Fight to Win, Not to Just Survive.

Most men and many women have been in some type of physical altercation.  In most cases this was just a schoolyard fight in which there was no danger of being seriously injured.  Now there is a big difference between this type of fight and one at which you are at serious risk of great bodily injury or death.  In the schoolyard fight, we often even followed some type of rules or sense of fair play.

When I went to school, kids did not use guns or other weapons, even though they were often available.  Today it is not unusual for kids to shoot and kill one another.  If you get into a physical confrontation today, it will be different that what you faced as a youth.  Today you have to assume that your life is at risk.  Now most of us aren’t 250 pounds of solid muscle and haven’t trained in martial arts.  It would be nice if we all had the time and resources to study martial arts and other means of self-defense.  Unfortunately, most of us will have to work with what we have.

Years ago, an FBI instructor told me that your single best means of defense was your mouth and over the years, I found that often to be true.  So if you have the opportunity try and talk your way out.  Stay calm don’t react to someone else’s anger.  But once you realize that there is no way to avoid a fight, react, don’t hesitate.  Fight to win not just to survive.

A firearm in the hands of a well-trained individual would be the first choice for a weapon of self-defense.  But because of firearms laws, concealed weapons laws and finances not everybody has this as an option.

So let’s talk about the typical out of shape middle aged individual, who is confronted with a violent criminal.  They are now forced to fight for their life.  They face several serious challenges besides their opponent.

  • They are probably reluctant to really hurt someone.
  • They have some sense of fair play and don’t go for the most vulnerable parts of his attacker.
  • They are out of shape and need to end it quick.

Even in police academies and martial arts, what we rarely learn or discuss is what to do in critical situations such as when someone gets the best of us. What do we do when the attacker overpowers us and we’re losing the fight?

The best solution a firearm. If you’re losing big time and in fear for your life, try to get to your weapon and use it.  Remember, chances are if you don’t, the attacker probably will. Next, if you can’t get to your firearm, use anything available to you—a brick, a lamp, a rock, knife, club—anything to win the fight.

Attack the vulnerable parts of the body: eyes, throat, groin, knees, and temple.  Many people concentrate on striking the groin.  We see this in the movies and on TV, but I can tell you it is an often-overrated strike.  It is easy to miss and people on drugs may not even react to it. Your best bet is to attack the head, rather than anyplace else.  First target,  the eyes. Gouge, rip, and punch at one or both eyes.  Jam a thumb into the eye at the bridge of the nose and you can pop the eye out of its socket.  An effective attack to the eyes will change the direction of the fight, instantly.

A punch to the Adams Apple, can cause your attacker to gasp for air. A forceful punch to that area can also be lethal, but if you’re on the losing end of the battle, go for it.  A solid punch to the temple can knock your opponent out. And don’t forget the ears; a solid blow to the ear can have instant results. Also don’t forget your teeth, a few years ago an officer survived a fight because he bit into his attacker jugular vein.  Messy, but it ended the fight.

The bottom line is that is only one rule and that is to win.  If you are facing a serious attack, you have to do whatever is necessary to win.  You need to make the decision now that you will fight to win, once the fight starts it is too late.


3 thoughts on “Fight to Win, Not to Just Survive.”

  1. I hope you are all paying attention to what Howard said. I know enough about his background to say that he really knows what he is talking about.


    The Purdue Homeland Security Institute is using simulation technology to come up with the best possible ways to handle active shooter situations. When Adam Kirby watched the attacks in Paris unfold on television, he couldn’t help but think of all the research he’s been doing for the past five years.

    “Response time is key,” said Kirby. “And as I was watching it, and the longer and longer they waited, my heart just kept sinking and sinking, knowing that more people and more people were probably dying as I was sitting there watching my TV. It was very hard to watch.”

    His Ph.D. dissertation at Purdue University is on mass shootings; and when police took 140 minutes to respond to the concert hall shooting on Friday, the active shooter simulation he has been working with over the years was running through his mind.

    “My research has shown that in a typical shooting situation, one person is shot roughly every 20 seconds,” explained Kirby. “And in 140 minutes, that leaves a lot of room for a lot of people to get shot.”

    The simulation technology allows him to adjust police response time, citizen concealed carry probability, and whether or not security guards are present during a shooting. He said all of these variables are something every venue should consider.

    “We want you to use our model to determine what solution is best for you,” said Kirby.

    He said overall, the simulations concluded if more innocent people were armed, less casualties would occur. Same goes with more security guards and faster police response times. Kirby plans to use the simulation program to recreate the Paris attacks once all variables are confirmed.

    “Once this is all settled down, we can actually look at the numbers, and learn from what happened,” said Kirby “And hopefully try and make some policy decisions, which is what we are trying to do with our research here at the Purdue Homeland Security Institute.”

    The institute helps police departments, schools, and even their own university create response plans for active shooter situations. After the shooting nearly two years ago on Purdue’s campus, the institute suggested every classroom should have a lock on the inside of the door. Since then, every Purdue classroom has installed one.

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