The photographer requested the pics to be removed. Apparently telling women how not to be victims is somehow unpalatable to her and her followers. I am a polite chap so I did and click here to see my reply .

My approach in shooting the portraits was to create a community experience. I set up open calls for women and female-identifying individuals to have their photographs taken holding whatever made them feel most safe walking home alone.

Source: Photography — Taylor Yocom





And save the whistles for a party.

Now, good for you for at least thinking about not being 100% victim and have at least the mental willingness to fight back. Now the bad news: You are doing it wrong. Good news: It can be fixed. Here are my thoughts. You can take them or leave them and asses them as anything else you get out of the Internet: With a huge grain of salt.

You need a weapon, belay that: weapons, plural. I won’t go into getting a firearm because most “places of higher learning” will not allow them and will get medieval on you while they may turn a blind eye on other weapons. It is also your responsibility to stay within the confines of the law. Make sure that whatever I mention below, is legal where you live. That onus is on you, not mine.

Before I go any further: whatever preparation or tool you decide to take, keep it to yourself. Do not advertise you are carrying the means to defend yourself. people do not need to know, many run their lives on envy and will snitch on you. And we don’t want a potential bad guy to come up with a counter technique that renders your protection useless, right?

Now, pepper spray is fine as long as it is a good brand and not a keychain accessory.  yes, I went ahead and poo-pooed on the other half of the pictures. Exception made for the two ladies carrying the Kimber Pepperblaster which is a darn good product. If your pepper spray came from a gift shop or gas station, chances are not only it won’t perform as needed but it may already be degraded by age. You can bet an Honest-to-God-My-Face-Is-Melting from a reputable online police supply like Galls. They come in spray, stream and foam, investigate what each means with their advantages and disadvantages applied to your lifestyle.  And above all remember: They may not work after all if the attacker is under the influence. Remember I said above you need weapons, plural?

Strike weapons: Anything that can be used to inflict pain and damage via strike is always good. From the simple Monkey Knuts keychain to the ASP p 12 collapsible baton, tools that can be hidden without much effort. A good tactical flashlight can be used both as a distraction device and impact weapon whenever is dark. Buy the ones made of aluminum and with a rating of 200 lumens and above. They are not cheap, but a good dose of light to the eyes of an attacker at night will cause him pain and blind the crap out of him. And you can use the light (specially if it has cannelures) to beat him on his face hard enough to make him re-evaluate his options. If they can’t see, it gets harder do hurt you.

Knives: here we are getting to an area as close as guns in the area of being punished by Administration for violating the rules of subjugation.  But knives have an advantage over the weapons above: If you are already in full contact with your attacker, the knife requires less energy and movement to inflict harm.  Knives come in fixed blades and folding blades (and these you need to make sure the blade locks open so it does not fold when you need it) and there is an amazing variety of them in the market. Although full size Bowie knife would probably be a game-ender in most cases by just displaying it (That ain’t a knife. This is a knife) the reality is that you will need something on small and concealable. One type is what they call the Neck Knife as it is carried under clothing around the neck with a lanyard. I would probably choose the smallest fixed blade I could find and use properly.

Next are the folding knives. And I am not talking about your traditional Red Swiss Army knife or your great-grandpa case that requires the use of both hands to open it, but knives that the blade can be extended with one hand. There are different ways knife makers approach this as you can see in this video. Most, if not all come with a clip to secure the knife inside a pocket or to your waistband and many good knives (Kershaw & Spyderco) are being sold under $40 in places like WalMart.

What else? Get training, specially for baton and knife. In fact, you’d probably find a school that carries both. Check Security Officer Schools also for baton training. That does not mean you should be unarmed till you get the training, but your performance will be better with training.

The hardest thing you will need to train on is your defensive mindset. We are good people, we do not like to inflict pain or damage anybody and that is the way to live. But when your life is being threatened, you cannot afford to think that way. You don’t pull back your punches or stabs and you do not give the attacker ” a chance” because you are not playing a sport but defending your body and life. There is this little book from the 80s titled Principles of Personal Defense by Col. Jeff Cooper, it is politically incorrect (Cooper was the epitome of un-pc) by standards held by many today, but it is the best resource you’ll ever have to start developing a self-defense mindset:

A victim who fights back makes the whole business impractical. It is true that a victim who fights back may suffer for it, but one who does not almost certainly will suffer for it. And, suffer or not, the one who fights back retains his dignity and his self-respect……But many men who are not cowards are simply unprepared for the fact of human savagery. They have not thought about it (incredible as this may appear to anyone who reads the paper or listens to the news) and they just don’t know what to do. When they look right into the face of depravity or violence, they are astonished and confounded. This can be corrected.

Stay Safe.

PS: If somebody tells you not to arm yourself because the weapon can be used against you, do me a favor and use him/her as training dummy. Get your prefered tool and ask him/her to attack you and then inflict enough pain so they never say that stupidity ever again 😀

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By Miguel.GFZ

Semi-retired like Vito Corleone before the heart attack. Consiglieri to J.Kb and AWA. I lived in a Gun Control Paradise: It sucked and got people killed. I do believe that Freedom scares the political elites.

14 thoughts on “Seriously, put the keys away. ”
  1. The one plus side of keys is no one thinks of them as a weapon–in fact they don’t give them a second look at all. And in keeping with yesterday’s post about the mind being the weapon, and all else is just tools, keys and the right mindset is preferable to keys and the wrong mindset, or no mindset at all.

    I think no one can argue that the right tool for the right job is preferred. And keys are not the right tool for the job of self defense, but in a pinch, they’d make an acceptable improvised tool.

    Still, your post is spot on.

    I never understood the whole concept of accepting that self defense is okay with some sort of improvised tool, but don’t you dare use the very tool that is designed for self defense and is the current pinnacle of self defense tools. Nope, go ahead use some other, less useful, tool.

  2. Careful with the Neck Knife and things like it. In some jurisdictions a concealed fixed blade can be a felony (California for example).

  3. These are not your images to use on this site, regardless of whether you credit the author or not. Try to work at producing your own content instead of scavenging the hard work of others and removing their work from the context in which it belongs.

  4. Take down these images upon the artist’s request. All of the images are copyrighted and not permitted for your use.

  5. You took a powerful art project and placed it out of context to voice your own agenda. You need to take these photos down. The artist requested their removal and to take someone’s art project and attempt to re-frame it for your personal use is awful. If you want photos to use to aid you in justifying victim blaming, take your own.

    1. He didnt “steal” anything. He attributed the images and article to the appropriate authors and disagreed in part with the premise. In other words. He gave alternatives and you whiners need to go find the nearest playground and go pound sand.

  6. Don’t steal a talented artist’s hard work (which is also copyrighted by the artist) to promote your own cause. Whether you credit her or not, it’s legally still theft. Shame on you!

    1. This is not “stolen.” Learn what the terms “fair use” mean. Also, “commentary.”

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