Great Newsletter from Mark Hatmaker


We received this information in Mark Hatmaker’s newsletter.  I thought it was excellent information and wanted to pass it on to all of you.  Please check out his website, as well:



Mark Hatmaker


In our book on reality-based self-defense, No Second Chance, we argue the case that we, as victims, must always (always) fight back. In addition, we argue that we must never concede—we never stop fighting, we never give up except in the case of property- where the decision is always life over property. We offer numerous studies to back up these assertions and we bolster the arguments with Predator Profiles that aim to open our eyes to the dire consequences that result if one does not fight back (or is unable to fight back).

I flog this horse of “fight back no matter what” because there is no subject more valuable than that of preserving your own safety/life or that of a loved one in the face of criminal predation. In the aid of being a broken record (I’m sure the “broken record” cliché is on its way out in the era of iPods) I’d like to call our attention to the results of a 10-year longitudinal study examining the effects of fighting back against a violent attacker but…first a digression into fight matchmaking. 

In sportive combat (boxing, MMA, kickboxing, and the like) the best matches are those made between comparatively equal competitors. Same weight classes, similar skill sets, similar athletic attributes, and the like make for an interesting fight where each fighter has a 50/50 shot of success plus or minus a few percentage points. These are tough fights to call or place your bets on because the variables are equitable. What makes these well-matched fights so interesting to the spectator is the toss-up nature of where the victory will fall. When the fighters are less evenly matched (60/30 odds and the like), and the outcome is almost a foregone conclusion it’s easier to know where to place your money but, perhaps, a bit less interesting for the spectators. This sort of uneven match-up is bad matchmaking and most often boring viewing, but there is an area where bad matchmaking is terrific—and that brings us back to our opening subject. 

66% odds for victory does not make for good sport-fight matchmaking but 66% odds for victory for victims of violent crime who fight back does make for compelling evidence to fight. The aforementioned longitudinal 10-year study surveyed 14, 246 violent crimes in which the victims fought back. The 14, 246 crimes break down into 733 incidences of rape, 1,278 sexual assaults, and 12, 235 events of standard assault. Fighting back reduced the chances for crime completion by 66%. Damn good odds for fighting back. But, we’ve got to be realistic, fighting back does assume that there may be injury in the course of defending yourself so we’ve got to weigh “wounded in the course of protecting yourself” against injury rates for those who do not fight back. Unfortunately, this study did not examine this factor but, two other studies did. 

 In a study of 3,206 women who were the victims of sexual assault it was found that women who fought back were ½ as likely to be injured. 50%, while even odds, is still in the competitive category. Let’s look to one more longitudinal study, another 10-year survey, this time of 27,595 violent crimes of all classes. This study found that resisting led to less injury than experienced by those victims who did not resist.

So, now we’ve got 50/50 odds on injury for those who fight back on the one hand and less injury for those who fought back on the other. The odds now skew from 50% to +50% in favor of fighting back. Stack that on top of a 66% chance of stopping a violent crime in its tracks and your odds-maker will tell you that that’s as close to a sure bet as your going to get in the face of chaos. 

Even with these numbers providing us with a bit of good news inside the context of violence, we’ve got to remain ever aware that we are never ready. We never have the upper-hand as the predators of the word always get to choose the time, the place, the when, and even the if of the attack. We, the civilized humans of the world, the prey animals, never get to dictate any of these parameters. The best we can do is to reduce predator-choice-selection by exercising good prevention habits and perhaps engage in context-oriented self-protection drills centered around chaos but, if (and I sincerely hope it never happens to you or any of your loved ones, readers) if it does happen…the odds say you have a good shot of transforming yourself from an underdog to a pit bull by sheer dint of choosing to fight back. Choose today, right now, to fight back. Choose to do whatever it takes to protect your own life or that of a loved one. 

Thanks everyone and have a great weekend!

Mark Hatmaker


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