Today’s topic is covering security and self the defense. Two very broad topics that will need more in depth discussion, but for our purposes this will be a thought provoking piece.
So we’ve got our food, water, shelter and energy supplies being addressed but what if there is a relatively large-scale event and your local law enforcement’s ability to come when you call 911 is not there. It really does happen sometimes and you should have the ability to protect your self your family and your property in case help is not on the way immediately.
Whether you’re a homeowner or apartment dweller, good quality locks and deadbolts on your doors is your first line of defense. Quality locks and or blocks for your windows are the next things to look at upgrading. It’s true, locks keep honest people out and criminals will break in if they want to bad enough. Good locks will slow them down, especially if they are kept locked. A couple of years ago there was a television show that documented how criminals would select and break in to people’s homes. On several of the episodes they were able to enter the house through an unlocked window or unlocked back door, didn’t have to actually break in at all, so lock those locks. Even while your home they should be locked.
Home Security Systems can range from simple to sophisticated and in many cases will be determined by your budget. The higher end system can be monitored by an outside agency for a monthly or annual fee. The better alarm systems can even include smoke detection for fire as well as carbon monoxide detection. Adequate exterior lighting should be looked at so that you can see who’s at the front door or back door and can be equipped with motion sensors. More sophisticated security systems now offer closed-circuit camera that you can monitor over the Internet.
If you have a yard, a good quality fence to keep things in as well as out. On larger pieces of property there are numerous barrier plants that could be considered depending on your climate zone. Plants like Thorny Pyracantha, Hawthorn, Holly or the simple Black Berry bush planted on your property line or fencerows would deter people and or animals from crossing easily.
A dog in many cases is a good investment not only for companionship but security as well. If you can afford the cost of up keep, vet and immunizations, and have time to spend doing some basic training, a dog can bring years of pleasure. Their sense of hearing and smell does not need electricity to alert you if someone’s creeping around outside. Big dogs can offer some personal protection if properly trained and the right breed but smaller breeds of dogs can hold their own as well.
If you have never owned a dog, the decision is a big one, almost like the decision to purchase a gun. With ownership of either comes responsibility to invest time in research, training and selection before spending any money on either. If you do decide to get a dog, I encourage you to check with your local rescue groups and animal shelters first before spending the money on a pure breed show dog.
From a personal standpoint your physical fitness is an important consideration should you need to defend yourself from an attacker at some time. Many people choose to study one of the styles of martial arts. Martial arts classes are an excellent way to improve your physical condition to get into shape so I encourage you to check with friends may have taken classes in the past or look for recommendations on who are the better instructors in your area and get out and take a class. Just simple walking a mile or so every couple of days will improve your stamina and conditioning. There other sports that will get you into shape like hiking, backpacking, swimming, canoeing, snow skiing and bicycling to name some of my favorites.
Now let’s talk about weapons for self-defense. Before we get into the specifics of which weapon is better for what, you need to seek training from qualified instructors. I don’t know about your area or town but in mine there are at least a dozen reputable gun stores and gun ranges within 20 miles of my home. These are the people you need to seek out for information, instruction and price comparisons.
There are non lethal alternatives such as pepper spray and stun type weapons that are legal in most places in these United States for anyone to own and have in their home for self-defense. As always the disclaimer, check your local laws before purchasing. But really baseball bats and golf clubs are not good ideas for self defense except as a last resort, you need a little bit more but some distance between you and an intruder.
In the opinion of many “Experts” the ideal weapon for home defense is a shotgun. A visit to your local gun shop or range can help educate you in the selection and style and gauge that fits you best. The nice thing about shotgun is it can be used for hunting so it really dual-purpose tool we covered hunting very briefly in another post but with a shotgun in most parts of the country you can hunt small game like birds, squirrels and rabbits with one type of shotgun shell and larger game like deer with buckshot.
A handgun or pistol is probably another consideration for home protection. They come in all sizes shapes calibers and manufacturers and before you select one spend some time at several gun shops and do the research. Try out several different styles, calibers and manufacturer’s if possible at a local range before you make your decision. Training is an absolute necessity and should be sought very early in the process on how to handle, clean and safely operate the handgun.
As far as other weapons for self-defense to mention baseball bats, batons, knifes, swords, numb chucks, crossbow, bows and arrows tomahawks, axes, slings, chainsaws sticks and rocks……should we go on….but they’re really not practical for self-defense although that could be used if necessary.