At least, that’s how this story should read. There are multiple valuable lessons in this article for the armed citizen, and for anyone mindful of their own right to self defense. Let’s begin at the beginning, though.
Daniel Hauff, 33, said he tried to quell a dispute between two men on the train when one of them, joined by two other riders, began yelling gay slurs and other taunts at him.
Tip number 1: Don’t be a hero. If two dudes are about to start throwing hands, or shoving, or shouting, or anything like that, remember these words: “It’s not my fight”. If you’re an armed citizen, or just someone riding the train, let those two jerks settle it themselves. Only intervene if your safety is at jeopardy.
Hauff said he pressed the emergency intercom, and the conductor came. But the conductor soon left, Hauff said, and the train started moving again.
Tip number 2: Don’t count on other people to be there to defend you. I think we can all agree on this one, that when seconds count, the police, the authorities, or the people with badges are minutes away. Ultimately you and you alone are responsible for your own safety. Don’t count on the law to be there when you need them…which is why you shouldn’t go looking for trouble (see tip number 1).
Hauff said the men beat him while the train was between the Wilson and Argyle stops. “And I never once threw a punch,” Hauff said. “It’s just not in my nature.” Hauff said he got away by wiping some of his blood on the attackers and telling them he was HIV-positive, which was not true.
Tip number 3: Don’t just stand there and get your ass kicked. Seriously, if you are even attacked, fight back. Once violence has started, the time for being passive is over. Mr. Hauff sort of got that by employing an unorthodox weapon, but this was a fight that never should have happened to begin with.
If there is one thing I would take away from this, it’s my personal self defense mantra: you always win the fight that never happens. Or more poetically: he who flees and runs away can run away another day. Until someone hands me a badge again, it’s not my job, it’s not your job, nor is it your responsibility to break up fights. You don’t have to play peacemaker or anything like that – you defend yourself, and if you feel so obligated, defend innocent bystanders; but if two jerks on the train want to punch each other’s lights out, I say grab some popcorn and enjoy the show.