I am scheduled to speak to a group on personal safety in late January 2021. The topic is: What can a person do if they are alone, or with a couple of friends when out in public and are confronted by a group bent on causing conflict? From the past year, the concern on this group’s mind are groups such as Antifa, Black Lives Matter, or any other “social justice” group in contemporary times.
First understand that most members of these groups when by themselves are not likely to cause any strife. However, when these groups gather in numbers, they are more likely to feel emboldened and will act lawlessly. If you are approached by members of these types of groups , know that they are more than likely accompanied by several of their cohorts. You may be able to easily identify they are together in a group by the way they dress (similarly or not) or because they are positioned in proximity of the members of the group approaching you. There also exist the possibility that you may not see all the members of this group who may have elected to hide in the shadows until they wish to reveal their presence. When they do, it will usually be to blindside their intended target.
The bottom line is this: If you are approached by a person who you have identified as a member of a group who claims to be that of any social justice organization, often, the person will not be alone. If the person is verbally confrontational, expect that he/she has additional members of their group nearby to assist in their acts of intimidation and violence. Unless you and possibly the friends with you are prepared to engage in a physical battle (with this individual and all his/her compadres) recognize that you are in a volatile situation with the odds are not in your favor. Do whatever you can to de-escalate the situation and when it is safe to do so, leave the entire area.
Courage does not always require that one must stand and fight. Courage is also the ability to recognize when it may be best to remain silent, not allow yourself to react with emotion and drawn into the fight the group has designed. It may be the best course to de-escalate a volatile situation and leave the area to survive the encounter.