Monday, July 20, 2009

How to not get killed.

Not too many blocks from where we went to go see the movie Saturday afternoon, apparently the five-oh was clearing up a crime scene where two women had been found sitting in a car, shot dead as Dillinger.

The legacy media interviewed one local bright light who said
"I'm scared to walk my dog out here now because they were probably around my age, around 20," said Jessica Mallah. "I don't want to walk around alone now because I don't know what happened to them, if it was personal or just a random act of violence."

Well, Jessica, I'm going to say it was probably a random act of personal violence. As a community service, allow me to share Tamara's Handy Tips For Not Winding Up On The Wrong Side Of The Yellow Tape:

1) If you're in a bad neighborhood, the kind where you get to hear gunfire and sirens on a nightly basis, move. If you can't move, have yourself inside at a decent hour, before the time when "suspects" start outnumbering "witnesses" on street corners.

2) As a matter of fact, having yourself in at a decent hour is good advice for just about anybody. Ask your local po-po, but I'd bet that in most places, not much good happens after ten p.m.; certainly after midnight, the majority of the folks not already at home are already legally intoxicated, or are engaged in business transactions buying or selling intoxicants. Saying that these people are overrepresented in criminal and traffic code violations is like saying that rednecks are overrepresented in the stands at a NASCAR race.

3) Regardless of your opinion of the War on (Some) Drugs, the fact remains that, for now, drugs are illegal. This means that to get any for your own use, you have to come in contact with some one who is, by definition... class? Anyone? That's right, a criminal. Now, other than engaging in a little unlicensed pharmaceutical distribution, your particular connection may be a saint and a member of the Kiwanis. On the other hand, how well do you really know them? They've demonstrated the willingness to break one law; what others do they break? What other criminals do they associate with? What are the chances of this all ending in tears? If you want to play the safe side of the odds, wear your seatbelt, don't ride motorcycles, and stay away from the dope and the people who use it.

4) Likewise, hitting people is against the law. You should stay the hell away from people who think fisticuffs is an appropriate method of conflict resolution for adults. Particularly if they also have a fondness for judgement-impairing substances like Budweiser. I don't care if you lovelovelove them; if they have proven their willingness to talk with their fists, they will do it again, and maybe worse. If you are living with them or hanging around them, get out. You can then settle your differences from the other end of a phone line a whole lot safer than you could have from inside the tiger cage.

You'll notice that I didn't get into traditional self-defense talk, whether about handgun carry permits and pepper spray or being alert and dialing 911? That's because if you follow the handy lifestyle guidelines above, you will remove 99.99% of the chances that you will ever need the rest of it, because truly random violent crime is really pretty rare most places and can often be avoided by simple alertness.

So, there you go: Stay away from people who habitually break laws. Stay away from places where people who are breaking laws tend to congregate. If you want to move on to being an advanced practitioner, we can start talking about alertness color codes and training and carry permits and such, but the above steps should have you well down the road to a safer life.


Anonymous said...

Hackathorn's First Law: Don't go where you don't belong.

Shootin' Buddy

knirirr said...

That's good advice.
The way Mr. Marwood phrases it in his self-protection lectures is "don't got to stupid places with stupid people to do stupid things," IIRC.

Canthros said...

Supporting the idea that this wasn't an entirely random act of violence: it is a strange coincidence that one of the victim's photos looks like it came from the county lock-up, but maybe orange is in style or something.

Tam said...

This may come as a shock, but both sported a small collection of misdemeanor convictions.

Mikael said...

Well pawnbroker, I'll nitpickingly disgree, but the good after 11pm is traditionally held indoors in a "my place or yours" sort of thing, or just a late night out at the local geek-club.

Joseph said...

Kind of like the old saying, if you want to survive a gun fight, don't get into a gunfight.

Fuzzy Curmudgeon said...

In 1998 I lived about 12 blocks south of there, in a nice, quiet apartment complex. One night, about 1:30 AM-ish, my nutcase next-door neighbor opened her door and her ex-boyfriend plugged her in the face.

While that was a shocka, especially when the deputies pounded on my door and wanted to know if I knew anything about it (I didn't; I'd been asleep and woke up to what I thought was some asshole kid throwing firecrackers in the foyer), it was also a one-time crime of passion. That kind of thing just didn't happen in that neighborhood. It didn't bother me in the slightest to walk around at night in the complex, and the only reason I moved out the next summer was because I was tired of paying rent and decided to buy a condo.

Today I live about 9 blocks south of there, and while the neighborhood isn't what it was when I was growing up in it, it's still pretty durn safe -- and so is just about every other neighborhood and apartment complex around here.

What Miss Mallah really needs is to get herself some perspective. And WTHR and WeRuinTV wouldn't kill themselves if they were to add an interesting quote that I found on the Channel 59 website's version of the story:

"Police won't say whether Preer and Tinney were the victims of a shooting. But even police will say crime in this area isn't common.

"'I can't remember the last time we had a homicide up in this area. It's very strange, unusual,' said Metro Police Sgt. Matthew Mount."

Yes, it is.

theirritablearchitect said...

"...You should stay the hell away from people who think fisticuffs is an appropriate method of conflict resolution for adults..."

Depends on the specific conflict, whether it's avoidable and how you'd define both 'conflict resolution' and 'adults'. I'm pretty OK with the idea of tagging someone in the kisser, if I need to really get their attention.

I'd usually define that as being conflict resolution of some sort.

To each their own, I suppose.

Tam said...

Oh, the neighborhood isn't a bad one at all (of course, no telling where they had been earlier in the morning.)

Handy Homicide Map.

Tam said...


Sure, and I ride motorcycles. However I can't bitch about the unfairness of the universe if I fall off one; the risks are known.

If someone hangs out with people who make a habit of laying hands on others, they can't complain if they get hands laid on them. If someone doesn't like getting hit, they should not hang around with folks who hit people.

Personally, I don't like being hit, and therefore I do things to avoid it. And if peaceful methods of avoiding getting hit don't work, I'll use ones that are more to the point.

Joanna said...

Excitement, safety, stupidity. Pick any two.

jimbob86 said...

"I'm pretty OK with the idea of tagging someone in the kisser, if I need to really get their attention."

I know guy that "tagged someone in the kisser"..... the targeted individual fell and hit his head on the sidewalk and never regained consciuosness. They pulled the plug on him a few days later.

The manslaughter conviction was a slam dunk. He's out of prison now, and has to live with the fact that he killed a man....... just something to think about before you go to punching someone..... knowing the risks and all that.....

Divemedic said...

I agree with the saying about "nothing good happens after midnight."

In EMS the saying goes "If you respond to a traffic accident after midnight, and one of the people on the scene i not intoxicated, keep looking, you haven't found everyone yet."

staghounds said...

My father, a champion amateur boxer, always told me that

"The very best thing that can happen in a fight is that you will get skinned knuckles and an enemy for life.

Second prize is a wheelchair."

He was right. Killing someone solves a particular problem, defeating him in a fight just makes whatever was wrong worse.

If you are with people who need to be hit, get away from them. If you think that hitting someone is ever reasonable in cases other than boxing or self defence, smarten up. YOU are the sort of person to be avoided.

Frank W. James said...

A few years back, there were some 'tensions' in a certain part of Nap-town due to a certain racial climate and, of course, as these happen it was during the State Fair. The Indiana State Fairgrounds just happens to be located smack dab in the middle of the area afflicted.

There were ALL KINDS of Indiana State Police during the entire fair ALL OVER the area because they didn't want the volative mixture of farmers, pick-ups trucks, racial tensions and ground-hog rifles coming together.

I remember it well because I 'escorted' my daughter who was in the state finals for 4-H dress review as we walked past four old salty looking state troopers at the entrance to the fairgrounds. The oldest saw my somewhat 'large' fanny pack squarely at my belt buckle and he gave me a nod and a tip of his forefinger to the brim of his hat.

It was broad daylight and everyone WAS expecting trouble but no one in their right mind WANTED any.

Oh yeah, it was a great day because she won and was State Champion in her division. I've always appreciated that salty ole state trooper (whomever he was) he knew the score and I got the feeling he didn't blame me a bit.

All The Best,
Frank W. James

Will said...

Back in the 80's, a co-worker was having an affair with the wife of a deployed soldier. He returned, they reunited, co-worker decided to express his displeasure. He challenged the soldier in front of friends. Co-worker was body builder type, still got his ass whipped. Shortly thereafter, he taped a flashlight under the barrel of his rifle, entered the soldiers house, and proceeded to walk around looking at the various sleeping family members until finding the couple. Shot those two, then went out in the yard and put the muzzle under his chin.
Lots of potential lessons contained in this story.

Joanna said...

One thing they stress in krav maga is that fighting should be your absolute last option. The moves, therefore, fall into two categories: Get Free and Get Away, and Put Them Down and Get Away. There is no "Let's just spar for a while and see what happens" set of moves. You strike, you strike hard and you strike, possibly, to kill -- but ONLY if that is your absolute last option.

Another thing worth noting is that most of the moves I learned come from a defensive position. Very few depend on you striking before your attacker.

alex. said...

There are victims, and then there are volunteers. The first group didn't ask for trouble; the second was begging for it, and got it in spades.

Somerled said...

It's telling when the local news media can only uncover booking room mugshots for the murder victims.

mts1 said...

And every perpetrator has a momma who gets on teewee and swears up and down that he was home with her reading the Bible when the incident happened, even as the next minute the news starts to give a digest of his criminal rap sheet. The price of the Bill of Rights is having the same damn 10-100 people in your locale committing nearly all the crime, and you can't throw them in jail forever just on principle.

Just down the road from me, a small town had its first killing ever this weekend when - get this, two drunks arguing, surprise surprise - decide to keep it up in the parking lot after Last Call, and one had his fill and gave the other instant lead poisoning by insertion. Mind you, first killing ever. As in, a town safer than Mayberry with Sheriff Taylor standing in front of you. We even had one drunk throw another through a plate glass window at closing time this week.

I'm not looking to give the exception that disproves the rule; just that sometimes, stuff just happens. And that's why I don't get blitzed. I am a control freak, and sobriety has been my friend. Sober on the L, sober in the bar, sober at the house party when everyone else pukes themselves up.

Matt G said...

It's interesting to see a rather lengthy post from my bestest libertarianest friend, and see NOT A SINGLE WORD that I would change, had I written on the subject.

Mebbeso you're not edgey enough, here. Or maybe, some truths are simply worth stating.

bedlamite said...

If you're even considering drinking Budweiser, your judgment is already impaired.

Turk Turon said...

I went to the movies Saturday afternoon, too. I was part of a foursome. Between us we were carrying six or seven guns. (Well, not literally between us, it was the aggregated total of firearms.) Not a shot was fired and nobody was hurt, inconvenienced or even perturbed.

wv: phalure

What the phuck is going on with these Captcha words?

Larry said...

Pappy used to tell me if I wasn't in bed by 9 o'clock I might as well go on home.

ate rhea said...

there are times that even if we avoid dangerous places and people, danger is still there. I think we just need but to take care of ourselves well. We should be vigilant at anytime.

rich said...

it's best if we know how to defend ourselves just to make sure we will be alive anywhere we go. at this time, we are not anymore sure of who to trust, where it is safe.

me said...

just take note guys: if you are prepared for peace, be ready for war.

Sebatinsky said...

I got mugged at around 9pm in a college neighborhood (I was walking home from work).

I don't know how much I can stress the alertness point. I was looking at my phone, not paying much attention to the world around me, and I was totally taken by surprise. I could have had a handgun, and it wouldn't have made any difference.

Rule number one in my book is pay attention.

Anonymous said...

I like the get off the streets after 10pm.....

Reminds me the olde antigun thing about how you are most likely to be shot by "someone you know". Which is correct, total strangers rarely off one another and oh, hey. If you do not have friends and acquaitances who are former violent felons, sex workers, and drug users in your current circle... Guess what? The odds of getting shot are about as high as winning the big lottery.