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Self-Protection on a Cycle

This topic contains 89 replies, has 26 voices, and was last updated by  orionz06 1 yr, 7 mos.

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Mick

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Feb 20 2013 at 3:35pm #

@Mikahil Sure if you run away, it encourages criminals to learn to pursue more effectively.

But equally true, if you fight, it will encourage criminals to learn to inflict violence more effectively.

If you call the police, criminal will learn to evade law authorities better next time.

That argument doesn’t do much either way.


Mikhail

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Feb 20 2013 at 4:13pm #

<a href="http://bikepgh.org/mb/topic/self-protection-
But equally true, if you fight, it will encourage criminals to learn to inflict violence more effectively.

Not exactly. If you flee — there is no risk involved. If you fight (or you call police) then there is a risk and this risk is very real. Those guys are very good at risk assessment.


byogman

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Feb 20 2013 at 4:18pm #

I never called them stupid.

They can learn from one failed trap to have a more coy approach next time. I’d expect them to.

Likewise, they can learn from the “charge!” strategy… step aside at the last minute and carry a long stick for the spokes of your wheel or just to swing at the head of the passing cyclist. Being nearly run over + peer pressure / mockery from compatriots for running would make pre-emptive violence very tempting for them even if they weren’t terribly violent to start.

What lesson do you want them to learn? Similarly, what does it mean to you if they’ve already learned it?

It’s not the same all around, the “charge!” strategy is plainly worse.

And not just for the future, but also in a live situation. Not that you have ultimate control over whether they’re violent, you don’t. But far more people react violently than act that way spontaneously. And you may have little idea how many people you’re dealing with.

In the light of this thought experiment, I take back my prior situational willingness to consider charging a (seemingly) lone assailant. I’m glad it worked well for you and all, but I just think it’s a bad idea.


Mick

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Feb 20 2013 at 6:47pm #

Fleeing and calling the police are not mutually exclusive. I don’t see the risk involved in calling the police.

Violence and calling the police might be mutually exclusive. Certainly in the short run. Possibly in the extreme long run.

And why would they “not exactly” learn better violence from a violent encounter? They are way more prepared to learn from that experience than you or I am.

So the risk is very real – we both agree to that. Where’s the benefit?

As near as I can see, every single argument you make about the ineffectiveness of avoiding violence also applies to embracing violence. It doesn’t solve anything and the perps will learn from it and be mroe effective next time.


joanne

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Feb 20 2013 at 10:08pm #

Very interesting discussion. Mikhail, I’m sorry you ran into trouble near CCAC–how did you deal with it?

I don’t know that I’d be able to rationally choose any of these courses of action if confronted with a threat–the few times I’ve been/felt in physical danger in my life, my reflexes have just taken over.


orionz06

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Feb 20 2013 at 10:27pm #

What did your reflexes have you do?

Like I said, figure out something now, not then.


joanne

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Feb 21 2013 at 10:00pm #

Well, the guy with the peculiar dead-eyed stare had been standing around at the bottom of some public stairs. When I passed him, caught the stare and then started to head up, he suddenly started up behind me. Maybe it was completely innocent, but I got that gut feeling–and I almost never get that. I immediately turned around, announced that I had forgotten something, quickly passed him and walked directly into a store at the bottom. So in that case, it was flight.

On the other hand I was confronted once years ago, and sensed that running would be a bad idea–so I reflexively stood up tall, tried to make myself look as big and broad as possible, and stared the person down. Typical animal defense.

And then there was the time almost 20 years ago that someone tried to stealthily pry open my apartment window as I was taking a nap. I woke up, not knowing what the noise was, opened the curtain, and from the looks of it scared the hell out of the guy. He tried to come up a story that he was just visiting someone and got the wrong apartment. I was still groggy and just snapped at him to hold on, and went to put some pants on. He was gone when I got back. That was the “he’s clearly more scared of you than you are of him” reflex. :)


Mikhail

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Feb 22 2013 at 6:43am #

@joanne Well, I brougth my younger daughter to Japanese class at CCAC so I was waiting for her and walking slowly around. I notice two groups (two and two guys) on different side of the road, identified a leader but did not change my course and walked through one of the group (without a leader). It was non leader group. Guy started towards me not letting him to get too close. I stopped looked directly into eyes and looked across the street at the leader and smiled — not even smiled, kind of “snarled” indicating “bring it on”. So leader shouted across the street: “Let him go!” And all suddenly two guys stepped away, said: “Hello!” anf I just passed through. I had enough time since groups identification to make a plan for fight, identifiing place where I can back up so only one could attack me. Other group was far enough to engage right away.


Mikhail

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Feb 22 2013 at 6:50am #

@joanne I usually try to not engage at all. I identified those two groups a hundred (or even more) yards away so I sould go to a different street. But I knew that someday my daughter could go to classes on her own and I had to establish some patterns.


orionz06

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Feb 22 2013 at 6:56am #

Did anyone go to the Safe Strides thing last night?

It’s amazing, based on the questions asked, how foolish the ideas people perpetuate are.

http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/video?autoStart=true&topVideoCatNo=default&clipId=8445144

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