Can *you* exercise non-lethal force?
I really can't, not yet anyway. Reading a lot of the things on this board has gotten me to thinking that if possible, it would behoove me to be able to project non-lethal force in addition to my pistol (i.e. pepper spray or something). Not all situations will give one time to use it, nor will the threat necessitate non-lethal force, but it seems to me a really good option to have available if a situation is developing that may require force or a show of force, but not quite (yet at least) to the point you have to draw a pistol. If I really get afraid of something about to happen, mr 9mm's coming out, but there are a lot of situations short of that where at least a good butt-whooping, serious injury, robbery or something else bad may about to happen too. Or, where there's a threat but it's ambiguous enough that drawing a handgun isn't necessarily called for based on what's visible.
For those of you who do keep other options open, what options do you carry? All I can think of is some sort of chemical or pepper spray, but what are the possiblities, short of being able to fight hand to hand or with some sort of martial arts?
And, not that I'd shirk from self-defense, but if it were possible to do something non-lethal first, even if it doesn't succeed in deterring the BG, wouldn't that be better for me so that I tried everything possible short of opening fire on an attacker?