What’s in your utility belt?

Weapons. Everybody wants weapons. Stun guns, real guns, batons, staffs, knives, swords. Flame Throwers?
Holy Nazi Frog Men! There must be a war going on in every back alley in the world? Is there? Have you asked yourself that question? Are you being realistic about what you will encounter on the streets? Or are you still pretending just a little bit?
If you are carrying a sword around on the streets you are pretending. “It’s just decorative.” Then why do you need it? “To make the costume look authentic” Ahh, you’re a cosplayer.. “I’m an RLSH!” No you’re not. You are lying to yourself and those around you.
I saw a video of the great Phoenix Jones. There is no denying that he is the most visible of us. The one most recognized by the public. And the one who is “setting the bar” by which we will all be judged. Unfortunately.
Anyway here he was on camera attending to an injured civilian. The man was lying prone on the ground. Bleeding from an injury to his temple. Phoenix Jones was dancing around in concern, seemingly confused. Then he calls to someone off camera for towels.  PJ is not carrying a first aid kit.
Bullet resistant vest? Check.
Stun Gun Baton? Check?
Thousands of dollars worth of custom made costume? Check.
Public Relations camera guy? Check.
First aid kit? Who needs it!…
I have no beef with PJ personally. I don’t even know him. This is not a PJ blog. This is a “What you need to have with you on patrol” blog. We should all be setting a good example. We should all be setting a much better example than that video of Phoenix Jones is setting.
Your number 1 priority, the number 1 reason to be an RLSH is to help people. Regardless of your ultimate mission you are there to help. The best way to help people is to be prepared. Training comes first. Then the gear.
Can’t afford the training? Volunteer some time to the Red Cross. They offer first aid training, CPR classes, and other life saving procedure classes. And they will teach you about the Good Samaritan Laws in your area. Free to volunteers. Free! No excuses not to do it. Go there now!

>>American Red Cross<<

If you are an RLSH to help people, then put in some of that time at the Red Cross. Look at it as patrol time. If you are not willing to volunteer your time doing that, you should be questioning your reasons for being an RLSH. We are not here to fight, we are here to help.
After you have a bit of training, and hopefully some real world understanding, then you can get these items for your utility belt. These are essential.
The Gadgets you should have with you always:

  1. Get a first aid kit. Know how to use it.
  2. Carry a cell phone to call for help. Always call for help first.
  3. Carry a camera to make a visual record of events
  4. Carry a flashlight to see in the dark areas.

Notice there are no weapons on that list. All weapons are optional. All of them. You don’t “need” any of them.
Are weapons helpful? In certain circumstances, yes. But those circumstances are a lot more rare, than someone needing first aid. Saving a life is going to make you a lot more of a hero, than fighting off a team of Nazi Frog Men.