Perhaps I should crawl back under a rock and ignore this thread, but when have I
ever been known to ignore someone calling my name?
<u>Testa-sensei:</u> I don't envy you on this one!
You did a pretty good job of pointing out the potential areas of inflammation and how they may be modified. Best of luck...
<u>GEM-sensei:</u> It was never
my intention on that previous thread (which you've reposted) to be insulting or abusive in any way. I've re-read that thread multiple times now and must say that I stand by what I wrote. I apologize if my posts in that thread (or my lack of contrition) have caused anyone to feel unwelcome. Regarding Ian... we have our differences of opinion, but I feel that he respects mine and I respect his. There simply aren't nearly as many "issues" between us as some people seem to think. We're pretty civil in general and, at least from my perspective, we've given each other lots of "food for thought". If anything I've ever written has offended you, my sincerest apologies. Please feel free to e-mail me or even admonish me openly if I have or ever do "step out of line".
<u>Rory:</u> You've been there. You don't just talk the talk, you walk the walk. I hope you know that I have the utmost admiration and respect for you. However, I must say that, having re-read the aforementioned thread, I don't believe that I was a party to "gang attacking" anyone. The questions, opinions, confusion, and beliefs that I wrote in that thread were real
. They were not meant to attack in any way. I was sincerely attempting to gain an understanding of a belief and position which I percieved to be
completely contradictory. In fact, when re-reading that thread, I distinctly recalled (and another poster on that thread stated) that Van Canna-sensei had asked legitimate questions concerning the efficiacy of VSD in the real world situations of mind-numbing street violence which were never truly answered
. I have found, and your own posts have concurred, that there are
exactly those types of situations that Canna-sensei was wondering about... the types of "street violence" situations where no manner of VSD is going to stop the perp from going physical. Canna-sensei has been there, you have been there, and I
have been there... all of us with varying degrees of success depending on situtation, circumstance, and event.
Personally, I never had a problem with the characterization that martial artists are (in general) overly macho or overly testosterone-laden. Perhaps those martial artists who (IMNSHO) are more directly insulted by those statements (I.E.: women
martial artists who I sincerely doubt fit those characterizations in most instances... at least the ones that I
know and admire), would take issue. In my case, I could care less about such generalizations and stereotypes. I've been painted with the broad brush of erroneous stereotyping enough times in my life that I usually just consider the source and ignore such things. (David Moy is a fantastic example, which I think of at those times, of how to let such comments fade into the dust.) I had a friend who espoused the position that any
use of violence was a moral failure for them, but would
respond physically in certain circumstances. I was attempting to understand what I felt was a contradiction. I made no
"moral judgement" on anyone's choice to be a self-proclaimed "radical pacifist" (an admirable stance as I already wrote in that other thread). My postings were my attempts and my need to understand something that I have been unable to reconcile in my own mind.
In re-reading and recalling that thread (and at risk of "patting myself on the back"), I must say that keeping the forum in mind, I intentionally
didn't push the descrepancies in the position and counter-arguments that were given. I simply wanted to understand and reconcile those beliefs so that I could better understand my friend.
I hope that clarifies my purpose in those posts and puts to rest any thoughts that I had anything against anyone personally. I didn't and I don't. We each have our own beliefs. I simply feel that I have gained my beliefs from traveling down a truly reasoned and logical path based on my
life experiences. YMMV, but I feel that if we both discuss something from a logical, reasonable, fact-based, thought-out point of view that we should come to the same (or at least very close) conclusions. With that in mind, I will also tell you that since those posts, my belief in my positions as stated in that thread are even more
adamant. Is there a place for VSD in a confrontation? Hell yes! There's a place for VSD in everyday life! Is VSD the ending of every confrontation? Hopefully, but I, personally will not
bet the lives and safety of my
loved ones on that result! If I'm ever again
confronted with a "mind-numbing street violence" situation targeting myself or my loved ones will I view it as a "moral failure" if there is a need to transform a living carpophage into fertilizer? Hell no!
<BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote
turning a dark corner and finding him face to face with three punks with guns and knives.
Sometimes you get the opportunity to try VSD and sometimes you don't even get the chance to speak at all... I just wish all the self-proclaimed "experts" (who I often wonder if they've even ever been
in that alleyway) would understand your (and my) point about the difference between "justifiable" and "UNjustifiable" violence (and the unavoidable need for a physical response in some situations).
Take care and be good to each other...