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 Post subject: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:19 pm 
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What would you do if you were forced to face one or more of these individuals?
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So, firstly, what are gangs? Simply put they are groups of people sharing an identity, who claim a territory, interact predominantly among themselves, often wear distinctive clothing including colours, insignias, and ‘patches’, generally engage in criminal and anti-social activity regularly, create an environment of fear and intimidation, and often communicate with each other in unique ways. They will often display their affiliation with tattoos, scars, cigarette burns, sometimes adding a new tattoo or scar to display another victim that they have murdered. Gangs are present in almost every race, ethnicity, and economic and social circle. Both male and female gang members carry out acts of violence, drug deals, crimes, carry weapons, intimidate and lead by fear within their organisation.


Gangs participate in drug manufacturing and dealing, murder, rape, prostitution, fraud, car theft, stand-overs, kidnapping, extortion, human trafficking, burglary, assaults, weapons dealing, money laundering, vandalism (including tagging), among other things. Gangs operate as a ‘family’ (and I use that term very loosely), if you mess with one of them, you have messed with all of them, and that is not a place you ever want to find yourself.

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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:20 pm 
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These people are not a ‘joke’. Prospects (prospective gang members, new recruits) often have to pass initiation tests to be able to join. These sometimes include murder, assaults, rape, various crimes, taking the rap for something that another member did, or taking a severe beating to prove their ‘toughness’. Gang member reputations are made through crimes, particularly violent crimes.

Regardless of how we may feel about them, the danger they pose is real. Gang members operate on what we call the ‘three R’s’: Reputation, Respect, Revenge. Make no mistake, coming up against a gang member is going to have consequences (as most real violence does), probably very serious ones.

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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:24 pm 
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A gang member’s reputation is everything to them. They will protect it at all costs. A loss of reputation could mean becoming a target of rival gangs, or their own gang, and a loss of status among the gang. They treat it seriously, it is worth more to them than your wellbeing, or even maybe your life.

If the gang member feels his/her reputation has been damaged, there will be retribution. There has to be. If he doesn’t he may well be beaten, disgraced, expelled, or even murdered by his own gang.

Do you want to be the person in between that? Revenge is a huge deal for them. Finding yourself the target of that revenge is about as far away from comfort as you will find yourself. Because reputation is so huge, no assault or insult can be let go.


This is where any 'sense of empowerement' any of us may have from our martial arts knowledge...can put us in an oblong box.

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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Fri Dec 21, 2012 9:25 pm 
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Quite simply, anyone who willingly engages a gang member(s) when there were other options is misinformed or to be blunt, stupid.

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This is why I always encourage our students to learn from anyone and everyone they can, to take that information, question it, pull out the good bits and chuck away the bad. I personally encourage every student or course attendee to challenge me on anything I have said or taught, if I can’t back it up I shouldn’t be teaching it. It is potentially people’s lives at stake, not some game or ego-contest.

So my advice today is to question anything you are told about ‘self defence’ to make sure it is the right information for you. Don’t just simply and blindly trust someone’s advice because they are the teacher or ‘master’. Challenge and question, do it respectfully of course, but do it diligently.

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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 5:53 am 
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Hi Van , you simply do not engage , you avoid , take the opposite tactic

To face the unreasonable , you avoid , if you can't avoid you establish your reasonableness, and there unreasonableness.

If you cannot retreat , and cannot reason and have established threat , then you act deliberately


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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 6:42 am 
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Hi Marcus, such a pleasure to see you back on my forum.

Looking forward to some good discussions.

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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 5:52 pm 
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It depends on the particulars of the engagement. It would be different if you were engaging as a LEO, engaging as a passerby, or engaging because you mistakenly happen to walk into something you shouldn't have.

Three things all gang members have, especially those in the hierarchy -
A Bullsh-- detector.
A fear detector.
A disrespect detector. And there is a caveat to this last one. What might not be intended by you as disrespect might very well be taken by them as disrespect. Experience in this certainly helps.

With that being said, unless you go into a situation that has already escalated, talking (with those three things in mind) can ease a lot of potential dangers.

The type of people pictured are certainly no joke. They are also not Spartans. They're just people. Potentially dangerous ones for sure, and ones that I no longer spend any time around. But they're still just people.

Back in 02 I did a seminar with Billy Blanks. I used to spend weeks at a time with him in L.A, just training and teaching all day. One morning as we drove to the dojo, he told me "We're doing a seminar at USC this morning." I mumbled "okay" over my coffee. As we walk in I find that the seminar was for 100+ members of either the Crypts or Bloods (I don't remember any more)..(I suppose that could get me in trouble)

With the gang members were 40 chaperones, older men who were gang members in their youth but who had changed their lives and were now trying to help the kids from their hood. They had set up the seminar.
Billy and I started with a demo. Before he "wowed" them, a group of the young men were talking amongst themselves and got loud while Billy was speaking. I took that as disrespect for my teacher and friend. I stepped up and loudly reamed them a new you-know-what. " I ended with, "Don't you dare disrespect my teacher, he's here to help you."
I didn't plan it, it was a reaction. But it was taken as okay because it wasn't BS, fear or disrespect, or even taken as aggression. It was smooth sailing from there, especially when they got a load of Billy.

It was an interesting seminar. We spent a lot of time afterwards speaking with some of the chaperones. They said the kids respected us because we were honest. (I think they were also blown away by Billy)

I don't know how any of this helps, but I've used an honest, respectful attitude towards others of the same ilk here on the east coast on a couple occasions in the past. Even when I had to speak a little louder than I wanted in order to drive a point. So far, so good.


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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 5:59 pm 
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Great post, Otto. Thank you.

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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sat Dec 22, 2012 7:53 pm 
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It pretty much comes down to the event that we envisage. Some times you stand your ground, sometimes you walk away and sometimes you run like crazy :lol:
A lot of people may look like idiots but they will quite happily knife or shoot you. Some guys look uber tough but can't walk their talk


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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 5:20 am 
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Thanks Van ,good comments all round

its great to know your enemy , but to know yourself is key also

what will allow you to function to your potential , how will you manage your anxiety

how will you present yourself in a way that does not escalate and endanger your protection.

Does anyone think that martial arts skills are the answer to violence , or are tactics awareness and self awareness/control more relevant .

Yes all people are people , all can be handled , but all are unpredictable also .

control yourself and your paremiters and take that out of the equation , study others , study the ques

there are no rules , and no scenarios you can really fully imagine , but there is experience , common sense , the gift of fear , fear management , self belief .

Be the grey man , the resonbable man , establish there intent

punch kick kiai is when everything else fails .

theres a lot more to this martial arts conduct thing , its not esoteric or religon , but it needs training as much as the physical .

we all stumble along the way , but the goal must be when the conflict starts there is no doubt , then win or loose you come out the best you can .


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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 2:14 pm 
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Good post Stryke...you hit upon points usually not deemed to be relevant in the 'self empowerment' of physical training.
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theres a lot more to this martial arts conduct thing , its not esoteric or religon , but it needs training as much as the physical.
I agree.

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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 3:54 pm 
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I don't believe that it can be trained. You only have to look at internet forums, where there is so much unintended disagreement and confusion over what is said. With gangs etc it is a part of culture. The gangs of the UK are totally different to those in the US or elsewhere, how you speak to people is very important. Look of the clip of the girl that I posted, she got hit because she looked at a guy funny, and that is all it takes.
I always try to be inconspicuous, I wouldn't wear expensiove clothes in certain areas or jewelry....funny thing is I used to wear a barbour jacked, and in the UK if you wear one of them you are either landed gentry or an armed robber, in my area there are no landed gentry so I guess I got taken for the latter :lol:


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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 8:23 pm 
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I don't believe that it can be trained.


What specifically cannot be trained Ray? I don't understand your statement.

What did Marcus refer to as to 'can be trained'? We first must agree on what that definition is to avoid confusing follow up posts.

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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Sun Dec 23, 2012 8:49 pm 
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I don't believe that you can fully train for even imagined scenarios
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Does anyone think that martial arts skills are the answer to violence , or are tactics awareness and self awareness/control more relevant .

Yes all people are people , all can be handled , but all are unpredictable also .
Unless you can see a threat you can't defend against a threat. This is my experinces speaking. I know too many people who don't see the threat, they don't look for the bad things that can happen, they don't read situations correctly, or they assume people are as nice as they are.......as to training for it.usual scenario training is having somebody in a blue suit shouting at you.then you decide when you have to attack........the training is really for people who have never been in a fight and who have never thrown a punch in anger or defence. Let me put it another way, I have never seen training that sufficiently and realistically addresses this problem


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 Post subject: Re: Your potential enemy
PostPosted: Mon Dec 24, 2012 12:51 am 
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Good discussion
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Unless you can see a threat you can't defend against a threat. This is my experiences speaking.


This is very true and a well known fact of violence dynamics familiar to all who take up martial arts.
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they don't look for the bad things that can happen, they don't read situations correctly.


True, and this exactly what needs to be trained for and it can.

People who have been there many times such as a Rory Miller can teach these aspects of violence dynamics exceedingly well. Even if one is not able to train directly under Rory or others like him…a read of one of his books 'Facing violence' teaches the basics of critical concepts of such confrontations, that if practiced along with the physical, go a long way to avoid falling blind into the trap.

I suggest all readers to become familiar with the following life saving concepts:

1.The monkey dance

2. The group monkey dance that points out to violence occurring when an outsider is caught within the threat group's territory…that serves to strengthen the bond within the group, causing fear and impressions of merciless powers.

3. The educational beat down…where sub-societies [gangs] use violence as an easy way to solve problems as opposed to talking. Being rude and disrespectful in some societies will get you severely beaten or killed. Generally if you are stupid or strutting with a sense of empowerment when you should be demurely polite, when caught in the jaws of a shark, the educational beat down can be merciless.

~~

What Rory teaches here as 'concepts' of violence dynamics is what can be 'trained' to affect the mind set of the individual who may think he has all he needs with some martial arts skills and or some weapons on his person.
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as to training for it. Usual scenario training is having somebody in a blue suit shouting at you. then you decide when you have to attack


Generally this is useful to condition a person to handle/manage the adrenaline dump as well as automatically assess the situational circumstances of infinite varieties.

This is precisely the way it was taught by john Farnam and Mas Ayoob in a 'Duelatron' scenario with deadly weapons…the objective being to teach someone to think subconsciously of the unintended consequences of doing vs. not doing. Very effective teaching method when death by weapons is imminent.

I am pretty sure this is what Marcus was referring to. If not…these are and always have been my views on the subject matter.

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