It seems like riots are popping up everywhere lately, and that puts people who want to avoid them at risk.
Even though it’s best to avoid riots completely, you could still get caught in one unexpectedly.
This blog post is for anyone who’s concerned about getting caught in a riot and wants to get out as quickly and as safely as possible.
Intense emotions can spread like wildfire in a group of people, and fear is the most contagious one. When a mass of people start panicking, it’s easy to give in to fear, but you need to stay calm if you want to survive.
If you’re calm, you can think clearly…and if you can think clearly, then you can make good decisions and get yourself out of the situation safely.
Staying calm while everyone around you is panicking is easier said than done, so here’s one trick that will help you.
When people get scared, they take very shallow breaths and sometimes even hold their breath. You need to reverse that automatic response by consciously taking deep breaths.
Taking deep breaths calms you down and relieves fear and anxiety. You will be able to think clearly and act the more oxygen you can get to your brain.
Now that you’re calm and thinking clearly, you need to avoid being attacked by protesters. The easiest way to do that is to simply act like one of the protesters to “blend in.”
This tactic is a bit controversial, and I know you might not agree with what the protesters are fighting for…but I think going against your beliefs for a few minutes is better than being severely injured, or even beaten to death.
You don’t need to do anything extreme that might get you arrested, but you do need to try to act like other protesters. This might change depending on the protest, so look at how others around you are acting.
Move with the Flow
This tip could be the difference between getting tramped by an angry mob and escaping in one piece. Don’t fight the flow of people…go with it.
Always travel in the same direction of the mob. There will be much less resistance, and it’ll help you blend in just like acting like other protestors.
Going against the mob is a clear giveaway that you’re not one of them, and that could put you in danger.
Once you’re moving in the same direction as the mob, look around for a way out. Most protests will have a main body that makes up most of the protest, with significantly fewer people branching away from it.
Look for crossroads where you can split off as you’re walking with the mob, and do so at the first safe opportunity.
Avoid Law Enforcement
You might be tempted to run up to a member of law enforcement to ask for help. Don’t do it.
You need to understand that they aren’t there to help you. They’re there to stop the protest from spreading out of control.
They have no way to differentiate between you and a protester, so if you go up to one of them, you’re going to be treated like a protester. After all, you were just in the mass of protesters…who else would you be?
You will likely get tear gassed, tackled, handcuffed, and maybe even charged with a crime.
That’s why it’s better to just avoid law enforcement entirely. Besides, if you’ve been following this advice, you won’t need their help anyway. Just keep moving and blending in. You’ll get out eventually.
Have you ever been caught up in a protest? Share your story in the comments section below. We love to hear from you!