Know Thyself & Thy Enemy

In any fight, it is vital to do as Sun Tzu said, “know thy self, know thy enemy,” which means that you need to know who you are and what you stand for, your capabilities, and the same for your potential adversaries. This means having an honest discussion with the reflection in the mirror, as well as deliberately planning in your head what you are most likely to face, addressing shortcomings, and training to close that gap.

When you look in the mirror, what do you see? Most men, I included, see someone who is 20-30lbs lighter than they really are. Someone fit can fight off a pack of criminals, are cool under pressure, and would have no issues in a gunfight. The reality is that most people have never been in that position. Less than 1% of the Nation has served in the military and got that type of training, with even fewer having been combat arms, with even fewer being infantry, special operations, or someone who would regularly practice room clearing, reactive shooting, or something similar. This would be like the number of folks who have gone to police training, SWAT training, or any other type of training. According to the CDC, 40% of all Americans are considered obese, making everything from wearing body armor to carrying concealed carry more challenging. How many times have you gone to the range in the last three months? Your new carry gun, how does it shoot at 50 yards or 5 feet? When you go out, do you have your gun on you in your Original holster, or do you leave it in the car when you go to the grocery store? Have you practiced drawing from your holster? What about shooting with your off-hand if you have an injury? These are just a short list of things you can control and practice. None of us know when a life-or-death situation will happen, so being able to prepare for as many eventualities physically or mentally will only make you better in all conditions. I would highly encourage you to get additional training from an expert in your local area or one of the bigger training academies that focus on areas you want to improve.

So now, let us look at whom your enemy might be. Statistically speaking, it is more likely to be a male, and if you have looked at the targets of a shooting range, there are no female targets. According to the Justice Department stats, 75.6% were male, 20.1% were female, and the rest were unidentifiable. Most crime happens due to opportunities or perceived weak points. As I stated in other articles, most people assume that it will be at night, which, if you are outside your home, maybe more accurate to operate under cover of darkness. This can be offset with a light and training in lower light situations. If at home, it is a higher likelihood of having a home invasion during the day when criminals assume most if not all people are at work. Most criminals do not wear body armor. However, if you saw my video review of the Arizona carjacking, it does happen, so be prepared to aim for the weak spots I pointed out in a different blog. The odds of a lone attacker are more likely for a shooter with the intent of doing a mass shooting, whereas a burglary which is much more common, is more likely to have multiple people. Do the research for your area, see the trends, and talk with your local police about what they see as trends.

Know thyself, fix what you can to the best of your ability to give you the advantage in a fight. Know thy enemy and what is most likely to happen in your area. Do those things, and like what Sun Tsu stated, “you will win 1000 battles.”

Author: Ian Bolser

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