I was recently doing the laundry and one of the less pleasant aspects of this routine is going through my teenage son’s gym bag. Sweaty socks, crusty underwear, shirts thatdon’t bend and a home made knife. Something fashioned out of a butter knife, sharpened on a grinding wheel and clad in duct tape for a handle. A shiv. I put this item aside and waited for my husband to get home to discuss it. He was as shocked as I was so we confronted our 17 year old, Sam, about it that evening.
Sam was embarrassed and sheepish about it at first. He explained that it was becoming the norm for kids at school to carry knives and some of the students even had guns. He claimed that he didn’t want to be the only kid unarmed and vulnerable as violence was on the rise at school.
As a mother with three teenagers I took a stance that was against the norm. I didn't want my kids to be vulnerable. Yet I also didn’t want them to be held victim by the very=devices they carried for protection. After discussing it with my husband we agreed.
Training. Training was the missing element. We agreed our children should be capable of defending themselves in a non lethal way.
My husband purchased three lock-back knives easily deployable with a thumb button. Two inch blades. Contrary to popular belief a two inch blade is more than enough to take the fight out of an opponent to buy you the time you need to escape.
He taught them the proper way to hold and conceal the knife in times of danger. Thetis to hold the knife with the blade tucked up the sleeve and not visible as opposed to holding it with the blade out like you’re about to butter some bread.
With the use of a training dummy the kids were taught non lethal puncture points specifically to slow your opponent down. Specifically the choice targets where thequadracept (avoiding the femoral artery), the calf, the top of the foot, the biceps (avoidingthe brachael artery), the palms and the right pectoral muscle.
They all learned how to properly use a knife to simply slow an aggressor down in anon-lethal fashion to allow them to run away. We kept tapes of all the training to be able to prove they were trained specifically to wound and not kill.
Embrace the reality that things are not about to become less violent. As tired as the saws I believe it’s better to be convicted by 12 than carried by 6.