Dads, don’t make this common mistake when dealing with bullies

Nobody knows how to do anything until they learn how. Is this a really big secret?

If you watch someone else perform some amazing feat that you can’t do, do you think that person is just naturally more talented than you are, or do you realize that at least part of the difference is that person learned how to perform the feat?

It turns out that some people believe one way, and some the other. People who assume that you have to just be innately talented to perform tend to be under-performers. That’s called a “fixed mindset”. People who realize that they can learn how to do things they don’t know how to do yet, if they put in the time and effort, have what’s called a “growth mindset”. They tend to be better performers.

There’s one more possibility, and it’s worse than the “fixed mindset”: people who assume they can do anything anyone else can do, without any training, until they prove themselves wrong. That’s over-confidence, or unrealistic expectations. It usually involves a big ego.

There’s a common meme in books, television, and movies aimed at children or young adults that they can do anything as long as they believe in themselves. Without having to learn how, or work for it.

Headline news: Teen hospitalized after dad made him confront school bully, police say

Why this is a horrible idea:

  • What if the bully is bigger, armed, or part of a gang?
  • What if the bully knows how to fight better, likely because he gets more practice?
  • How is the victim supposed to know how to defend himself, before he learns?
  • What if the victim gets the blame because the bully is a designated sympathy figure, or the teacher’s pet?
  • This idea wasn’t the result of a rational thought process, weighing costs and benefits; it was made emotionally.
  • Isn’t the dad’s ego what’s really at stake?!

What if the bully isn’t another boy, but a girl? Bullying is probably about sexual rivalry, so it’s mostly same-sex, but to be frank, not every kid is conventionally-gendered. I’ve witnessed girl-on-boy bullying, and I suspect it’s becoming more common because the girls get positive reinforcement from boy-loathing feminist teachers. If he fights back, he is almost certain to get into big trouble for it. He probably also has chivalrous instincts not to hit a girl, and even if he doesn’t, he’s almost certainly been told as much. What’s he supposed to do, just take it? What do you suppose that does to his self-esteem?

  • First, boys have to endure the torture of girl bullies.
  • Second, the lack of discussion about it gives female bullies the green light to bully boys even more.
  • Third, the lack of discussion sends boys a clear message: girls hurting boys is acceptable, and not important enough to obliterate.

As a result, boys tend to endure the torture of girl bullies in silence, which can lead to tragedy.Boys Don't Tell on Sugar-and-Spice-but-Not-So-Nice Girl Bullies, by Sabrina Brinson

Do this instead:

  • Investigate.
  • Put safety considerations first.
  • Escalate if the situation is beyond your ability to resolve it.
  • Take care of your son’s (or daughter’s) emotional needs. Kids who are bullied sometimes commit suicide. Even if they don’t, they’re likely to end up with low self-esteem and depression.
  • Proactively warn your kids about aggression from others, and teach them what their own rights are.
  • Send your sons (& daughters) for martial arts training. Don’t expect him to know something before he learns how. Do this proactively, before he needs to know.
  • Martial arts training usually only covers fighting techniques, NOT strength-building to be able to credibly deliver them. I suggest combining martial arts training with “combat conditioning” type exercise (not weight-training, which doesn’t train brain-body coordination; the motion is too simple and too repetitive).

This is an example of combat-conditioning, not necessarily an endorsement; I am not qualified to judge its effectiveness (I do yoga), tho the trainer does look pretty fit:

Burpees are also known as “prison push-ups”; the idea is they don’t take special equipment or much space, and guys in prison do them to stay conditioned so they don’t get beat up.

Aside from teaching boys how to defend themselves, martial arts training is useful for teaching them how to control their own aggression. Boys who learn to fight ironically end up in fewer fights, and are less likely to start one.

I’ve been thinking a lot about “fathering” as opposed to androgynous “parenting”. Do fathers have a specific role in the lives of their offspring, or are we just superfluous, junior undersecretary assistant moms?! The latter is the modern assumption, which I suspect is a big mistake, and the reason so many dads don’t know what to do. If you want to be a dad, not a junior undersecretary assistant mom, then you need to take care of security matters, which means not just assuming they’ll magically take care of themselves after stating an uninformed opinion on the matter.

More generally, it means the one who faces the dark side of life squarely. When I raised my first batch of kids, I trained them to respect the rights of others; I told them to “be good”, because that’s what had been drilled into my own head when I was a boy. It didn’t occur to me that it was equally important to teach them what their own rights are, because nobody ever told me that. Teaching both responsibilities, and own rights, is probably one of the most important things dads should be doing.

You might be interested in…

The knockout game is back.

The “knockout game” is back. That’s when young hoodlums make a game out of sucker-punching an unsuspecting victim, trying to knock him or her out with one blow. They do it to score admiration from their peers. If you’ve seen crime-surveillance video of one of these attacks, you might notice other hoodlums standing nearby watching the action. Sometimes they rob the incapacitated victim, or pose with the victim for selfies!

At least one case I have heard of resulted in the death of the victim.

Both men and women have been attacked, and even the elderly.

I expect attacks like these to get worse as social breakdown continues.

Take action:

  • If you haven’t had self-defense training and in particular situational-awareness training, get some.
  • You can find low-cost, online classes in basic self-defense, through venues like Udemy.com. Something is better than nothing. They can teach you enough to save your life.
  • If you have the resources, consider serious, in-person self-defense training.
  • Encourage your loved ones to do the same. Warn them about the danger.

 

 

 

Warning for November 4th, 2017

These handbills, and a similar version, are all over riot-prone neighborhoods of Seattle. I ran into them coming back from lunch to pick up my wife.

Newsweek calls reports of the events a “right-conspiracy theory” (sic). If they mention them at all after they happen, they’ll be construed as “peaceful protests” even if they turn into riots as is likely given that Antifa has been caught distributing information about makeshift weapons, and some members caught on camera showing off firearms.

Here is a list of cities where events are planned.

The posters and the organizational website explicitly state that regime-change is planned. There might actually be one, but it won’t be events in the street that overthrow the current administration; it would more likely be a high-level coup, and it will take a while to materialize. Roger Stone is on record in several broadcasts saying that a plan is afoot for staging a coup via a phoney indictment from Robert Mueller (in order to set the president up for an impeachment), and Stephen Bannon was recently quoted as saying that he estimates the president has about a 30% chance of finishing his term.

The purpose of having Antifa AND OTHER GROUPS on the streets is to create the illusion that the coup is actually a popular revolution. This is standard operating procedure for staging what are popularly known as COLOR REVOLUTIONS.

Stay away. Mixing it up with Antifa and its allies won’t help the president, the country, or anybody else; it will only get spun by the media to create sympathy for the RIOTERS.

If you live in one of the cities where events are planned, plan any and all travel to avoid likely locations for riots. Warn your family and friends. The news media is covering up and misleading.

STAY SAFE. KEEP YOUR FAMILY AND FRIENDS SAFE.

Breaking…mass shooting in Las Vegas

UPDATE

Shooter named as Steven Paddock. Had multiple shooting tripods set up. His companion has been captured or at least located.

UPDATE

Fire department scanner:

25 transported & 1 DOA

16 transported & 1 DOA

50 transported & 20 DOA

UPDATE

Reports of casualties at the Tropicana.

UPDATE

Suspicious events elsewhere in the city and more reports of multiple shooters. Possibly evidence of an organized attack.

Multiple shooters. You can hear it clearly multiple streams of fire (or echoes, but most people seem to think it’s multiple shooters, 2 or 3) in the videos shot from cell phones. Fully automatic weapons, aimed at crowds attending an outdoor concert at the Mandalay hotel on the strip.

Multiple casualties. “People being hauled off in backs of pickup trucks”. “Girl shot in head”.

My sad condolences for the grievously wounded and family-and-friends of victims.

I’ve been dreading this. No reports of who did this or what the motive was as of this writing, but things like this didn’t used to happen. We’re clearly in a social breakdown situation, even while the economy is relatively intact. Too much social tension and animosity. Too many loose cannons. And they inspire each other.

It’s going to get worse. Stay safe!

You’re on your own against terror & immigrant crime

Don’t beg the one who put the contract on your head to save you.

First let me express my grief for the deaths and grievous injuries of mostly young people at the concert in Manchester, UK. My heart is with their family and friends.

Remembering British victims of terrorism does not imply lack of sympathy for victims of terrorism elsewhere, which I have been and will continue to be vocal about, so please enough of the vindictive accusations and unhelpful virtue-signaling.

Now let me be frank: no amount of expressing your desire that your government “do something” about terrorism and immigrant crime is going to help. The British government is a known sponsor of ISIS/Daesh/Islamic State. This is the worst-kept secret in the world, so I’m not going to attempt to prove it; you either accept the plain fact or not.

Americans see warfare as a finite undertaking, but conflicts of this nature can go on for many years. our jihadist foes see the struggle as one that began centuries ago and that will continue until Judgment Day. Some in the United States warn of an unending war.

Fifteen Years on, Where Are We in the ‘War on Terror’?
Brian Michael Jenkins, RAND Corp (the CIA’s think-tank)

The “war on terror” is an “unending war” because it’s part of a long-term plan to effect dramatic change in our culture, legal system, wealth pyramid, and demographics. It’s scripted history, not a spontaneous event.

Late model Toyotas supplied by US State Dept.

Other known state sponsors of ISIS include Saudi Arabia (where the president of the United States was just paying his respects), Qatar, Israel (where it is openly-admitted they have treated ISIS wounded in their hospitals), Turkey (where their supply lines run), France, and the United States.

Some Brits are calling on the spirit of Margaret Thatcher. The same woman who sent secret messages to her counterparts in the Soviet Union telling them to ignore her public denunciations of the “Evil Empire”, and to maintain their iron grip on eastern Europe. That Margaret Thatcher.

She was also involved in a cover-up of a pedophile ring in her own party. THAT Margaret Thatcher. Corrupt and devious, just like the rest of them.

“Shouldn’t we be supporting ISIS?”

People in Europe and North America need to come to terms with the fact that their ruling classes don’t love them. They love their country estates, the services of their immigrant domestic staff, their jet-set lifestyles, their hookers, catamites, sex-slaves, and blow.

Stop looking to your governments to protect you; they’re the ones you need protection from!

 

 

  • They secretly sponsor ISIS.
  • They snuck ISIS cells into your country, using your own sympathy for “refugees” who aren’t really refugees and aren’t really from Syria.
  • They’re eventually going to use ISIS against YOU.
  • They’re actively supressing dissent against their policies.

You need to take responsibility for your own defense. Be your own hero.

  • Obtain means of self-defense. Use your own good judgment to decide what that means.
  • Get self-defense training, including situational awareness.
  • Avoid discretionary travel through congested, high-visibility areas.
  • Avoid likely targets
  • START HAVING BABIES! How are you going to defend yourselves once you are hopelessly outnumbered?!

Unfortunately guns and ammo are no good against sneak bomb attacks, and they’re restricted in most of Europe and parts of the USA (to the police and military, who won’t defend you). Get gun training where guns are legal, and seek alternatives where they are not. I also suggest getting generic self-defense training. Just learning situational awareness can help especially in cases of one-on-one immigrant crime situations.

The second step is avoiding targeted places and events. Of course if you have to commute to work you can’t avoid buses and subways, but you can make a conscious decision to reduce discretionary travel especially through temptingly congested locations. Want to meet with your friends? Pick a low-key venue and get there on foot or by car.

“I hate Americans. I hate America.”

Avoid big rock concerts. Why would anyone want to see Ariana Grande anyway? She has a potty mouth, says she hates Americans, and licks donuts she hasn’t paid for. As an aside, why doesn’t she just move to Venezuela? Why do America-haters think they can adopt the policies of a 3rd-world hellhole without the country turning into one?

I have a feeling it’s just a matter of time before sporting venues are hit. There’s already been a “credible threat” of an attack on a German soccer stadium. Sorry, but you’d better avoid big sporting events too.

No exotic vacations either, especially not to big cities in Europe and North America. One of the victims of the recent Times Square rampage was a young tourist from overseas.

I am well aware that the probability of dying in a terrorist attack is low. That’s not the point. The point is making a conscious choice to resist victimization. That brings up another sore point: right now our masters are encouraging us to go about as if nothing happened. That’s not resisting; that’s capitulation. Taking matters into your own hands gives you a feeling of control. The whole point of terrorism is to scare the sheep so that their emotions overwhelm their ability to think rationally and creatively.

Aside from safety issues, boycotting big-ticket discretionary spending will also keep more money in your own hands, and out of the hands of big business and big government, who are not your friends.

I’ll miss the sea, but a person needs new experiences. They jar something deep inside, allowing him to grow. Without change something sleeps inside us, and seldom awakens. The sleeper must awaken.

Duke Leo Atreides, Dune

May Day! May Day!

May Day rally poster

One of my adult sons got caught in a demonstration while trying to get to work the Saturday before May Day. He has to put in a lot of late nights and weekends, but the demonstrators have the day off. There was no immediate threat; he was just delayed getting to work. The demonstrations and riots are happening fairly regularly now, not just on special occasions.

My take is that George Soros still has plenty of money, and he still hates President Trump. The riots aren’t going away any time soon.

ZeroHedge has a post by Mac Slavo about Antifa’s recent activities.

Accompanying the article is a photo of a man getting punched by an Antifa member. The man getting punched is wearing an American flag cape. I don’t know what it’s made from, but it is unwise to wear capes, or any costume at all, to a rumble, or something that might turn into a rumble. You don’t want a prop that someone could grab you by, especially if one end is attached to your throat. That’s a possible way of getting strangled.

I advise against participating in public demonstrations, counter-demonstrations, or rallies, because I don’t want you getting hurt. Demonstrations are pointless; they’re not effective ways of changing policies. It might seem as though they’re sometimes successful, but what’s really going on is that someone has ordered changes from behind the scenes, then funded a rent-a-mob to create the illusion that the changes are the result of popular demand. If the rent-a-mob turns violent, so much the better to “respond to” as a pretext for radical change. But the point is that the demonstration or riot didn’t really initiate the change; the real action was taking place behind the scenes and involved big money.

That said, if you’re going to express an opinion in public that might attract violent protesters or counter-protesters, at least be prepared for trouble.

  • Do not provoke or initiate! (the biased news media will still claim you started it with your “violent rhetoric”, but don’t make it easy for them)
  • Defend, but do not escalate!
  • Don’t wear loose clothing—including t-shirts!around your throat.
  • Maintain a high degree of situational awareness.
  • Don’t get cocky.
  • Keep in mind some rioters have guns. Is your life insurance paid up?
  • Respect the police! Let the other side bring the wrath of hell down on their heads instead of yours.

Here are some tips about surviving street fights from Brett McCay.

 

Trigglypuff vs ISIS: which side to take in the Clash of Civilizations

Here is a story I heard when I was a boy:

One Saturday morning, a young Meyer Lansky’s parents gave him money to take to synagogue. He took the money, but instead of heading to synagogue, he headed to a back-alley where he knew that gambling was going on. There he learned an important lesson about playing other people’s games that I will share with you.

He imagined that he was going to win some more money. Instead, he promptly lost it all!

But rather than getting too upset over it, Lansky decided to keep watching other boys play. He started noticing a pattern: often things would start out with the gamblers winning a few games, but then “luck” would turn against them, and they’d keep losing until they lost all their money.

Oddly enough, it’s the losses that trigger “gambler’s fever”: the gamblers convince themselves that they need to keep playing to “win it all back again”.

The gamblers assume that’s even a possibility. They get so wrapped up in greed and the excitement of the game that they fail to notice the pattern of early wins followed by losses, or to think about what might be causing that pattern to exist. It’s obviously not random, nor is it caused by the skill of the players, since they can’t control it.

I’ll have to bring this story up again in another context, because it teaches us something about investing money. In that context, the “House” is the investment bank that’s underwriting securitized “assets”. But the story also teaches us something about the winners and losers of history.

Something you need to know about the pundit class is that they can’t really predict the future. First of all, they’re not the geniuses they make themselves out to be; they’re paid talking-heads who spout whatever nonsense their bosses tell them to. Nassim Taleb calls them “Intellectual Yet Idiots”. Their bosses aren’t geniuses either; they’re billionaires who have geniuses working for them behind the scenes trying to make their ideas work. The “Machiavellian trait”, which refers to a habit of concealing true goals and motives behind elaborate deceptions, is often mistaken for genius by people who don’t realize what’s really going on. But even if they were geniuses, the natural unfolding of events is chaotic in the sense that small changes propagate into big differences in outcomes.

The way that the winners of history work around that problem is by recruiting huge numbers of dupes to unwittingly work towards the same goal. That reduces the effects of chaos through having billions of butterflies all trying to start the same hurricane!

The way that the winners of history recruit their dupes is by:

  • Coming up with a narrative.
  • Create a “counter-narrative” that leads to the same outcome as the narrative, in order to create the illusion of choice.
  • On the rare occasions someone is smart enough to come up with a real alternative narrative that reaches a possible tipping point, capture it through bribes, threats, assassinations, and/or sabotage.
  • Have pseudo-intellectuals on your payroll “predict” the official narrative and the counter-narrative in journals popular among influencers such as college instructors and media pundits.
  • Commission books and movie and television scripts where the narrative shows up in the story-line in a slightly disguised, but “isomorphic”, form. A good example of this would be the original book and play “War of the Worlds”, which was designed to prime US and British audiences for WW2. The blood-drinking “Martians” were intended to trigger associations to WW1 posters depicting Germans as vampires. Later, once the target audience has internalized the narrative, it can show up in popular media without needing any disguise.
  • Stage some events that seem to provide evidence of the narrative unfolding.
  • Flood the news-stream with the narrative and the counter-narrative. Most people will now accept politicians acting on the narrative, even though it is completely artificial.
  • Dupes will even start contributing to the narrative by acting in ways consistent with the narrative. For example, if the narrative is “Clash of Civilizations”, some Muslims will start cooperating by actually staging suicide bombings without even being paid. Of course, spontaneous suicide bombings are more unpredictable than the staged ones, but this isn’t necessarily that much of a problem if you’re not concerned about collateral damage.
Audiences already primed to believe the official narrative will interpret staged events as evidence.

An example of this phenomenon on a smaller scale was when black ops personnel from various parts of the former British Empire were caught staging terrorist attacks in Iraq, in order to manifest the predicted Sunni-Shi’a civil war. The point was not to predict a civil war in order to prevent it, but rather, to intentionally create a self-fulfilling prophesy, and help it along a little with the false-flag operations.

Winners of history don’t commit to either side of the controlled conflicts that they set up. The point of controlled conflicts is not that one side or the other wins, but that a 3rd party “with no skin in the game” (as Taleb would say) wins.  They do favor one side or the other just because of asymmetric costs and benefits, but even if a miracle should happen and the “post-Christian, Modernist/Postmodernist Snowflake” side wins, we’d still end up kissing their asses just like our ancestors have been for the last few centuries, until they figure out a more effective way to rid themselves of us. What I’m saying is that no amount of ass-kissing will make them love you. ISIS doesn’t love you either. The only way to win this game is not to play by the rule-book someone else handed you.

Now let me explain one more phenomenon. Machiavellian personality types routinely conceal their motives, attitudes, and goals behind benevolent-sounding pretexts. When a politician states a position on any given “issue”, you can reasonably suspect that their “position” is a matter of opportunism, not a deeply-held conviction.

It’s important that you understand my meaning here. I am NOT talking about when the politician’s “real position” is the opposite of what they claim it is. That only happens when the costs and benefits are consistently one-sided, like when a greedy kleptocrat hides behind Socialist public positions. I’m saying that, more commonly, they don’t have any fixed position at all; how they respond in any particular case depends on context and opportunities.

Dr. Elizabeth Warren
Machiavellian personality types routinely conceal their motives, attitudes, and goals behind benevolent-sounding pretexts.

If a politician claims to be for or against any given policy, that means nothing at all other than that their polling agency thinks they can win some points with that particular public position. If they can’t win enough points, then they will predictably avoid taking a public position, seed their press conferences with reporters who ask only pre-approved questions, and evade questions if the topic does come up. Inside the privacy of their own minds, their actual response to any given specific case depends on the political costs and benefits. That’s why they speak up loudly on one case, and are quiet about another. There’s no mystery here. Most people either don’t notice the pattern, or if they do, waste their time trying to score points by pointing out the other side’s hypocrisy, as if anyone who matters cares. “Consistency is the hobgobblin of small minds!”

As applied to the “clash of civilizations”, or any other conflict or war, it’s the same thing. As dupes have taken sides, lining up variously as Islamists, anti-Islamists, multiculturalists—whatever, doesn’t matter—all sides are being manipulated by the puppetmasters, and all “positions” or choices lead to the same outcomes: wholesale population replacement in Europe and North America, ethnic and religious cleansing in Syria, partitioning and annexation of Syrian lands, and a puppet government installed in Iran. It doesn’t matter which horse in the game you place your bets on; the game is rigged, and the House wins.

Donald Trump's photo.
Captured opposition. “I am a nationalist AND a globalist.” Total capitulation in 90 days.

When people think that they’re opting out by jumping onto the bandwagon of an “opposition” political party, more likely, they are opting in to controlled opposition. Political parties are not allowed to exist if they represent a real alternative to the narrative: their leaders get assassinated, delegitimatized, bribed, threatened, and/or put in prison. No matter how far they get before being neutered, up to now they have all been either destroyed or captured. Even supposedly “radical” or “outlaw” parties tend to have goals that are functionally identical with those of the mainstream; they are simply framed differently. For example, the only nationalist parties tolerated in Europe are the ones that willingly help the globalists by advocating for programs of assimilation of immigrants. That helps the immigrants get jobs faster, which displaces more native workers, and frees up welfare budgets to accommodate still more immigrants.

There was an old saying in Monte Carlo: “Whether you bet on black or red, White always wins”. “White” referred to the owner of the casino, a man named Blanc (“white” in French).

Now for another story.

A man stumbled out of a gambling den, broke and a bit drunk. He spotted one of his friends standing outside, smoking, and struck up a conversation.

“Ya know, this house is run by crooks,” said his friend. “The games are rigged.”

“Then why do you play?” asked the other gambler.

The friend looked slightly scandalized and said “It’s the only game in town!”

Massacred 69 blue-eyed Norwegians in the name of saving Europe.

Now to answer the question: which side should you be on? YOUR OWN, of course! Stop jumping on other people’s bandwagons. Stop trying to save Trigglypuff from xyrself, or for that matter, from ISIS. Play your own game, and come up with your own narrative that has a happier ending than the one someone else has planned for you.

By all means, recruit others onto YOUR bandwagon, but a tipping-point is not your goal. If you got close without getting quashed, you’d end up being captured. Instead, you’re just trying to survive into the next round, to fight another day.

  • Don’t fall for “let’s you and him fight.”
  • Don’t pick fights with Muslims, or for that matter, Snowflakes, or anyone else. Don’t pick fights.
  • If someone picks a fight with you, defend yourself only proportional to the attack, then de-escalate. Bear in mind that they’re puppets, and the puppetmaster is your real enemy.
  • Play your own game, and recruit others to your side.
  • Focus your attention and resources to figuring out how to survive; ultimately it’s a war of attrition. You win by surviving.

Here is some suggested reading if you want to learn more about this game:

Do you know who ISIS really works for? This is one of the worst-kept secrets on the planet! And pretty obvious if you just think about the logistics of military operations in Iraq. But some folks still don’t know. If you’re one of them, find out. You’re being conned.

Steps to take to protect yourself against increasing social unrest

April 25th, 2017

Up until now, participants in Antifa activities have been armed mostly only with makeshift weapons like bicycle locks and bottles. Their battles with alt-Rightists have been mostly with fists.

Mac Slavo recently reported about discussions on Reddit encouraging Antifa to escalate to weapons, including guns, and combat training.

Here is a screenshot I took of a posting on Facebook by Seattle Antifa:

Some of the postings in that group are so over-the-top that I had to carefully consider whether it might be a parody account. I believe that it is in fact on the up-and-up.

Judging from the behaviors I have seen either on video, or in a few cases, live and in person, my take is that members of Antifa tend to be impulsive. If they bring weapons to a rumble, they’re going to use them. Don’t be the one they use them on. According to their own posts, they are targeting “Nazis” (alt-Right), Libertarians, and even “Liberals” (people who promote tolerance and free speech, which Antifa openly opposes).

Judging from some posts I read this evening, looks like the alt-Right is planning to escalate too.

Once guns come out, the police will be more actively involved, and perhaps even the feds. It appears that many municipal officials (and university administrators) are sympathetic to Antifa, and have standing orders to the police to stand down. But the police tend to respond aggressively whenever they feel threatened, and Antifa is the more likely side to attack them. I do not know how this will play out; I expect it to be chaotic in the sense of being hard to predict the outcome.

A trend continues until it exhausts itself. At the moment, the riots and street confrontations show every sign of escalating rather than abating. Even if you don’t intend to be involved, you might get involved anyway. Here are some dangers to be aware of:

  • Sometimes bystanders stumble onto riots and are attacked by rioters, or get caught in the crossfire between opposing groups.
  • Rioters sometimes attack non-participants just for not being part of their group; they are highly attuned to and hostile towards outsiders.
  • Police escalate quickly if they are attacked. Sometimes bystanders get attacked. The police have also been known to specifically target people holding cameras or cell phones.
  • Media are not a reliable source of information about riots.

The media tends to omit or distort events that do not conform to its narratives. If you are relying on the media for your source of information, you might be tricked into believing that a riot where Molotov cocktails were thrown at innocent bystanders was actually a peaceful demonstration where a young woman handed a cop a Pepsi. In one riot we had years ago, a man was murdered on camera. We can compare what we can see in the video still shot with the official account of events, and see that the official account is almost completely fictional. The US media routinely lies, and withholds information. Just expect that.

Because the media is not accurately reporting on the situation, and in fact I’m only hearing anything substantial from Twitter, I don’t know where all the confrontations and riots have occurred or are likely to occur. Urban areas are more likely to see riots and confrontations than suburban and rural areas, and some specific parts of the country (like the urban west coast) seem to have higher levels of agitation than others (the rural high plains and upper midwest are probably pretty quiet). If you’re in a quiet area, be aware of trouble in other parts of the country while traveling.

Within riot-prone cities, riots tend to be concentrated in specific neighborhoods. In my city, it’s the downtown core, one rough neighborhood, one counter-culture neighborhood, and one neighborhood with a major university. You can reduce your exposure by reducing your travel through those areas—assuming you don’t live in one, in which case you might want to move. Downtown business districts are problematic, since they are targets for rioters to harass people with business to take care of. For the sake of time and convenience, I try to do as much business as possible via the internet anyway.

Certain dates, like May 1st, are more likely to see trouble.

Here are some tips to improve your odds of staying out of harm’s way:

  • Maintain situational awareness at all times.
  • Learn self-defense techniques that include safety habits such as giving blind corners a wide berth when you turn around them, and peering into the back seat of a car before entering the vehicle, to avoid ambushes.
  • Learn some basic riot-evasion techniques.
  • Beware that police often react violently to cameras and cell phones. And don’t mouth off at them about your rights; you’re not in a position to defend them!
  • Talk to your friends and family. Make sure they take their own personal safety seriously. Most of them probably don’t. Show them videos of citizen-reported mob attacks, that aren’t getting reported by the mainstream media.
  • Offer to accompany family and friends for security in situations like “downtown, after business hours”, or “rough neighborhood”. This will help get them into the right frame of mind better than a lecture.