Author: Manny OG
Reducing Street Fight Legal and Personal Risks. Are you afraid of conflict? This is a perfectly normal, and even healthy part of humans. Instinctively however, our brains tell us that conflict is dangerous, so our natural inclination is to do battle or run away. Since most conflicts are inevitable, learning to handle them in a healthy way is crucial. When conflict is mismanaged, it can cause harm to both the offender and the offended. This also applies to your relationship with friends and family. But when handled in a respectful and positive way, conflict provides an opportunity for growth, ultimately strengthening the bond between two people or let peace reign. By learning the skills you need for successful conflict resolution, you can keep your personal and professional relationships strong and growing. You can also keep yourself and your family safe with good conflict resolution skills.
Conflicts emerge from differences. It occurs whenever people disagree over their values, motivations, perceptions, ideologies and beliefs. Most times, these differences look very trivial, but when a conflict provokes strong feelings, a deep personal need to feel safe, secure, respected and valued will be at the core of the problem. It happens everywhere; at work, at home, at school, on the streets and places of business and even online. In any of these situations, your security and that of people around you is very important, especially when a physical altercation or attack seems possible. In cases of the physical nature, your response sometimes could be healthy or unhealthy; healthy in the sense that you are ready to forgive and forget, you have the capacity to recognize and respond to important matters, you are able to seek compromise and avoid punishing, and a belief that resolution can support the interests of both you and the offender. The unhealthy response is the direct opposite of the healthy response, add to it the expectation of bad outcomes.
Try not to be overcome by emotions and tensed. If in such a situation, make sure your body language is calm and passive, even though you’ve already beaten the person a hundred times over in your head, do not look aggressive by putting up your fists to engage them. If they have their fists up, have yours up as well but open, this signifies a passive stance against attack. Also make sure, in a very loud tone of voice, you tell the person “stay away from me”, “back off!”, etc. if they seem to be getting into your personal space. One reason for this is to appear passive and threatened at the same time and to make sure any on looker or passers-by might bear witness in your favour if the situation manages to attract the police and ever gets to court.
Another reason is in case you are in an area where CCTVs are in operation, you really need to be loud and make sure you stand where the camera can capture both you and the assailant. Now, almost all CCTV cameras do not capture sound, so Make sure your hands are up to your shoulder or chest level in a “please stay back kind of position”; one stretched longer than the other, one leg front, one leg back. When this is viewed in case of evidence, the argument will likely be in your favour, especially if your witnesses heard you warn the assailant to back off. Like I said earlier, try as much as possible not to engage with anyone in a fist brawl in public, you’ll never completely know the outcome. However, if it so happens that you have no other choice but to fight to defend yourself, here are a few tips;
- Do not start ground fighting, it’s dangerous to do so in a street fight. While you’re busy grappling and pinning each other down, he might just have knife and stab you.
- His friends could be around, join in and stomp you. I have seen it happen a lot.
- If he has a knife with him and you managed to deflect the attack and take the knife from him, depending on the laws, you have two choices, stab him with it to immobilize him or throw it far away.
- Make sure you are the first to call the police. If your assailant calls first, he is likely to become the victim and you the assailant, then you have to prove the reverse is the case.
One more thing to consider, more often than not when cases of self defense get to court, one recurring term used the “level of force” used. According to Rory Miller’s tip on a “Quick Guide to Not Being Sued” in his book “Meditations on Violence“, there’s a minimum level of force (if you know the situation can be de-escalted by talking, don’t throw a punch) and a maximum level (going all out for the kill), this one right here, in the eyes of the law makes the victim into the attacker.
So do well to check and update yourself with the legislations and laws on the use of force for self defense with your local authorities, it just might help.
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