Sometimes living in a small town can offer an illusion of safety. It is easy to fall into the whole ‘nothing bad can happen in a small town’ pitfall, but the simple fact is, that is not always true.
For instance, according to the 2010 local and national crime statistics found at usa.com, Cedar City, Utah has a higher rate of both murder and rape than the national average. In fact, Cedar City’s average was nearly 20 percent higher (per capita), than the national average for rape based on their numbers.
Keeping this in mind, registering for the two-day Marine Corps Hand to Hand Combat Training for Women class provided by On Target Defensive Training December 2 and 3, was a life changing opportunity.
Making it clear that the purpose of the class was to incapacitate an attacker, using lethal force if necessary, On Target owner and chief instructor Dan Kidder shared a few statistics.
“In 64 percent of rapes that are not reported the offender will return and re-victimize the same victim,” Kidder said. “17 percent rapes that are reported will re-victimize the same victim.
“100 percent of those who are killed in the act of attempting a rape are guaranteed to never victimize again,” he added.
The sobering numbers were followed by a half-hour lecture about the law; when it is appropriate to actually engage in lethal force actions, and when it is not. The final input on the subject was that: if the assailant is on the ground, not moving, and is no longer a physical threat to the victim, use of deadly force will not be accepted in a court of law; beyond that, if a victim feels as though their life is in danger, it’s all fair game.
At first, it was difficult to role-play with other students for fear of looking foolish, or doing something wrong. Yelling “Get your hands off of me” at the top of our lungs was a bit awkward in the beginning, but after we each took turns being the victims and attackers, and yelling like lunatics, the defensive strategies became a bit easier to reenact.
After a while everyone in the class relaxed, and from there on out, it was smooth sailing. With each move taught to the class a new eruption of nervous laughter, followed by serious practice erupted from the classmates; who, by the end of the second day, started to behave more like old friends than strangers.
Everyone in the room said they had different reasons for attending the two-day training course, but the bottom line for each of woman in the room was that they each wanted to have confidence in their ability to defend themselves against someone who meant them harm.