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Rangemaster article, part 3
This is a discussion on Rangemaster article, part 3 within the Training forums, part of the General category; CONDITION RED- In Red, you are ready to fight! You may, or may not, actually be fighting, but you are ...
05-18-2006, 05:47 PM #1
- Join Date
- May 2006
- Memphis, Tn
Rangemaster article, part 3
CONDITION RED- In Red, you are ready to fight! You may, or may not, actually be fighting, but you are MENTALLY PREPARED to fight. In many, or perhaps even most, circumstances where you have gone fully to Red, you will not actually physically do anything at all. The entire process of escalating from Yellow, to Orange, to Red, then de- escalating right back down the scale as the situation is resolved, occurs without any actual physical activity on your part. The key is that you were mentally prepared for a conflict, and thus could physically act if the situation demanded.
When you believe a threat is real, and you have escalated to Red, you are waiting on the Mental Trigger, which is a specific, pre-determined action on his part that will result in an immediate, positive, aggressive, defensive reaction from you. This is how you achieve the speed necessary to win. By having a “pre-made decision” already set up in your mind, you can move physically fast enough to deal with the problem. Without that pre-made decision, the precious time in which you could have acted was wasted on trying to decide what to do after he starts his attack.
The Mental Trigger will differ depending upon the circumstances. It could be, "If he swings that gun in my direction I will shoot him", for instance. It could be, " I have told him to stop, if he takes one more step toward me with that (knife/tire iron/screwdriver) in his hand, I'll shoot him". Whatever trigger is selected, it is a button that, once pushed, results in immediate action on your part.
Your main enemy is reaction time. If you are not aware of your surroundings and fail to see the suspicious character, you may be overwhelmed by him before you can marshal an effective defense. On the other hand, if you are thinking to yourself, "I may have to hurt that guy if he doesn't wise up", you've probably already won that fight, because you have a better understanding of what is transpiring than he does! The best fight is over before the loser fully understands what just happened. If you're caught in Condition White, you will need five to six seconds to realize what is happening, get your wits together, and respond. You simply don't have that much time.
There are a couple of mental tricks you can use in the early phases of your training to assist you in this. Remember that one of the three problems I mentioned earlier in this chapter will be actually "doing it", actually employing lethal force when required. To help with this, each morning when you put your gun on, remind yourself, "I may have to use my gun today". This plants in your subconscious mind (which drives 90% of your life) that there is a reason we wear these guns--we may actually need them to save our lives! When you pick up on that potential threat and escalate to Condition Orange, tell yourself, "I may have to shoot him today!". Believe me, if you have internalized that a specific person is an actual threat to your life, but that you have the means to stop him if need be, it gets easier to mentally deal with the situation.
Let's work through a scenario to illustrate these principles. Let's say you are working in a jewelry store today, a small storefront shop in a strip mall in suburbia. All of the other employees went to lunch and left you here alone. There are not even any customers in the store at the moment-- you're alone. What mental state are you in? (Yellow. You are not ensconced in your home, you're out in the real world.) So you keep your head up, and occasionally you scan out through the glass storefront and check out the parking lot. Since there is no one else in the store, any problem will have to come from outside. You want to know about a problem while it's out there-- not when it's standing across the counter from you.
As you glance through the glass, you see two men in their early 20's back up an old car to your store, get out in identical jogging suits, enter your door, and split up.
Immediately, you go to Orange. They have done nothing illegal, and nothing aggressive, but they are out of place, out of the ordinary, so you escalate your mental state, and begin to think. "This looks like a hold-up in the making. I may have to hurt these guys. What should I do know? If things go bad, I'll drop behind this safe and I can shoot into that wall without endangering anyone on the parking lot. I have a plan." At this point you watch them, and continue to monitor their movements. If they leave, you de-escalate to Yellow once they are gone.
If they stay, they will probably get together on the far side of the store and briefly discuss what they have seen. They will then move toward your position at the counter, and after trying to distract you (Can I see that ring back there?) pull their guns and announce a stick-up. If you have been using the system, you went from Yellow to Orange when they came in, and went to Red as they approach your counter. You are ready. Because criminals have to be adept at reading body language (their lives depend upon this skill), they will see that you are prepared and simply leave. About nine out of ten pairs will leave at this point, without a confrontation. As they drive away, de-escalate from Red, to Orange, to Yellow.
What about the tenth pair? They are drugged, drunk, or both, and failed to recognize your level of readiness. They may go ahead foolishly with their hold-up. According to FBI studies, probably 80% of the ones you will actually have to fight will be under the influence of drugs/alcohol/drugs and alcohol at the time. What's the good news? They're drunk and/or drugged, which plays Hell with their reflexes, reaction time, and motor coordination. They'll be relatively easy to deal with, IF you are mentally prepared (Condition Red) and have done your homework.
If they come in, and upon observing them you go to Orange, then as they approach, to Red, but then they leave, and you de-escalate, you will have gone all of the way up the scale without even reaching for your gun, which is very common. The point is, you would have been ready to reach for your gun if necessary. This is how you win fights, by being mentally prepared to win.