Carrying In The Non-Permissive Environment
This will be controversial, but I think it needs to be written. I have students all over the world, in some very dangerous areas. In many of those places, there is no NRA, CCW Laws, Second Amendment, or even recognition of Human Rights. Thus far, those places are few here in the USA. Thus far.
The danger is real and I’m regaled with stories of brutality from infant rape to post-kidnapping dismemberments and other grizzly stories that would drive any sane man to carry weapons, regardless of the local laws, and be prepared to use them violently at any moment. Often, the danger is even more real if you are a pale-faced American in our current age of drug wars, terror wars, and renewed anti-Yankeeism.
Can this info be misused? Anything from beer to baseball bats can be misused. The bad guys already know this material, and it is part and parcel of their bad guy skill sets. Heck, who do you think we learned this from? Our friends who were once on the opposite side of the legal lines.
When Operating and Carrying Weapons in A Non-Permissive Environment:
First of all, be low profile. Try to fit into your environment. Don’t dress like a Yankee, or a member of a militia group. Not that there is anything wrong with either of those groups, but remember the idea is to blend in. Avoid loud clothing with bright colors or patterns and instead go for muted earth tones. Avoid the scruffy look as well. In general, neat, clean people get overlooked, dirty scruffy unshaved people get a second look. When in anti-American areas, avoid American brand clothing such as things with flags or slogans. Again, the entire idea is to dress in a way that you can easily be overlooked. Who was that grey man, or so the saying goes.
If carrying a weapon, and in many of these places you should, dress to hide it. No one looking at you should have any idea that you are carrying a weapon. Thus you don’t add the weapon to the clothing, you dress around the fact that you will have a weapon.
Photographer vests from Royal Robbins may look and be the rage on the cover of Tactical Dude Magazine, but you may as well carry openly because everyone knows its covering a gun. Same goes for baseball hats representing American tactical companies such as Glock or “certain shooting schools”. If it marks you as an armed American, do yourself a favor – get rid of it! Real operators are invisible, not poster boys for the American gun industry.
A note about weapons. Pistols of course are a fine choice if you can have one. If not, at least have a knife. Either bring one with you, or get one locally. If you cannot find a knife, get a screw driver a nice sharp Phillips screw driver. The idea is to have something with which to fight. I recall one trip to a NPE where I could not even take a Swiss army knife. As soon as I was on the ground I visited a store and bought a nice cheap and anonymous steak knife. I carried that knife with me for a week and finally ditched it in the airport bathroom prior to going through security on the way home.
Usually someone will bring up the idea of O.C. Spray. Well, here is my opinion on it. In the USA, that may be a fine idea due to various social issues, but with or without it, you must have something to back it up. You cannot OC three guys wanting to “stomp the Yankee”.
In this environment the idea of less lethal is secondary to having the ability to inflict instant and overwhelming damage on those who attack you. And that, oh gentle reader, may mean killing them.
With regard to firearms, there are some choices which are better than others. Avoid extremely expensive or “personalized” guns. Carry Mexican style. That is holster less. Why? Because if you need to discard you pistol to be instantly unarmed and not one to be paid attention to, the empty holster is as telling as the gun that it carried.
Something that is often done by those who venture into such environments routinely is to wipe all fingerprints off the cartridges and reinsert them into the magazines with gloves on. It is also interesting to note that polygonal bores such as found on certain pistols do not mark the projectile as do standard lands-and-grooves barrel. The end result is that it is more difficult to determine from which pistol a certain bullet came.
I suppose here we could also discuss the various “no weapon policy” of various private businesses and “big box” stores. We could also bring up the unfortunate girl in the parking lot of the Tyler, Texas Walmart, or the various victims of the active shooters in recent years. As well, we could bring up all the abductions and rapes that may have been prevented by the presence of a simple Spyderco. How many of the dead, or those whose lives are changed in a blink of an eye would go back and ignore those silly rules, and arm themselves.
The Spanish have a saying – “Mejor Me Traigas Tabaco En La Carcel, Que Flores Ha El Cemetario”. (Better That You Bring Me Tobacco In Jail Than Flowers To My Grave). We are all big boys and when one is playing at the levels we are discussing, the stakes are indeed high.
With regards to knives, they should be very sharp and not used for routine day to day chores. They should be hidden and remain hidden until they are needed. I’ve seen guys whip out a $300 custom folder when some soccer mom asks if anyone has a knife to open a box of cookies. Stupid.
The knife should be inexpensive and easily replaced. The idea that you may have to ditch your knife should be remembered before you choose between that high dollar custom tactical folder and the Spyderco Endura to carry in the NPE.
Finally, above the software and hardware is the background work. Have a plan, and follow it. If something goes wrong it should not surprise you but rather you should have thought of it before and planned for it. Be smart, be low profile, but be ready. Your safety and that of those around you whom you care about is in your hands alone. No one else will come to help you at such times. Have a thought out plan to escape the area and possibly the country if things get bad.