In a classic study, researchers Betty Grayson and Morris I. Stein asked convicted criminals to view a video of pedestrians walking down a busy New York City sidewalk, unaware they were being taped. The convicts had been to prison for violent offenses such as armed robbery, rape, and murder.
Within a few seconds, the convicts identified which pedestrians they would have been likely to target. What startled the researchers was that there was a clear consensus among the criminals about whom they would have picked as victims—and their choices were not based on gender, race, or age. Some petite, physically slight women were not selected as potential victims, while some large men were.
The researchers realized the criminals were assessing the ease with which they could overpower the targets based on several nonverbal signals—posture, body language, pace of walking, length of stride, and awareness of environment. Neither criminals nor victims were consciously aware of these cues. They are what psychologists call "precipitators," personal attributes that increase a person's likelihood of being criminally victimized.
The researchers analyzed the body language of the people on the tape, and identified several aspects of demeanor that marked potential victims as good targets. One of the main precipitators is a walking style that lacks "interactional synchrony" and "wholeness." Perpetrators notice a person whose walk lacks organized movement and flowing motion. Criminals view such people as less self-confident—perhaps because their walk suggests they are less athletic and fit—and are much more likely to exploit them.
Just like predators in the wild, armed robbers often attack the slowest in the herd. People who drag their feet, shuffle along, or exhibit other unusual gaits are targeted more often than people who walk fast and fluidly.
That criminals are attuned to cues of vulnerability makes sense given that most criminals, especially murderers, are looking for people who will be easy to control. Even rape is motivated less by sex and more by the desire for control and power.
Like I said before, putting blinders on. I never carry bags from the store, I always push a cart. If we have 1 cart, the wife pushes it. I watch everyone from the minute I leave the car until the minute we are secure inside the car and moving. I make eye contact with everyone, never looking down, and always scanning my environment. My wife being raised in Detroit has made her the same automatically. Not looking like a target is #1. If you look like you are going to break your foot off in someone's ass, you are typically avoided. Even the inmates at work tell me I always look pissed off and ready to snap out. I tell them I look like this all the time.
From the way the article reads, he had already packed his bags in the car as he opened his wife's door and let her in, then went around to his door. That was when he was surrounded. A gun to my head and there is a good chance I am a goner, but I am not going out without a fight and they damn sure better pull the trigger. If they don't, I chase every one of them down and shoot them. Period. Will I go to court? Yep, but I will take my chances. Don't miss, and for God's sake if you are going to draw down on me pull the trigger before I have a chance to get my gun out or you wont have a chance to wish you did.
Some call it paranoid, and I am good with that. When the wolf comes calling, I will answer his call with swift violence. Sometimes violence IS the only answer.
And Fred, I was being sincere. Some people don't use the word Christmas, it offends them. Especially liberals. They want the bible out of everything...