There has been repeated discussion about my choice of weapons and the weapons that I have been training with. To be clear, the weapons I train with are: knife, stick, whip, staff, tomahawk and other practical items that I would be carrying on my person or would be located in my house (such as scarves, pens, heavy things, and other such oddities [note, I found out you can actually kill someone with a fan, not kidding]).
Many people have made comments about how ineffective these would be in a situation where there is a gun. To be clear, this is true, in certain cases. However, there are a lot of good points that need to be made.
a) There are a lot of places I can’t carry guns. That won’t stop a criminal, so I need to find a way to deal with the situation in the best way I can. If I know how to use another weapon effectively, this increases my chances of saving my life.
b) There is no way to ever be completely invulnerable from a gun. People say, “What if they have a gun? Your knife won’t work there.” Well, neither will your gun. If you have a gun and the other person has theirs drawn already, you can’t get your’s out without getting shot (unless, they are actually a coward and weren’t going to shoot you in the first place [note: please, never use a gun to scare people. If you pull it out, please shoot the person you are pointing it at. This is a good way to get your gun taken away and if they take your gun, you are f**ked])
c) There are strengths and weaknesses to EVERY WEAPON, even guns. Guns run out of ammo (one bullet does not mean one kill, or even one injury) when you repeatedly miss your target (which can easily happen at certain distances) and if you are carrying no other weapon, the person with a knife now has a clear advantage. If there are multiple attackers and you don’t have enough bullets for all of them, or you miss several times, you are now, again, out of ammo and anyone with a weapon or just more buddies now has the advantage. There is also a possibility of a misfire or a jam, which renders your gun completely obsolete. Reloading takes as much time as it would take for me to put my knife into your favorite internal organ and twist. Drawing also takes time (we’ll talk about this when we talk about optimum range). Also there is a disadvantage for those who haven’t trained with their gun effectively and miss targets when ammo is a precious commodity (again, one bullet does not mean one kill, or even one injury). And if your too close (again, there is a optimum range we will discuss), the person that takes your gun away can be more or as effective as you are and you’ve just pissed them off by pointing your gun at them.
d) The next point is range. There is an optimal range for guns. Myth Busters has covered this and martial artists will tell you all day and night, the optimal range for a handgun is at least 21 feet (for bigger guns its even further). This is the time it will take you to draw your gun to aim and fire. If someone has a knife and is inside this range, they can get their knife into your Cerebral Spine and down your sternum before you shoot (by the way, just so you know, you are now DEAD). If you’re inside that range and someone else has a gun, if you react quickly enough, you have a pretty decent chance of reducing their combat effectiveness to hoping you trip over their corpse (goodness I’m dark). Furthering on range, pistols have a maximum effective range (especially if you don’t go to the range on a weekly basis and most people don’t…). Even the best shooter in the world gets worse the further away they are (especially if you aren’t a trained soldier, which is the reference point for all the statistics on effective ranges for guns). The maximum effective range is 150 feet. If someone has a hit out on you, then maybe someone will try to shoot you from that distance, but most attacks happen at close range, but even if they don’t, refer to my point b. You can’t make yourself invulnerable from a gun by carrying a gun.
e) If the gun is within reach, there are techniques to take the gun and/or your life (and/or the arm its attached to [if you dislocate someone’s shoulder its pretty easy to help them put a bullet in their own face]). I have learned these and am improving my effectiveness with them.
Should you carry a gun? YES! Should you carry and know how to use other weapons? I WOULD (and do)! Guns (if open carried) can deter attackers (not that your plan should EVER be to use a gun for deterrence alone. Be prepared to kill if you have a weapon). If someone is threatening you in a dark parking lot, having a gun (if they don’t have one drawn or you can’t take theirs) can save your life. But guns aren’t my ONLY PLAN. There are too many situations where I could lose my life if I don’t have another plan of attack (as I have outlined above). I highly encourage you to consider learning how to use other weapons, how to use household items as weapons and open handed combat (because, in most situations, you will always have your hands with you). And, lets be honest, knowing how to kill a person with your purse is pretty empowering.
Effectiveness Range Test: