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in the last month I have observed 2 seperate incidents where I observed a 2 or 3 second period where everyone including me froze. 1st a nut burst into Wal Mart waving a very real looking Beretta look alike bb pistol. 2nd at a gun show Saturday a live round went off.(2 injured). I find this disturbing a little because a bad guy is going full speed and a cc holder is already behind. But then I don't want to act too fast either. comments? how do you prepare? I have shot plenty of competition but not the same IMHO.
 

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I don't see what the issue is here.

You did not overreact during the Walmart incident and you didn't overreact during the negligent discharge incident so it appears to me that you are doing fine.

If I was you, I'd probably go buy a lottery ticket.
 

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Sawfiler. Outside of a combat zone where the rules of engagement are a lot different you are always behind the curve so to speak. You will not dictate the circumstance, distance, cover or concealment of a self defense encounter the other guy will.

The guy waving the look alike BB gun depending on his actions that went along with it I would have treated this as a viable threat and taken action up to the point of the actual draw and engagement. Shot goes off in a gun show technically my firearm is unloaded and zip tied at the door but again actions would be taken up to the point of engagement until I saw a credible threat.

Don't feel like the Lone Ranger. Many a gun toter has been caught off guard so to speak and in afterthought chastised themselves for being unprepared or not paying enough attention.
 

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Whenever anything outside the realm of common occurs, most people react with a few seconds of "what was that?". Conversely, those who have been overly-sensitized by experiences tend to explode off the X whenever anything they associate with possible danger occurs. When the danger is real and present, we generally react as we have trained. I strongly recommend force-on-force training from a credible program.
 

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in the last month I have observed 2 seperate incidents where I observed a 2 or 3 second period where everyone including me froze. 1st a nut burst into Wal Mart waving a very real looking Beretta look alike bb pistol. 2nd at a gun show Saturday a live round went off.(2 injured). I find this disturbing a little because a bad guy is going full speed and a cc holder is already behind. But then I don't want to act too fast either. comments? how do you prepare? I have shot plenty of competition but not the same IMHO.
Your actions are normal. Do not be ashamed of that.

As for preparing for these types of situations, like Mike has said FoF training is of great benefit. Also look into studying OODA loop.
 

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You have your firearm and ammo, now invest in some quality 'track shoes'...:theyareontome:
 
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It isn't natural for most people to act without understanding the full scope of the situation and the "freezing" is the brain's desire for more information and more time to process it. It also isn't natural for people to remain calm and act calmly during episodes of extreme danger.

The truly dangerous man will not freeze, but will act first, and he will not get excited about it. This cannot be taught, and it is the kind of experience that very few attain and live to tell about. The good news is that 99.9999% of civilians walking around out there are in the same boat that you are, so I wouldn't worry too much about it. In civilized society we don't want people acting decisively without all the information and without enough time to process it. The BG will most likely have the drop, and you will be at a disadvantage. Is this lessened or increased by being armed?

The side arm is just a tool. YOU are the weapon. You aim with your eye and you kill with your mind, and that's all there is to it.
 

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I definitely agree with Mike1956. I haven't had a chance to participate in any of these training programs yet but what you are conditioned to is very important (training is another layer to that).

Sometimes it surprises me how I can identify caliber by their report. Just earlier this month a good friend and I were working on his car stereo project in my garage. We had the garage open naturally, just hanging out and playing good ol' 80s while we worked. I heard a gunshot noise a few houses down, which I naturally went outside to take a peek. It sounded like a .22LR so I wasn't immediately concerned but I was curious as to who could possibly be shooting that around the neighborhood. Turns out, it was some powder-actuated tools being used outside on a house undergoing renovation.

Point being, I didn't have to go "what was that?" but more or less went into condition yellow and thought "who is shooting a 22LR around here?!"
 

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As a part of military training, we set up ambushes. The target was always caught flat footed. They always incurred casualties. That is the point of an ambush. The objective is to rehearse how to react to an ambush.

The aggressor gets to choose when and where the attack occurs. They also get to choose the target. Your initial defense is to manipulate the variables in these choices (don't look like a soft target, avoid vulnerable or high risk locations...), but ultimately the choice to attack lies with the aggressor. Your final defense is how to react. Evaluating the threat is a perfectly appropriate reaction. An advanced skill is to process most of the data before contact is made (situational awareness), speed up your evaluation, and execute your improvised plan (assault through, break contact...). Remember you can perform multiple (mental and physical) tasks simultaneously.
 

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1st a nut burst into Wal Mart waving a very real looking Beretta look alike bb pistol. 2nd at a gun show Saturday a live round went off.(2 injured). I find this disturbing a little because a bad guy is going full speed and a cc holder is already behind. But then I don't want to act too fast either. comments? how do you prepare? I have shot plenty of competition but not the same IMHO.
In a country of 312M+ people, there are bound to be the occasional incidents, here and there. Even in the average large, metro community, one has a fair chance of being near some sort of "bad thing" that happens while we are out and about. How to prepare, basically? Be armed. Be trained, as much as you can, to deal with real-world "street" type situations blowing sideways right in front of you.

How to deal with being behind the curve in a new situation blowing sideways? Well, that's basically how it goes. We are, by definition, reacting to the situation. We need to be armed, be reasonably capable of reacting lawfully and effectively to keep ourselves safe and to defend ourselves. We need to be capable of actively engaging a clear threat when it's clear we've reached the point of the gravest extreme and there is no alternative.

As some of the other recent threads have described, quality Force-On-Force style training sessions can greatly help show weaknesses in our understanding of and prep for how fairly typical, real "street" situations unfold. Practice drawing from concealment until it's second nature. Practice with your sidearm until you're reasonably expert in its basic operation and accuracy. Evaluate scenarios and do what you can to simulate them in training. Learn close-quarters and H2H type skills and techniques, as very often the firearm isn't the answer.

In the situation you are speaking of, the one at Wal-Mart, IIRC the clerk wasn't much torqued by the event and recognized it as product/service claims by the upset customer, not an outright crime of violence unfolding ... for all the waving the pistol around. Hard for someone to know who's just catching a glimpse from further off, of course, who doesn't have the benefit of hearing the words/claims of the customer. But the demeanor of people in the immediate vicinity and no further action from the customer should have been clear clues that this wasn't a dire, deadly violent situation, at least after the first moments were over and the clerk was engaging the customer.

Hard to know, in practice, but the totality of circumstances should definitely make things clear at some point. Most situations are going to show their colors fairly quickly, while some (like this WM example) are just garden-variety customers who have a gripe a clerk needs to deal with. Granted, in this case, it was about a BB gun, and it was terribly stupid and potentially threatening to be waving it around that way, no matter how bummed he might have been. But since it wasn't taken further, it soon should have been apparent there wasn't an actual threat beyond an upset customer.

How does one know? One doesn't, until it blows. And then your training/skills should kick, taking suitable precautions in case it does get truly ugly (ie, increasing distance, finding cover, exiting stage right), preparing to defend yourself if it's truly beginning to threaten you directly. How does one know how to go about this well? Training. Practice. More training. More practice. Still more training ...
 

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I agree with most of what has been said. From a defensive situation, as has been noted, you are always behind the curve. However, don't beat yourself up for that momentary pause. That is your brain trying to take in the flood of information and process it. Frankly, I would rather have this happen resulting in a controlled response to the perceived threat than someone who just instantly reacts without thought only to find out later on that his reaction was inappropriate. Obviously the longer it takes a person to process the information and react, the greater the risk to that person. Training and practice help shorten that time frame, but do not, and in my opinion, should not eliminate it.
 

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The target was always caught flat footed. They always incurred casualties. That is the point of an ambush.
THIS.
 
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