In 2004, college student Brooke Wilberger was abducted from a nearby apartment complex. Her body was found in 2009, again, in the nearby coastal hills; her murderer was convicted and is serving a life sentence. 
These dangerous criminal surely had driven on the same road that passes just blocks from our house. Yet we don’t live in a crime ridden urban inner city; we live in a small university town known for it’s academics, science and engineering. Still, these crimes, and others just as horrid have happened here in the past, as they do everywhere in the country.
We tend to hold mythological ideas about our probability of being victims of violent crime. We may wrongly think that we are safe at home while or while on vacation, or that we are in danger of harm when we may be perfectly safe. We may also believe that we are safer by having a loaded gun in our home – though statistically, the overwhelming majority of gun violence victims were family members rather than the extremely rare (0.5%) unknown intruder.
So I recently read with great interest a blog posting by Sam Harris titled “The Truth about Violence”. I believe this is very important information about the reality regarding our personal safety; so much so that I sent the link to my wife and children to read. I am now passing this on to my readers as well as I think it provides some very CRUCIAL and PRACTICAL information about how to survive personal attacks of violence. I urge you to read it and to pass it along to others.
Among the most important points of the article are:
Avoid conflict:Here is the link to the article. Read it, pass it on, and be safe!
This is a tough one for adult males whose ego is often difficult to disengage from their self image and whose provoking words can quickly escalate into physical combat. In truth, there is nothing anyone can say to you that would justify instigating physical violence. Unless you are clearly defending yourself from physical attack, you could be charged with criminal assault and potentially civil lawsuit.
Do not defend your property:
Your stuff is only stuff. When I worked in bank operations we repeatedly advised tellers to hand over the money quickly and politely to bank robbers. There is nothing in your wallet or purse or in your home that is worth your life or injury or the life or injury of another person. Let it go.
ESCAPE at all costs:
This is a difficult one, if you are approached in a parking lot, for example, and someone tries to force you into a car, RESIST AND FIGHT WITH ALL YOUR MIGHT. Yes, you may be injured trying to escape, but if someone exerts their control and gets you to a remote location, you are probably going to die anyway and likely in a more horrible way if you don't do everything in your power to prevent being taken to an isolated location.
Lastly, and this is a very tough decision; but if someone takes a family member hostage and demands your compliance – ESCAPE, even if you leave the family member behind. If the criminal takes control of both of you, it will not end well. By one of you escaping, the criminal has lost control and knows now that help may be soon on the way.
The Truth about Violence - 3 Principles of Self-DefenseReferences:
by Sam Harris.
by Sam Harris.
1. Pair can face trial in Washington in three-state killing rampage, Los Angeles Times.
2. Brooke Wilberger Found: Killer Gives Location of Remains to Avoid Death Penalty, ABCNew.com
3. Gun Ownership as a Risk Factor for Homicide in the Home, New England Journal of Medicine.