Is Psychological Impotence in the Face of Violent Crime Really the Answer?
A further link on the news story took me to a page on "No nonsense self-defense" where I learned that the average person doesn't have what it takes to fight back against a carjacker:
If you argue or resist a carjacker, the odds are you will be shot.
Like all robbers, the carjacker has come to the situation ready, willing and able to commit violence. While it may seem "it comes out of the blue" to you, the carjacker already has prepared himself to commit violence. You are literally playing against a stacked deck. Everything he needs to commit serious violence is in place at the same time you are surprised and shocked.
Unfortunately, most people have never faced such raw, unbridled violence. They suddenly find themselves dragged out of their normal, everyday parameters of existence and thrown into a strange -- and dangerous -- alien landscape. It's a place where none of the rules they are accustomed to apply. An effective strategy to "defend your space" under normal circumstances could in this instant get your brains blown into a fine pink mist.
Your normal defenses are not enough. Words, anger or outrage are insufficient to protect yourself against someone committed to violence. It is nearly impossible for the average citizen to effectively defend himself when confronted in such a wild and unexpected manner. To go instantly from thinking about scheduling the day or what you are going to have for dinner to the killing savagery necessary to overcome an armed opponent is beyond even most trained martial artists. And by the time you could muster enough outrage to effectively defend yourself, the carjacker would have long since pulled the trigger.
Have you noticed that most of the tips you get in recent years for how to survive a violent crime involve an accompanying psychological maneuver of first trying to make you feel impotent? And instead of suggesting remedies to overcome this impotence, these survival tips usually just tell you to give the criminal what they want. But what they typically don't say is that you can get killed using that approach also. Jeff Cooper has a whole different approach to surviving violence--as I recall in one of his books, he talks about the use of color codes for getting one in the psychological mindset to deal with violence:
I forget when I first dreamed up the color code, but it was a long time ago. I have been teaching it and preaching it, practically forever, but I never seem to have got it across! The color code is not a means of assessing danger or formulating a tactical solution. It is rather a psychological means of overcoming your innate reluctance to shoot a man down. Normal people have a natural and healthy mental block against delivering the irrevocable blow. This is good, but in a gunfight it may well get you killed. The color code enables you to change your state of mind by three steps, each of which enables you to overcome your mental block and take lifesaving action.
There is no easy answer to what to do when confronted with a violent crime--certainly, it seems best to avoid a crime if possible by being aware of one's surroundings etc. But once violence is in front of you, passivity is not always the answer. Remember, the criminal has a script in his mind too--that is, that you will not fight back. The element of surprise can work just as effectively for law abiding citizens who are willing to do whatever it takes to save their own lives or that of a loved one.