Excerpt taken from an article in the ‘Telegraph Sunday Magazine’ London, November 1981
After asserting that a man who preys on society has “signed his own release”, the Colonel raised a giggle amoung the students with what Americans like to call typical British understatement. “When a man is trying to shoot you, he gets your attention”, he said, adding: “Fortunately, the creeps of this world are generally bad shots”.
At the mid-morning break the students strolled out to their cars and tents udner the juniper trees. Some started practicing the “compressed surprise break” (the Colonel’s version of the quick draw). Others lovingly oiled their guns or studied a booklet outlining the Colonel’s seven basic principles of self-defence. These are alertness, decisiveness, aggressiveness, coolness (“self-control is the one thing the sociopath does not usually posess; use yours to his undoing”), ruthlessness and surprise (the criminal does not expect his prey to fight back).
The helpful hints which amplify these principles might seem the very stuff of paranoia: let no stranger grasp your hand when on the street, for that might give him a fatal advantage; do not enter unfamiliar areas you cannot observe first; make it a practice to swing wide on corners; use window glass for rear visibility, and try to get something behind you when you pause; remember that a blow with your closed fist may only succeed in wrecking your hand and that a finger in the eye is easier, safer and likely to be more decisive.
While training people to fight violence with violence might seem a debatable proposition at best, many Americans are against any strengthening of their present almost non-existent gun controls. The National Rifle Association can quickly mobilize compliant Congressmen against anything they judge a threat to the prevailing gun culture. Even simple registration, they feel might ultimately lead to confiscation of their cherished firearms.
The Colonel says he sees an expanding market for the kind of instruction he gives.
“The predominant problem today I suppose, is disenchantment with the entire public sector. We’re getting the notion that the government can’t do anything.
“Once you lose a war, your credibility is shot. We couldn’t beat a two-bit insurrection in Southeast Asia, so what can we do? what this means is that perhaps we should do it ourselves.
“As of today, the private citizen has got to look out for himself”.