Wednesday, March 2, 2016
Mace substitute and other defenses
Self defense while traveling can be problematic. The state of Florida recognizes my New Hampshire concealed carry permit. It's legal for me to transport a handgun in my car from my summer home to my winter home. Not every state along the way recognizes my permit so the handgun must be unloaded and locked away. Ammo has to be locked in a separate safe. That's not too handy in an emergency.
Mace is pretty effective, but laws vary from state to state and even from city to city. A good substitute for mace is wasp spray. It's pretty nasty stuff and often has a range of over 20 feet. If traveling with camping gear you can make the argument that you are afraid of insects while camping. You had no intention of using the wasp spray as a weapon. It was just handy when you were attacked.
Some folks like to travel with a baseball bat in their car. In the right hands a bat is fearsome weapon. If given the choice between a bat and a hunting knife in a fight, I'll take the bat every time. If you do carry a baseball bat, also carry a ball and glove. Your lawyer will thank you.
Most boaters have at leas one powerful spot light. They can blind an intruder, giving you a chance to land the first blow. Usually it's enough for a person on watch to spot any boat that comes too close. That lets any potential attacker know there's an awake and alert person on the boat.
I also like to travel with a couple of good long hiking sticks. For a few years I took private staff fighting lessons in a friends dojo. A kayak paddle can also do the job in a pinch.
Sometimes we must balance protection against the threat of breaking the law. Of course, in a serious SHTF situation, I'm going to use firearms. In the end, it's better to be tried by 12 than carried by 6.