Lots of food for thought, here.
It’s been six days since BJ Baldwin survived a gunfight with two assailants, and Baldwin finally took to Instagram to update his fans in a thoughtful multi-part Instagram Stories series. You can still find the 31-part story on his personal Instagram. In the update Baldwin first thanked his fans for all the love and support these past few days but also dropped some preliminary information on his attacker including a reminder to all his fans that there’s good in anyone, despite what they might do.
I’ll write out verbatim the most important parts of his updates below and here’s where on his personal Instagram you can find his update.
Thanks to his fans
First, BJ expressed his utmost thanks to all his fans who reached out to him. Coincidentally, someone who knows his face, at least, shouted out, “Glad you’re OK, brother” while he was filming himself.
“I love and appreciate you guys so much and it really shows that you care about me and my well being, that you care about Tori and her well being. My respect for those of you who have reached out just went through the roof and I definitely feel loved.“
Baldwin then gently told fans to, in so many words, to give him his privacy in the upcoming days asking details about this harrowing encounter.
“There’s definitely a lot that I learned from this and a lot that some other people can learn from this that are interested in my ability to educate but I’m not going to talk about that, not for a very long time with the exception of the people in my immediate environment. “
Insight on his attacker.
BJ then delves into what he knows about his attacker, mainly that he was a family man, had a support system where people love him, and we shouldn’t dehumanize him for his actions.
“This person that I got into a gunfight with, his name is Joey and he’s not a bad person. OK. He just got caught up doing some bad stuff and I happened to be in his line of fire.”
“Think about that, OK. Somebody comes up to my girlfriend and putting a gun to my face, with no demands with what appeared to be the intent to kill, murder, rob. He has my respect.“
“Because even though he did what he did to me. Put my life in danger, put my girlfriend’s life in danger, put a gun in my face, threatening deadly force, I’ve done a little bit of research, this guy probably had to do what he had to do and I don’t hate him for that.“
“I can appreciate him for that and I can respect that. I don’t think he’s a bad person for doing what he did. I don’t hate him, I don’t hold any grudges towards him, even though he tried to kill me, even though he tried to kill Tori, I don’t hold any grudges whatsoever. “
He wasn’t that bad of a guy, he had love, he had passion, he was a good father. He just felt he needed to do what he did.
Seeing the good.
Finally, BJ asks his fans that, if he could see the good in this guy, you, personally, should be able to see the good in anyone.
“Now, let this be a lesson to you all. If I can see the good in somebody that just tried to kill me and my girlfriend a few days ago, you should be able to see the good in anyone.”
“If I can do that and not hold a grudge against somebody that tried to shoot me in the face, to shoot my girlfriend in the face right in front of me, then you could be the person that also doesn’t holda grudge and spreads love and kindness in the world.“
(To Joey’s family and friends)
“If you’re watching, I’m so sorry you’re having to go through this…I needed to get home to my family and I will always fight to the death to make sure that happens, not out of hate, but out of love.“
What a powerful testament to seeing the goodness and humanity in anyone and everyone we encounter. No one would second guess BJ Baldwin and his emotions if he expressed anger directed towards Joey, and yet BJ went the opposite direction, expressing his respect to him and sympathizing with his loved ones.
BJ also touched on, whether he meant to or not, an important reason why people train to defend themselves if that situation arises. It’s not out of hate for someone else but to ensure that, at the end of the day, we get to go home and return to our loved ones. Self-defense training doesn’t have its roots in hate, but, in a real way, has its roots in love.
We can all take a page from BJ Baldwin’s book and re-evaluate both how we view our fellow man and how prepared are we to defend what we love the most if that time should cross our paths.