George S. Ledyard
I always like Ellis's story about the predator on the train... Was this REALLY the best possible outcome?
I had the same thing with one of my police students... My friend had done everything he was trained to do, had stayed cool, didn't panic. exercised restraint, and finally was decisive when it was time. The outcome was just what it should have been.
The problem was that this particular guy was a crazy Neo-Nazi who, two months later walked into a Jewsuh Community Center in LA and shot some children. So, once again, was this really the best possible outcome?
Hi George -
Had Ellis taken the time to consider the future implications of his actions it would have taken him out of the moment and probably put him at greater risk. Now it's entirely possible that Ellis' antagonist did go out and prey on someone else. It's also possible that he went home and put himself to bed or got run over by a bus while crossing the street. The same holds true for your student at the clinic. Being focused and totally in the moment probably saved his life.
I know you aren't saying that either of these men are responsible for or in any way contributory to imagined or actual future events. You do seem to be implying that one should consider the future implications of a particular course of action as the situation develops. But when it comes to self defense isn't that what we are trained not to do? Should we not narrow our focus to the immediacy of the situation and do what is necessary to extricate ourselves in a manner that minimizes the risk of harm to both us and our attackers?
Subsequent events notwithstanding, the best possible outcome was achieved by both Ellis and your student within the context of their respective encounters.