It’s no surprise that crime has almost doubled in Springfield, Mo in the past decade, and one news reporter confesses he isn’t sure why lawlessness has skyrocketed since the early 2000’s.
For example, did you know that murders have doubled since 2004? And rapes have more than tripled! One of the reasons I wanted to move back to Springfield was because of how safe it is compared to other cities, but now I am not so sure. According to city-data.com, Springfield is definitely not as safe as surrounding towns such as Battlefield, Nixa, Republic and Rogersville. But hey, these towns are much smaller, right?
- Robberies have doubled since 2004;
- Assaults have more than doubled since 2004;
- Surprisingly, burglaries and thefts have stayed around the same levels.
With all the violence and aggression flying around, it’s no wonder more and more women are looking to protect themselves via some method of self-defense. The question is, what form of self-defense are you going to use?
How Do You Feel About Guns?
Honestly, guns are not my favorite thing in the world – in fact, if I ever saw one I have a tendency of turning around and walking (or running) in the other direction. It’s right up there with “spiders” on my list of “nopes.” But after meeting with V and Mr. Shepherd of Leatherneck Shooters, my eyes were opened as to why I feel the way I do about guns, and some tips on how I can overcome my fears.
Keep in mind I have taken a few self-defense classes back in the day, and luckily I haven’t been in a situation as of late where I would have to use these techniques on another person. I HAVE, however, been in situations where someone pulled a gun out and I was lost as to what to do. That age-old adage, “don’t bring a knife to a gun fight,” comes in perfectly here. What would you do if a gun was pulled on you? I doubt my tactic of turning around and walking away would work here – it may even get me killed! So what would you do?
Taking a Cue From the Boys of Leatherneck Shooters
Sitting down with V and Mr. Shepherd was very enlightening….and delicious! We met up at Buckinghams to enjoy BBQ pork sandwiches while discussing our differing opinions on the topic of guns. I am glad that I spoke with them, I learned a lot from their many years of combined wisdom and they opened my eyes to how I was keeping myself ignorant…and while many claim ignorance is bliss, it isn’t when your or your family’s life is on the line.
First and foremost, I was happy to discover I was not the only person afraid of guns. Many people have the same fear as I do, and what creates fear is a lack of education. And the only way to destroy fear is through education.
A gun that is sitting on a table is not dangerous – just as a rock or a stick laying on the ground isn’t dangerous. They are, however, tools, and how you use the tool is completely and entirely up to you.
While there are some trigger-happy individuals out there who use guns as a method of intimidation or to provide a self-gratifying ego-trip for the carrier, I was pleased to discover V and Mr. Warren Shepherd are against the whole needing to show off how awesome they are by waving their guns around.
Keep in mind these two individuals are highly skilled and trained shooters. Both of them coming from military background, their sense of self-confidence outweighs any need for them to show off their toughness – with these two, silence speaks volumes.
Mr. Shepherd and V’s Tips to Keep You and Your Family Safe in the Midst of Rising Crime
- Social Media in Moderation;
Mr. Shepherd abhors social media, and rightfully so. It can be used against you if you aren’t careful. For example, don’t put up that you are leaving town for two weeks, or that you are alone at a bar in downtown Springfield.
Personally, at WeDames, we use social media, but I do my best to not post up our event happenings on Instagram or FB until the next day or a few hours after the event is over. I want to keep my fellow Dames safe and sound!
- Practice scoping your environment;
The minute you walk into a room, restaurant or office, take a look around and notice everyone. Get off your phone (I am actually very guilty of this)! Scoping out your environment and making it a habit helps you remain vigilant. Once you roughly know the amount of people and have sized them up, any one looking for an easy target won’t consider you one – after all, you got a good look at their face!
- Never rely on someone else to protect you;
Sure, we have policemen in Springfield, and yes, some of us have beefy boyfriends and spouses (or are beefy ourselves), but unless they are with you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week then it is time to take your safety into your own hands.
- Educate yourself;
Even if guns aren’t your thing, it is still wise to learn about them. At the very least, you could learn to disarm someone and unload their pistol. If guns ARE your thing, then practice shooting at least once a month so you don’t forget what you are doing.
Leatherneck Shooters is an organization ran by two trained gentlemen who not only practice gun safety, but carry an air of professionalism and maturity into their training. Luckily, neither one of them have ever had to use their guns on another person in public, but they admit the level of confidence they have simply knowing their gun is with them keeps them feeling safe and secure. In short, they provide education to people who want to stay safe and secure in the midst of an unfortunate occurrence. For more information on Leatherneck Shooters, you can visit their website here, or sign up for one of their classes by calling V at 1 (979) 985-7290. They will give you the training you need to keep you and your family safe in Springfield, Mo!