It can happen to you. You are on your commute and unexpectedly witness a violent act before your eyes. Do you intervene? What if the antagonist has a knife? There is no easy answer and every situation is different. But it does call for split second decision making.
Today, we will look at two different videos of Good Samaritans intervening. The first video shows a woman being randomly selected on a train platform and subsequently being stabbed. Within fractions of a second, a Good Samaritan intervenes. He manages to subdue the antagonist without being stabbed. A lucky man who achieved the desired outcome.
In the second video, a Good Samaritan intervenes with a purse snatcher--and receives multiple stabs for his efforts.
If you decide to intervene, I contend that there can be no half measures. If you are trying to wrestle a man who has a knife and try to get him into a submission hold until police magically appear, the chances of winding up severely injured are quite high. The man with the knife is not playing by the rules of the ring. What works in your Brazilian Jiu Jitsu gym won't translate well when the person you are trying to submit is launching multiple stabs.
An antagonist who used a knife or is threatening to use a knife has already established deadly intent. Don't go for the submission; go for the injury. Take his brain to non-functional. Understanding the vulnerable targets of the human body like the neck, eyes, and groin and expending your efforts to gain purchase on those targets, is far more likely to yield positive results.
Always ask yourself: what if? And then envision the solution. Where would you strike. How could you strike in a manner that used your body weight? Sometimes just a few seconds--or even a few fractions of a second--of forethought can mean the difference between success and defeat.