By Kevin Wilkerson, PubClub.com Nightlife Blogger
Nine people killed and several others wounded in Philadelphia.
Six people dead in Sacramento.
Two dead in Meza, Arizona.
Two shootings on consecutive weekend in my birthplace, a normally quiet small Southern city, Chattanooga, TN.
With all these mass shootings – 240 in 156 days – there is a very legitimate question, particularly among people who might want to travel to the States from countries where shootings are a race occurrence: is it safe to go to bars and nightclubs in America?
The ones listed above were all in nightlife areas or in places where people go out at night. And yes, it’s worrisome and gives even this nightlife veteran some pause.
Heck, right out my door in the wild and fun Gaslamp Quarter of San Diego, two shootings happened within a few weeks of each other fairly recently on streets where I walk all the time. Each of those involved a random individual with a history of violence with a “ghost gun” looking for trouble (something I always avoid but some people are attracted to it like moths to a light) but it sure does make me more alert. Fortunately, I have noticed several SDPD officers patrolling the Gaslamp in response to these incidents.
I won’t even go to Mission Beach anymore after sunset because a park across from the famous “Big Dipper” roller coaster has had a lot of violence of late. You can even Google “mass shooting today” and get 321,000,000 results.
How To Avoid Violence In Nightlife Areas
I will never understand why people love to watch – and sometimes get involved in – altercations. Whenever I see something, whether its in a bar, nightclub or on the street, I pull a Wayne Gretzky. By that I mean I get the heck out of the way, like he did when a fight broke out at a hockey game. I either leave the bar or go the other direction in it or if anything happens on the street, I immediately turn down another street.
Know Where You Go Out At Night
The area you go out in can also make a difference in avoiding trouble areas. Check the crowd. Are they smiling and friendly? This is the biggest way to avoid trouble at bars, nightclubs and in nightlife areas.
Be Aware Of Your Surroundings At All Times
When you go out, be aware of your surroundings at all times. Notice people around you so you can spot potential trouble areas ahead of time. When I’m in a new area, I will often walk around it before going into a bar so I am comfortable with it. I also want to know how to get back to my hotel or wherever I am staying for the night. That’s good advice anytime, by the way.
As horrible as they are, these mass shootings are not happening all over America. Chances are you will be safe when going to bars and nightclubs in the USA. However, anything can happen at anytime and sometimes you can be in the wrong place at the wrong time. Overall, tho, you can stay safe as long as you follow the tips in this article.