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I haven’t cried in a while at the news.  I cried today when I got done consulting and finally looked at the news.

No one is able to post a blog right now without looking at the situation in CT.

Everyone will jump on bandwagons…pro-gun, anti-gun, sell some books, sell some videos.  Within a week everyone will try to have a video or book about this situation and how to address it.  I am already seeing it, the soft marketing.

It’s a kneejerk reaction within a market place to capitalize on anything that relates to a product.  Our product is violence and it’s prevention…and people have to put food on the table.   I think this is the area of our industry that we really have to look at and have an honest discussion about the industry and look at some truth in advertising, or atleast culpability.

Everyday I see some ‘secret hand to hand fighting method’ and ‘skills the army doesn’t want you to know about.’

When 9/11 happened suddenly everyone is the master of fighting in an airplane.  Guys I knew who couldn’t fight their way out of a puppy farm were suddenly Steven Segal on an airplane, throwing the food cart at terrorists and videoing it.

Somewhere someone has filmed themselves fighting in the grocery store aisles and is waiting for their chance to show using Nutella to kill a man….if only there was crime in the nutella aisle.

Never once did I see people talk about the decades of psychological experience martial art systems and styles have and how it could assist in identifying a threat before the airplane.  What could we do to help teach discipline under distraction to the TSA agent, or the school monitor.  There is a consistent drum banging that we could ground and pound in row 18 and choke them out on in the exit row with a credit card…ignoring much of what we are taught about how to look for predators.

Violence sales…but is that our problem?

I am prepared to look for the influx of postings, ‘If only __insert martial art instructor__ was in that school.  Buy his video.’  ‘If only all the teachers had known __style___ this would have been stopped.  School districts should hire us.’  Or, ‘If they had bought my book I made 6 months ago this could have been stopped.’

The truth is – you can’t stop crazy.  I know first hand.  I’ve seen things I can’t explain.  You can only try to slow it’s advance and put barriers in the way to prevent it from reaching you.  The tortured soul in CT killed his parents, took their guns, and slaughtered a room of babies.  As our president put it eloquently, ‘these are our children.’

A 16 foot tall Bruce Lee is just a bigger target when a man like this is 20 feet away with two pistols and firing.

Your super secret martial arts the army doesn’t want anyone to learn does nothing to stop these parents from crying, or the next time it will happen.

Something is broken in American culture – we have had guns since the beginning.  30-40 years ago there were no school shootings.  Something changed in us as a people, we became desensitized as we remove death from our lives, from the food we eat to placing our grandparents in nursing homes, and we are seeing this come home to roost as our children lose what makes martial art so hard to teach:  the unwillingness of the human mind to injure another human, especially a child.

This is a new level of crime we can not address with laws…we have to address with a cultural change outside of a firearm or a police guard at a school.  Except for the rare case of mother-child murder, we have never seen this symptom of the cancer that is our distance from death.  We’ve never seen babies murdered…it begs a question deeper than ‘should we ban guns.’  It begs the question, ‘What have we become that we can create this.’

Like it or not, it does take a village to raise a child, it always has.  When I was a child, my neighbor could spank me, and then my dad would spank me twice as hard because he had to deal with the neighbors.  Somewhere along the line, something was lost – and the village withdrew, replaced by internet, video games, Youtube, and a part of our society where instead of reporting a tortured soul, it’s encouraged.  The heavy hand of the community was replaced by fear.

We, as the martial art and combative industry, must be above this.

For our industry, we need to take a look at the reality of life and work within our own circles to better educate people without a fist or a kick. We need to have a truly realistic expectation of what skill is and most of the time, it is the skill of the mind and observation that save the day….or prevent that day from coming.

If you are fighting, you’re too late.

I’m in an airport typing this – a pretty girl is buying sunglasses on her dad’s credit card for $196.08 next to me.  The woman next to me is reading her magazine.  The man across from me is asleep.

The police just came up and took two people away two rows over from me.

These people didn’t notice….they never saw it…they didn’t care.

That’s a problem…

And the 13 year old next to me on a tablet PC playing Call of Duty is a problem.

They don’t see the threat, and he sees death as a game…

This is a problem the choke out move in the lavatory won’t solve but education and prayer will.


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