"Pick your battles carefully."
Sometime, most of the time, YOU don't get to pick the battle. The battle picks you! Yes, I choose where I go and with whom I associate but since the mobility of the BG is just as great, if not greater than, as mine I may just be reacting.
My first encounter was when I was helping a friend who was coming to town by bus, the station used to be in a good area now not. I had a choice only being a friend I really didn't. The three miscreants, fortunately, had brought knives to a gun fight. I only had to let my coat float open in the breeze and the encounter was over. I did know their intentions as I heard their discussion of what they were going to do to the w***e boy on their turf. This was before cell phones or common thugs complaining to the police.
Later, working in a store, I did not, and still don't, pick who walks in.
I have experienced the threat of reprisals. Years ago we took in some burgled goods, our records led to the arrest and conviction of two gang leaders. We were told by the Sacramento Sheriff's Deputies that our shop had been targeted by the rest of the gang. We did not change our SOP so were always armed anyway. Suspected gang members were casing the joint and saw two men carrying 1911s and one HBAR and one Benelli M1 Super 90 held at bird ready. They left a cloud of dust on the way and we never heard about them again. This is not everyone's solution, more's the pity.
Finally, each situation is different and requires a different solution. We are an adaptable race. Illigitimiti non carborundum.