I couldn’t find a link to the article online so I am posting it here in its entirety:
The Press Democrat published: Friday, May 15, 2009
CLOSE TO HOME: Has the last rapist been arrested?
Don’t count on it!
Now that police have arrested a suspect in connection with the string of roadside attacks, women in Sonoma County can surely take a collective sigh of relief. Not!
The “last” rapist has been arrested. You are now safe to walk the streets after dark, to jog in the park, and to drive to your book club on a rural road. Not!
The only way you will ever be safe is when you learn to take care of yourself. No one else can protect you but you.
Mary drove home from the JC. The hour was late and she was tired. She pulled up in front of her home, walked to the back of her car, opened the trunk and started to remove some equipment. Suddenly, she was pushed from behind and started to fall head-first into the trunk.
Under similar circumstances, you may have seen the next day’s Press Democrat: “Woman shoved into trunk, kidnapped and raped!”
Mary, however, was trained in self-defense. Although she could have prevented the incident by being aware, she needed to respond to the attack. Mary stayed calm, grabbed her tear gas canister from her belt, and reached over her shoulder, yelled and fired the canister. Two men ran off screaming!
Self-defense training is survival training. You learn how to effectively respond to a crisis situation. You learn what works, what doesn’t and why. All attackers follow the same pattern — target, test, attack.
First they find a vulnerable victim — usually someone who is unaware. Second. they approach the potential victim to see if she can be intimidated. This is called the intimidation test. The psychology of self-defense is the psychology of intimidation. Whoever wins the battle for intimidation wins!
If the victim becomes intimidated, the assailant wins and can do anything he likes to his victim. If the potential victim refuses to be intimidated and in turn intimidates the attacker, she wins. She has either scared him off or has physically incapacitated him.
Either way, she has successfully resisted and fought back. These rape-resistance strategies have been confirmed by research conducted over the past 30 years. We learn what strategies are most effective and which strategies are ineffective.
I teach people how to fight back and win. In my classes and workshops, participants learn assault prevention, learn hands-on effective physical skills, which are essential for resisting assault, and learn the psychological skills of intimidation by participating in active drills and role-playing.
You can learn these skills though the powerful low-cost three-hour “Streetwise and Bodysafe” workshops which I conduct through Santa Rosa Recreation and Parks at the Finley Community Center.
(For information, go to www.selfprotection.wpstagecoach.comselfprotection.com).
Learn to protect yourself. Fight back and win.
Judith Fein is director of EVOLVE Institute for Violence Prevention. She is a nationally respected self-defense expert, black belt in Korean karate and author of three books on self-defense.