "living", it may pay to consider the nature of our investments- time and money.
August 7th, 2007 06:53 PM
This is almost a no win situation when you are carrying. IF you have to fight(last resort). You will not know if you can handle the guy(guys) until it is to late. What starts out as a fist fight can turn ugly really quick before you can do anything. The guy can pull a knife, gun or his friends can show up. Now you have not pulled your gun and you can already be cut, shot or beat up bad. If there is no other out I am not willing to take that risk. I will draw and do whatever the BG dictates at that point. If he stops or runs I will back away and call the police. If he does not back off when you pull your gun, well I am forced to do what I need to do. And just because the BG is smaller than you does not mean he can't hurt or kill you with his bare hands. I hope this scenario never happens but if it does you must be mentally and phsically prepared to protect yourself and yours.
Last edited by KDD; August 7th, 2007 at 06:55 PM.
August 7th, 2007 06:54 PM
I think pulling your gun in a bar type fight is a gross over reaction. If you are being mugged/assaulted, or outnumbered that is a different story.
I've been jumped in a bar, never even saw the punch coming to the side of the head, everything went dark (i would consider this more of an assault than a fight). When i saw the surveillance tape later, i learned i was choking out the attacker while i was blacked out. I was armed at the time.
Most people that pick fights are idiots with little or no training. You don't really hear of MMA guys picking fights. Training breeds respect and restraint.
IMHO people should train (for however short) the basics of an unarmed fight, it will shed so much light on this, and give you so many more options.
August 7th, 2007 07:16 PM
I agree about the bar room fights, it is illegal to carry in a bar in Texas anyway. I was posting about the mugging that could turn into a fight or worse.
August 7th, 2007 08:36 PM
Should I Shoot Someone IF They Are Unarmed?
There are a lot of things to consider with the given scenario "can I shoot an unarmed person if they want to fight me?" You have to decide what you want to do and be prepared for the consequences plain and simple.
If you think doing 3 to 5 years hard time in a state penitentiary for manslaughter is no problem, then by all means shoot that unarmed guy who picked a fight with you because he feels you slighted him somehow.
State prison is full of people who made the wrong decision in when and under what circumstances to use their firearm. They aren't bad people, they just made a poor choice when they thought that using their gun would be on solid ground.
You can sit on the witness stand crying all day long saying how that scary looking guy who turned out was only two years younger than you and considered to be about average size and shape could have hit you in the temple and killed you... may have been able to strike you in the trachea and crush your larynx and all sorts of hypothetical outcomes until you are blue in the face. At the end of the day... the law and the courts "generally" frown on those who pull a gun and shoot an unarmed person who was foolish enough/drunk enough to pick a fight with someone they didn't know was armed.
Now, with that said, are there circumstances where shooting an unarmed person is excusable? Absolutely, but they are relatively rare and few in the numbers of situations. Your hypothetical explanations of "well he could have hit me here and that may have done this to me" is not going to be a satisfactory answer to a grand jury or a jury of your peers.
Getting a broken nose and some bruised ribs or a black eye or maybe a tooth knocked out is "generally" not considered to be a life threatening injury or even a serious crippling injury no matter how much you say that hypothetically you could have gotten a detached retina from the black eye, or you could have choked to death if you swallowed that broken tooth.
These are the facts... You have a gun! The other guy doesn't! You know you have a "stacked deck"... the other guy doesn't know you have a gun until you pull it out and shoot him with it! He believed he was fighting another unarmed guy!
Bullies, drunk or otherwise who like to fight people, don't pick fights with people they knew beforehand to have a gun! Therefore the prosecutor in the criminal case or the attorneys for his estate in the wrongful death case will argue the "unarmed victim" you killed may have been drunk, and may have been a bully... but he thought he was fighting a man "on common ground" and it did not warrant being shot down in a fixed and unfair fight! (May not be 1st degree murder, but probably good enough to send you away for a few years for involuntary manslaughter!)
The courts will hold you to a higher standard of care to avoid the situation, walk away and maybe even going to extrordanary means in not bringing your gun out even if the guy manages to hit you a few times.
Again, are there circumstances where shooting an unarmed person justifiable? YES! But you are on very shakey ground. If you are going to claim there was a "disparity of force" you should have some very compelling reasons that are clear and obvious to the court or grand jury. (Hypothetical explainations are really not going to be acceptable.) Disparity of Force is not just a loose term to throw out in court. You must be able to clearly show the factors that pertain to that disparity in order to convince a jury to excuse you for taking the life of an unarmed person. There has to be some accountability for taking someones life.
It is for that reason I strongly recommend people really understand the laws, how the court system works and know specific details of how lethal force is used and justified.
Massad Ayoob is internationally recognized as a preeminent authority of the legal of use deadly force in lethal situations for both law enforcement officers and civilians. To date, every single judge or attorney who has taken his 40 hour LFI-I Course will emphatically admit, they learned more about the judicious use of lethal force in his LFI course than in any law school in the country. And for good reason. The man knows his subject matter.
His school covers in depth what no other shooting school out there covers regarding the subject. I would highly recommend attending at least his 40 hour LFI-I Course. I think the course is $800 and is offered all over the country several times a year for those who can not travel to his home base in New Hampshire.
If you can not afford his course for a while or want a taste of what he has to offer, I highly recommend, and actually believe it is a "must have" item is to get his Judicious Use of Deadly Force video available in VHS and DVD for $34.95. It is over two hours of lecture straight out of his 40 hr. LFI-I course and it's value is truly worth your life! If you like what you see in that video I would also recommend Physio-Psychological Aspects of Violent Encounters which is another two hours straight out of the LFI-I course.
After that, I think most people will know exactly where they stand legally in most every situation and in every state of the union and most western countries of the world.
To visit his website and check out his courses and videos go here:
To purchase Judicious Use of Deadly Force and Physio-Psychological Aspects of Violent Encounters directly as well as many other books and videos from him and other authors, go here:
Everyone has their opinions and my post is only my opionion but I feel you will be more than happy with any of my recommended purchases from Ayoob.
Last edited by Bark'n; August 8th, 2007 at 02:58 AM.
Reason: added a title and changed some wording for form and clarity
"The gun is the great equalizer... For it is the gun, that allows the meek to repel the monsters; Whom are bigger, stronger and without conscience, prey on those who without one, would surely perish."
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