Personal Defense / Risk

What Does It Mean to be “Unarmed” Again?

I had not heard the story of the Florida man (or is it another case of #FloridaMan?) who died in Queens recently after being punched in the head. At least not until his alleged assailant was identified as an assistant basketball coach at my school, Wake Forest University.

Somehow in response to drunken Florida Man banging on cars and causing a disturbance, a local resident confronted Florida Man and got punched in the face for his efforts.

Thereafter, the Wake Forest coach approached Florida Man and punched him, “causing him to fall to the ground and hit his head on the pavement.” He died thereafter in the hospital.

The coach, who may have had (and may still have) a case for self-defense or defense of another, was seen on surveillance video walking away from the scene, rather than calling the police as someone with a legitimate self-defense case might do.

But the big reason I stopped on my way out of the office to comment on this story today is not the Wake Forest angle, or the self-defense angle, but the fact that the coach was “UNARMED” and yet still killed Florida Man.

As I have discussed before — and as is frequently heard in armed self-defense training — someone being “unarmed” and someone not having the ability to kill or maim you are not at all the same thing. Someone whose only weapons are part(s) of their body can most definitely kill you.

Which is not to deny that a “force continuum” exists, but I never like to read about “unarmed” people as it that means they are not dangerous, up to and including lethally.

(Additional editorial aside: Is anyone surprised there was alcohol involved in this event? How many fewer problems would we have in society if it weren’t for alcohol? If it could save just one life to rid our society of this harmful force, wouldn’t it be worth it?)

13 thoughts on “What Does It Mean to be “Unarmed” Again?

  1. So many rabbit holes to go down!

    The media seems to revel in any opportunity to mention “race” or “unarmed” when the implication will fit their narrative.

    Thank you for zeroing in on the “unarmed” canard. We here know the uselessness of the word and can avoid the intentional, subliminal seduction of the implied “innocent, harmless and defenseless” when the word is used.
    Yet, “they” love inserting the word to further stoke the smoldering division I fear is heading …nowhere good.
    Nowhere good at all.

    Related, any connection to mohammedam-fanatacism by a perp is omitted. Subliminal non-implication-by-omission.
    News stories in the EU stretch the boundaries of PC euphemism by saying “Asian youths,” and US media omit description altogether.
    Christmas party slaughters, New Mexico training camps, a beheading in the workplace, murder-vans, no-go zones, rape-grooming and stabbings in the street in Europe…the list goes on.

    I love the alcohol connection you bring up and the “if it saved just one life” argument to show the hypocrisy of the elite.

    As a LE/fire/EMS dispatcher, someone who hasn’t had a drink in >10yrs and as a mere observer– call-outs, fights, domestics, Emotionally Disturbed Person calls and virtually every issue which has a component of violence has one common denominator: booze.

    If not a primary, real time cause, it is 2-3 layers down as the root of what’s brought LE involvement.
    Practically every. last. one.

    Should alcohol be banned? Absolutely not.

    Is it a greater factor than almost any other?
    I believe it is.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. David: Thank you so much for this.

    It’s a point I’ve brought up numerous times, and it’s a constant source of frustration that so many equate “unarmed” with “unable to cause harm”.

    I just looked at the FBI UCR for 2016. Number of murders commited by hands/feet? 656. Number of aggravated assault by hands/feet (personal weapons)? 184,047. and some might say “well, they didn’t die…” maybe so, but as Tom Givens likes to point out, aggravated assault means they were trying to kill you and failed; plus now you get to live the rest of your life crippled and maimed. Not a grand consolation prize.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I was going to mention the FBI’s UCR, as well. Hands and feet and strangulation account for more homicides each year – and have for decades – than *all* long guns, including the dread ARs.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. They tried outlawing alchohol. It was called prohibition. People died because the illegal sale of alchohol gave birth to modern organized crime. Outlawing things solves nothing cause its the simpletons way out.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Turning the other cheek just means that you get struck on the other or worse. Meeting force with force is morally justifuable. After all, someone who has initiated violence may well meet the police with it, as I can attest from my career in LE. I hadn’t been in a physical confrontation in decades when I became a cop and haven’t had any since I retired. All of the confrontations in which I was involved were reactive, dealing with someone who had initiated force against another and felt inclined to continue with us.

      My motto is “avoid physical confrontation when you can but if a man strikes you on your left cheek, drop him to the ground. If he comes at you with a weapon – including hands and feet, take him out of the fight as quickly as you can. If the weapon is a deadly one and you are armed,, I advocate defending yourself with *your* firearm.”

      Most of my friends, including a number of retired LEOs, have said that being armed makes us much less likely to engage in confrontation – you can flip us off with impunity, call us names and we don’t take the bait, because if that bird or those words lead to a physical confrontation, we have the tools to end it fatally. So, we let a lot of stuff slide. I did it as a cop, for the most part.

      Liked by 1 person

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