Accosted By The Mob: What Should You Do?

Written by Ed Brodow on September 2, 2020

We are accustomed to living in a civil society where you can walk down the street secure in the knowledge that you will not be physically assaulted. If you are attacked, you have confidence that the police and the justice system will protect you. That reality may be a thing of the past. America is in the midst of a major shift. In some respects, we are beginning to resemble a third-world country.

Many people who identify as “social justice warriors” now believe they have a right to assault you and destroy your property without consequences to them. Sen. Rand Paul and Vernon Jones found this out last week as they left the White House. Even your home and your family are not sacrosanct. This current state of civil affairs is not a new phenomenon. Barbara Tuchman, author of A Distant Mirror, describes how French nobles in the fourteenth century were attacked in the streets of Paris by gangs of thugs. Their retinue of bodyguards often were ill-equipped to deal with the assaults. Nothing has changed. We deceive ourselves by assuming that we are more civilized in the twenty-first century.

Is there no defense against mob assault? If you think you can defend yourself, guess what. Self-defense may not be a defense. The age-old right to defend yourself is being challenged by liberal prosecutors. Mark and Patricia McCloskey found this out when they attempted to defend their lives and their St. Louis home against a Black Lives Matter mob. They pointed their weapons at the mob after their lives were threatened. “It is illegal to wave weapons in a threatening manner at those participating in nonviolent protest,” said the St. Louis prosecutor. In a travesty of justice, the McCloskeys were each charged with a felony count of unlawful use of a weapon, which carries a possible four-year sentence.

According to Channel 3 News in Memphis, “If you face a mob, do you pull a gun? Hit them with your car? Lawyers say both of those could land you behind bars.” What if your car is being menaced by demonstrators who are blocking the road? Do you have a legal right to run them over? A car is considered a deadly weapon. The question is whether the driver of the car reasonably believes he or she is about to be killed or suffer serious harm unless the car moves, said Prof. Christopher Slobogin of Vanderbilt University Law School.

The same rule applies to using a handgun, rifle, or shotgun. “Somebody throwing water in your face or knocking your hat off your head does not constitute a deadly threat, so shooting is not an appropriate response,” says USA Carry. Pepper spray usually is a better choice. But don’t spray someone just for insulting you. There must be a reasonable fear of assault. If “you find yourself under attack by a violent group of people, and you cannot safely remove yourself,” USA Carry advises that “the concealed carry handgun remains the option of lethal response, if justified, as it does in any other self-defense situation.”

Of course, you can always call 911 on your cell phone. Or can you? Try telling that to the woman in Fredericksburg, Virginia, who was trapped in her car by a crowd of demonstrators. She was terrified as they jumped on her car with herself and her baby inside. When she called 911, they told her, “We can’t do anything ma’am. The city told us that this is a sanctioned event.” To which the frantic woman said, “You know this is going to get dangerous. I got a kid here.” The 911 dispatcher offered this outrageous response: “We would suggest you call up city hall to let them know about your frustrations.” Thanks a lot.

If you find yourself in the same situation as Rand Paul and Vernon Jones, here is some good advice. First, try to get away before the mob reaches you. If you can’t, don’t try to fight off the entire mob. Even though you are a Bruce Lee wannabe, you won’t win. If you try to take on the mob, it is likely that you will wind up either in the hospital or the morgue. Instead, try to blend in with the crowd. Pretend to cheer or shout. In other words, do whatever they are doing to make it seem like you are one of them. Then quietly work your way to the edge of the crowd and slip away.

Short of avoiding the mob altogether, there is no easy answer to this problem. A better solution is to elect public officials who will (a) take immediate action against violent mob activity, and (b) vote against defunding or downsizing the police. When it comes to the November 3rd election, remember that Kamala Harris has gone on record in favor of continued mob violence. Rand Paul and Vernon Jones were fortunate that the police arrived in time to protect them from the mob in Washington, DC. You may not be so lucky. A strong police presence is your best bet to defend against mob attack.

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Ed Brodow is a conservative political commentator, negotiation expert, and regular contributor to Newsmax, Daily Caller, American Thinker, Townhall, LifeZette, Media Equalizer, Reactionary Times, and other online news magazines. He is the author of eight books including his latest blockbuster, Trump’s Turn: Winning the New Civil War.