Recently, a local man was kidnapped, robbed and murdered by two people he met on Craig's List, he thought were interested in purchasing his car. It brought to mind safety concerns. Are we assuming we are safe? My friend, David, posted this, I thought I would share here. I agree with most of his; however, I don't carry a concealed weapon, but I do have mace, a personal keychain alarm, etc. Which, I think if I was ever in this position, would help me, being I would never meet anyone I didn't know unless a public, well-occupied place.
Seeing a lot of posts this morning about the tragedy. It's something he apparently had done many times before. Certainly, this is a loss for his family that no one should experience. I think what people don't understand is that the world is inherently unsafe. You are not safe. We have all been conditioned to believe in the illusion of safety, which is not serving us. Ultimately YOU are responsible for your safety, NOT the cops, NOT the government, NOT the security at whatever store where you happen to be shopping. It's on you. As someone who has been studying this stuff for several years, I am happy to provide some tips:
1) Have an awareness: Of your surroundings, the people in them, and possible escape routes. At all times. Don't walk around with your head in your phone, don't walk around in a fog. Look around.
Use your 5 senses. It's simple.
2) Know your limits and improve upon them: Are you easily overpowered? Can you fight? If the answer's no, learn how. Are you physically unable to defend yourself? There are plenty of options if you cannot (including number 4, below).
3) Research: If you are going to meet somebody, make sure you have a full name and the location where they live or from where they are coming. Then, use the wonderful device you are sitting in front of to research said person. Most people's info is just a Google search and a few clicks away. It has a file on each of you (haha, but seriously...).
4) Obtain, train with, and carry your weapon: Legally, within the confines of your local laws, please do this. Emphasis on safety and train, train, train. If you carry a lethal (or non-lethal) weapon, you'd better be training with it. Most people are not, including most Law Enforcement Officers, which is among the many reasons why we are having some of the problems we have.
Every time I go to do one of my Internet sales deals in the parking lot of a Walmart, I am carrying. I make sure I am in plain view of lots of witnesses, and that there are cameras trained on the area. If convenient, I have backup, who is also armed, sitting in the car. It doesn't matter how much trust I the person I am meeting. Even with all of these things in place, it is impossible for me to be 100% safe. This is the risk I am accepting. However, we can decrease the risk by taking the aforementioned steps. Grab a coffee and Google up some stories of parking lot deals gone wrong. Get ready to read for at least an hour. Stay safe out there and please, please, use the senses with which you were gifted at birth to develop and practice awareness.