On average, an armed robbery is completed in eight to nine minutes, while it takes between nine and eleven minutes for police to respond to the 911 call for help. In most cases, when authorities arrive to the scene of an incident, it is over. Their job is to secure the area, investigate, and report. They are not the first responders, they are the second.

You have two options when confronted by a bad guy with a gun: be a victim or a first responder. Being a victim is easy… you just stay on the preverbal X and let the bad guy do whatever they want. It requires no preparation or thought. Your fate… your destiny is in their hands.  In eight to nine minutes you will be either dead, wounded, or alive… by their choice. The police will show up in nine or so minutes and do their job. You are a slave.

UnknownBeing a citizen first responder changes the dynamics of a bad guy encounter. You move from being passive to active, from reactive to proactive. You do not wait for the bad guy to enslave you, instead you take the fight to them. You move off the X of victimhood and into role of a Sheepdog… a protector. You use those precocious eight minutes to save your life and those around you. This is hard to do. It takes preparation and practice.

You don’t think this is possible. It think it couldn’t happen to the average guy. Somebody, for example, just sitting around just getting a hair cut. Well, check this out. Two armed men entered the “Next Up Barber Shop” in South Carolina on January 26, 2016, only to encounter an armed customer (David Jackson) and stylist. What happened next can only be described as a perfect example of a citizen first responder in action, and it was all captured on surveillance camera.

If you forward to 6:18 in the next video, you can hear David talk about this encounter. He talks about how one armed man held a shotgun to the head of another patron, while the other robbed each person. David’s children where in the shop, just out of view of the camera on the right. He pleaded with the robbers not to harm them… to let them go. They did not. David needed to make a decision: sit on his X or take action to protect his kids, his friends, and himself.

David responded. Within two seconds he rose from the chair, drew his concealed pistol, and fired on one of the armed robbers. The shotgun holding robber fled the scene. The pistol wielding bad guy died outside the barber shop door. David is a first responder… a citizen first responder. He never thought this day would come. But it did and he was prepared.

So what will you be when that day comes for you? A victim or a citizen first responder? The sad truth is that most opt for the victimhood role, but not because they want to be a victim. Really, who does? This is more of a default option because they don’t know how to take that first step towards effectively thinking like and becoming a citizen first responder. The first step is simply the hardest for most –  It all starts with a core desire, a willingness, to just move off the X of victimhood.


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