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“Today” Show Feature on Self-Defense in Stores Advises Throwing Groceries at Robbers

NBC’s Today show featured a report last Friday on how might effectively defend themselves as a robbery at a convenience store unfolds. There are over 32,000 convenience store robberies each year in the United States, and you can bet, as the human condition continues to deteriorate, that number will do nothing but rise.


So what does Today recommend you do if you need to protect yourself in the midst of a violent convenience store robbery?

Pull grocery items off the shelves and throw them at the perpetrators so that you might effect your escape.


In a demonstration of this “technique,” personal security expert Mykel Hawke, playing the role of the victim, starts throwing packets of oatmeal at Jeff Rossen, Today’s National Investigative Correspondent, who’s pretending to be the armed, highly-agitated criminal.

Hawke set it up like this:

“If you think you have no other choice and you are about to be killed then you’ve got to try to escape. So what you do is you do something mental like, ‘Please, mister, don’t shoot,’ and then you set yourself up with, oh!”

That’s when Hawke began throwing the oatmeal at Rossen, who asks, “And then what?”
Hawke’s reply? “And then you escape. Okay? So that’s it.”

Very sadly, this was meant to be serious advice.

True to form, Today and Rossen dispensed in this segment the same kind of self-defense drivel they’ve passed along before. That is, rather than suggest people learn to defend themselves by way of the most effective means available to anyone…a firearm…all of their self-defense advice assumes it is out of the realm of possibility that a citizen would carry a gun for protection. Previously, Rossen recommended cell phone apps as the best way to protect oneself from a street assault, and also recommended against fighting back if you are the victim of a home invasion. In another report on how to deal with an intruder, Rossen proposed that victims fight back with bug spray.

By Robert G. Yetman, Jr. Editor At Large