Tiger McKee

Shootrite Firearms Academy

Flash Mobs

They call them “flash mobs,” the term used for large groups that gather using social media to coordinate locations and time to
perform premeditated violence on a large scale.

When we think about defense against a violent threat we train and practice to deal with multiple threats, but finding yourself and family in the middle of hundreds of people set on attacking anyone is a completely different situation. Being ready is the key, but preparing for this type scenario is going to require a different approach from our normal thought process.

This new shift in attacks puts violence anywhere that large groups of victims are, with the most recent I’m aware of occurring at the Wisconsin State Fair, when hundreds of people gathered to attack those leaving the fair.

As armed citizens our first response to trouble is avoidance and escape. In order to do this you have to be know your environment and maintain a state of constant awareness, looking for a possible problem before it develops into something dangerous. With flash mobs this is especially critical. When something doesn’t feel, look or smell right, pay attention. Once you’re in trouble it’s hard to disengage, especially if you’re surrounded by it.

The key is to have a plan. Have plan A, B, C, and what I call plan X for the unexpected. Finding yourself in the middle of large groups bent on violence, especially when you have younger or elderly family members with you means this task is even more difficult. Moving out of an area, creating distance and time, and using cover are all skills that have to be in place before it’s trouble time.

Being aware of where your exits are and alternative escape routes is critical. You have to know your terrain. When trouble erupts you won’t have time to check your smart phone for an alternative route. Planning times to arrive and leave an event is a good idea. Leaving early is better than getting caught in the herd, where your direction of movement and alternative options are limited.

I’ve been in situations before when I couldn’t have gone anywhere if necessary; a Rolling Stones concert where it was all I could do to keep on my feet as people were pressed against a chain link fence, which eventually gave way, causing a massive surge, Mardi Gras in New Orleans on Bourbon Street was so crowded I could have lifted my feet off the ground and I would have been held erect and flowing along with the crowd. These were when I was younger; now days I avoid this type thing.

Imagine water, the example Bruce Lee often used. It can be soft and flowing smoothly, or it can come barreling down on you with a force that won’t be changed. Don’t get caught in the flood.


August 11, 2011 - Posted by | Defensive Mindset

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