In the Street Encounters Concealed Carry Course I completed over the weekend, we talked a lot about how we should handle road rage. This is apparently a huge problem and if you’ve ever experienced it, you know it can turn on a dime.
When I worked at Humana Insurance in DePere, WI, I took Hwy 41 South off 172 every day. I would drop off my son at his daycare, give him lots of hugs and kisses, then head back off on my commute. Since I had already gone through the Totally Responsible Person training at work, I was always early – heading out with ample time to not only punch in on time, but also to grab breakfast and coffee.
One morning, I was merging into the exit lane when a car sped up as I was changing lanes, so I swung back out to wait for a space to get back into the lane. The guy sped up, got right next to me and threw his coffee at my car. That was pretty shocking, but I followed him far enough to get his license plates and called the police, who met me at my office in case he circled back to follow me.
I just don’t get it, what’s the trigger for road rage?
Just this week, a road rage incident in Fort Lauderdale, Florida lead to the death of 27 year old Don William Alvarez. The other driver involved, Jack Bellino, 28, said Alvarez made a U-turn to pursue Bellino which his girlfriend who was also in the vehicle caught on her cell phone. That cell phone video supports their claim and witnesses statements that the shooting was in self defense.
As gun owners, we need to think about how we should handle ourselves in these situations. The world, and obviously our roadways, are no place for posturing but if we need to pull our weapons for self defense, we need to make sure our actions are clearly a response to others’ actions, not the catalyst.
For myself, and what I have taught my children is, I would do my best to not find myself stopped with the individual, and if I was being followed, I would call 911 and begin driving to the nearest police station or officer. Have you thought about what you would do if confronted by someone in a full blown road rage?