Rob: We have both had a ton of stuff going on in our lives for the last year but let us try and… I do not want to take a whole lot of time and bore people with the details. But why don’t you take five minutes and tell people what changes you have made and how things are different in your world this year.
Dave: Frankly, I got tired working for the government after doing almost thirty years for a county sheriff’s office. I took a job working as a contractor for a federal government, did that for about seven, and just got somewhat tired of doing the whole government thing. My wife worked at me one day, she said, “You know, you’ve kind of fooled around with this instructing stuff kind of hit/miss and here and there and yet I always wanted to know if you could do it so why don’t you give it a try?”
Just right before thanksgiving, I enlisted the help of my kids who are a lot more computer savvy than I am and setup a website, the Facebook page, and all the things that are related, all of that. Kind of, put out my shingles and the firearms training business and so far so good, because it seems to be taking off for me really well.
Rob: I said it is your electronic shingle nowadays right.
Dave: Hahaha. There you go.
Rob: Can you tell us what kind of classes are you offering right now?
Dave: The name of the website and the name of my company is Handgun Combatives LLC and that is a direct take from the book that I wrote which I think since we last talked is in its second edition. I got the opportunity to redo it and I was glad to do that because I think it is much better. I took the name from that and opened my shingle and I am totally focusing on the combative application of the handgun.
I am not going to be doing carbine classes frankly Rob. If you want a carbine class especially with the AR-15 platform, one of the former military guns, they are just going do a lot better than me. I am just saying the handgun has been the primary weapon of law enforcement for centuries. Law enforcement instructors do that very, very well. So I feel like I have a lot to offer in the combative use of a handgun. That is where I am directing it.
Rob: Well I appreciate you obviously avoided the areas that you know yourself that you do not know well. Take what you know and teach it and I am sure you will do well with this. Sounds like you have been busy with it too.
Dave: It has taken off well. I could do the carbine and stuff but frankly, while I was in SWAT, it was the MP5, the HK53, and those weapon platforms are just too expensive to get. I can do a carbine class, I have done them, but people will do them better than me so why kid myself. Teaching with a handgun is working out well for me. I have got about 20 classes scheduled so far for 2012 and I have openings for more if people are interested. Let us face it; some of these classes will not go because when you are doing classes on the road, the single most important factor is the hose. The point of contact on the ground through is drumming up the local interest. If you get a point of contact or a hose through just as an interested in doing anything with it. It is just like trying to get a free class then the course probably is not going to go because listing it on my website alone is not enough. You have to have somebody there locally beating the drum for you.
Rob: I’ll skip over to me and give people a quick update at least on what’s going on here and why there has been an essentially thirteen almost fourteen month hiatus on the Combatives Podcast here. I am actually recording and calling Dave here from Nepal, the capital city of Kathmandu. It is actually a local village just outside of Kathmandu.
We have many changes in our life. I am over here doing missions work and some other stuff. I was staying very busy and when we first moved over here, we had twenty hours a day of power outages. And if you do the math that obviously means we only had power four hours a day. That is because they have a dry season and most of their power comes from hydroelectric. It is something that happens every year. We came over here; there is no way I can make sure that four hours exactly lines up with interviews. Let alone doing editing and the other stuff that goes with the work on the podcast here so I literally had to put that on the back burner for a while. Now we have battery backup. I have a computer over here that I am able to use to do that in an office. Its things that gotten to the point where I’m able to do this so I am back and hopefully we can get this going again with the same passion, the same great information.
I know I am a poser now. I told Dave. I am firearm-less, I have no firearms over here because of the walls and the rules. But hopefully I can still ask the same questions… the right questions. Get some information out of Dave here that people listen to the podcast that can enjoy… that can help make you safer.
What I like to do… I know there are probably many people that are going to be joining us that have not been able to listen to any of these things in the past and I do not want to rehash things that people might be bored with but truth is it has been thirteen months. We can use a refresher. I could use a refresher myself. What we are going to do, we are going to start out talking about the purpose of this podcast and while we call it the combatives podcast versus the defensive podcast. Many people have different names for their books, classes, and defensive handguns. But Dave, that is not the route you have gone with this. In fact, you were the one that choose this name originally. Tell us why combatives?
Dave: It is a matter of being verbally, visually descriptive. As an instructor, I think an instructor who can make a statement to their student and that student can get a visual image on their brain of what I am trying to get across. I am just going to be able to teach that student so much better. I am very particular in the words I use. If you look at the word defensive, it means to defend and what defend means is kind of… picture a group of people in a fort and they’re trying to keep an outside army from coming over the walls. They are merely defending. Someone attacks you on the street, they start throwing a volley of punches at you, and you just stand there and kind of fend the punches off. At some point, you are going to be overwhelmed unless you become offensive. We heard it from many coaches over the years the best defense is a good offense. The only way to defend is to be offensive. If you look at the word combative and forget all the combatives programs; and forget the things that are going around you and look at the root meaning in the dictionary. Combative means ready and willing to fight. Recently, I saw it in an updated dictionary where it was ready and eager to fight. I am not sure if eager is a good word but ready and willing is certainly appropriate. It does not mean you are looking for a fight. As a matter of fact, do not fight. Every time you enter a conflict, you run the risk of losing. That is a fact, there is no way you can get around it, get away from it, avoid it, or evade it. Then being ready and willing to fight is a good thing so I choose the word combative.
Rob: As you are talking, I go to my default dictionary, Google. I look up the word combat not combatives and they give you their definition right at the top without the need to have to go and see it. But for the word combat they give us here to take action, to reduce, destroy or prevent and I’m sure you’ve heard this used. We are trying to combat extra illnesses in our group or we are trying to essentially stop/reduce/to prevent so combatives has also more meaning than just fighting or extending yourself or being effective. It also has to do with stopping or preventing something that you do not want to happen.
Dave: Absolutely. That makes a lot of sense. That is the bane we are trying to get into here. Does not mean you are looking for conflict but if conflict comes your way and you cannot get around it, you cannot avoid it then you are ready and willing to take it on. Like what you have said, it could be the one drugs or whatever the case maybe. You are willing to fight back.
Rob: One of the things that we are going to be talking about in our series here of podcast is willingness versus avoidance because those are two sides of the same coin. You have to be absolutely and fully ready to use the skills that you have. Stand up and do what you need to do but you should also be absolutely dedicated towards avoidance and combatives totally works with both of these concepts.
Dave: Absolutely. If you’re going to be a truly prepared individual, someone who’s ready and willing to fight, you must understand that conflict is it all possible, can be avoided because anytime you enter conflict whether it’s war or an attack on the street, you run the risk of losing. Anyone who is followed or war on terror knows that our nations’ best warriors, our seals, delta force operators, Special Forces, terrorist jumpers, recon pro. They are killed all of the time by lesser skilled fighters nearly by half instance; some comstream shoved a rifle up over the edge of the fence or hill. One loosed a volley of 762 and killed one of these people strictly by luck. Luck is a factor in this. Anytime you are in a conflict, you are in a risk of losing. If it is all possible, do not do it.
Rob: Let us go back to the average person on this tree. We all think of combat, at least I do, I think of a soldier out on harm’s way fighting yet someone who’s an enemy of our country. That is what comes to my mind. But combatives is just as important for the regular Joe citizen walking down the street. Why is that so important for just the average citizen even?
Dave: An attack is an attack and I had this conversation here a while back with… I call him the gun form gomers, people who on the gun form, and can hypher a good game but they do not have practical experience and this individual basically stayed at that.
Law enforcement officers, they do not face the same threats as someone in the war on terror and I agree on that. Where I disagree with this person’s assertion is that dead is dead. There is no degree of dead. It is not like killed by an insurgent versus a drug dealer or killed by a terrorist or a rapist robber in the parking lot of a Wal-Mart. You are still attacked and you are still dead. An attack is an attack and it can occur in any time. As a society, we all know where the bad ends of town are, the bad areas are. We try to avoid those areas and that is good. But those that would prey upon us, those criminals that live in our society, they also know where the money is. They know the people who have the money, they know the people who are attacking, robbing, and raping, and they know where they are located. That is where they will hunt, that is where they will seek their prey. Walking across the parking lot in the shopping mall, the attack could come out of nowhere. You need to be ready and willing to repel that attack. That type of mindset is important to anyone who lives in our society and to think that is not, to think that you are protected because you live in a nice neighborhood or that the police are going to be there to save you is naïve at best and stable at most.
Rob: If you are anything like me, I am sure you have some family that comes and look at what you do and what you basically dedicated the tensest times in your life towards helping people with and they say what is the big deal? I do not see the threat, I do not see the danger, and I do not see why this is so important to me. Why do you spend so much time in this? We see this; we see the importance of it. We see what could happen if we do not prepare. We see the value of covering these hypothetical situations and trying to make sure that our families are safe and we can protect what we love but what do you offer up to these people? If somebody on the street that you have no emotional contact to, what do you care? But what do you say to someone that you love? Someone that you care about who does not see the importance of this combative mindset?
Dave: I have had that in my life with my own family especially with my kids when they were young. They did not see the threat or when their mother and I would be concerned when they were going out. Be safe and be careful: “Aww dad, we don’t need that.” There is no way in the world we could verbally tell them, get them to understand the threat of living in our society. They never did understand that until they moved out and they went out into the working world themselves and they actually saw the world the way it really is and that there are threatening people out there. There are people who are willing to hurt and kill them for nothing more than the possessions they have with them at a particular time. The individual who has no desire to know what the world is really like, I am not sure you can help them. The person who is not sure then you can certainly show them the way just by looking at the nightly news in your area. For those people who have truly lived in the world that really does not pay much of an effort to make them understand that the society we live in is potentially dangerous.
Rob: There is a balance also. You really do not want to… I do not know about you but I do not watch the evening news. I do not want to spend time focusing on these things that are going wrong, the things that are happening, and people that are being hurt and all that stuff. It is not really, what I want to focus on. It is not want I want to spend time watching. But you still need to understand that that stuff does go on and you did not need to understand how it relates to you and let that be a motivator for you to get out there and protect your family and prepare in the way you need to. There are people that just do not care. Those people, they do need to spend a little extra time reading the paper. Read about the things that happened, how violent people can be, what our world is actually like. Think about what you can do if most of the time even if you are a single person, it is not just about you. There are people you hang around with that you want to protect, that you do not want to see hurt. There are number of good reasons that you should at least prepare in some way.
Dave: There is a reality and there is a harsh reality. So many people do not want to deal with the harsh reality but it is there. If they choose not to see it, I am not sure there is much we can do. The fact of the matter is that how do you say this? Sometimes you just have to make people understand the threat they face and it may not be something they want to do. It may not be something you want to call their attention to but in the end, you may be doing them a favor.
Rob: As a preacher, I totally understand that whole concept. Calling people’s attention to sin of the punishment for and there are aspects of the bible in God’s words that may not seem pleasant at first glance but obviously I see it as important enough to still bring those things up, to still teach those parts, to bring people’s attention to it. It is the same way with combatives and people’s mindsets and getting them prepared for violence and the possibility of an unpleasant encounter. It may be unpleasant to bring people’s attention to that scene of violence, that unthinkable wanted act of destruction that we saw on the newspaper or on the TV. But if that gets them to prepare and maybe it saves their lives, maybe keeps their children from being hurt in some way. It is totally worth it.
Dave: So be it. It is the way it is. Some people will require a higher level of harshness to reach than others will. That is why I call it the harsh reality.
Rob: If we were to get back to the completely good old days, we could talk about how the movies, violent video games, that sort of thing. I do not think that these things need to be outlawed. Do not get me wrong people, I am not saying that, but what it does is it does harden people’s minds to violence. When you see it on a video game over and over again, when you see it on a movie that you watch every week, when you see it on the TV news, and you read about it on the paper, it doesn’t have that shock effect anymore.
Dave: We can certainly anesthetize to violence because there is so much of it. We live in a 24/7 electronic society where anything you want is within a few clicks of a mouse or remote control. You can go on YouTube and click in on crimes in progress, all-out fighting, and all these stuff. It becomes shocking and entertaining and that is distance.
Rob: Right. I think we will leave this subject off for this week. We have talked a little bit about combatives versus defensive and that will tell you a little about the action or direction that we are going with the podcast. We have a lot of great ideas and concepts. We are going to talk about mindset. I will leave that to Dave but we are getting into even some of the specific skills of working with the handgun in this roam and using it to its most effective means. I am really looking forward to continuing to talk with you. This is going to be a weekly podcast. We are going to try to get something out every week for you and continue this line of discussion.
Dave: Sounds like a plan Rob. Whatever we can do to help good guys and gals out there. I think it is worth the effort.
Rob: Absolutely. If you get a chance, we just put out here at the Personal Armament Podcast. A book that does include two of the combatives podcast. If you check this out, it is on Amazon.com. It’s called The Practical Guide to Everyday Carry Gear. It is a $10 book. Half of the proceeds or profits that we get go to several different charities including KnifeRights.com and also some charities here in Nepal working with homeless people.
In my opinion, it is a great book. It already has four 5-star reviews in there. Make sure you check that out. That will help us out here at the podcast and help us keep this podcast going. Make sure you also check out Dave’s book Handgun Combatives like the one he mentioned. He has the second edition out. I have read it and it is a great book. Totally recommended and if you get a chance, head over to his website HandgunCombatives.com and checkout some of the courses he offers.
Dave: I also try to write a regular blog. It is at DaveSpaulding.com and it is attached to the website. I try to update as often as I can and it’s nothing else but I have some guest bloggers to me didn’t do it and I’m trying to do like we’re doing with this podcast. Spread the word for folks that look for that kind of information.
Rob: The people that are looking are the good people. We would help them as much as we can.