Please take a look at Articles on self-defense/conflict/violence for introductions to the references found in the bibliography page.

Please take a look at my bibliography if you do not see a proper reference to a post.

Please take a look at my Notable Quotes

Hey, Attention on Deck!

Hey, NOTHING here is PERSONAL, get over it - Teach Me and I will Learn!

When you begin to feel like you are a tough guy, a warrior, a master of the martial arts or that you have lived a tough life, just take a moment and get some perspective with the following:

I've stopped knives that were coming to disembowel me

I've clawed for my gun while bullets ripped past me

I've dodged as someone tried to put an ax in my skull

I've fought screaming steel and left rubber on the road to avoid death

I've clawed broken glass out of my body after their opening attack failed

I've spit blood and body parts and broke strangle holds before gouging eyes

I've charged into fires, fought through blizzards and run from tornados

I've survived being hunted by gangs, killers and contract killers

The streets were my home, I hunted in the night and was hunted in turn

Please don't brag to me that you're a survivor because someone hit you. And don't tell me how 'tough' you are because of your training. As much as I've been through I know people who have survived much, much worse. - Marc MacYoung


The postings on this blog are my interpretation of readings, studies and experiences therefore errors and omissions are mine and mine alone. The content surrounding the extracts of books, see bibliography on this blog site, are also mine and mine alone therefore errors and omissions are also mine and mine alone and therefore why I highly recommended one read, study, research and fact find the material for clarity. My effort here is self-clarity toward a fuller understanding of the subject matter. See the bibliography for information on the books. Please make note that this article/post is my personal analysis of the subject and the information used was chosen or picked by me. It is not an analysis piece because it lacks complete and comprehensive research, it was not adequately and completely investigated and it is not balanced, i.e., it is my personal view without the views of others including subject experts, etc. Look at this as “Infotainment rather then expert research.” This is an opinion/editorial article/post meant to persuade the reader to think, decide and accept or reject my premise. It is an attempt to cause change or reinforce attitudes, beliefs and values as they apply to martial arts and/or self-defense. It is merely a commentary on the subject in the particular article presented.

Note: I will endevor to provide a bibliography and italicize any direct quotes from the materials I use for this blog. If there are mistakes, errors, and/or omissions, I take full responsibility for them as they are mine and mine alone. If you find any mistakes, errors, and/or omissions please comment and let me know along with the correct information and/or sources.

“What you are reading right now is a blog. It’s written and posted by me, because I want to. I get no financial remuneration for writing it. I don’t have to meet anyone’s criteria in order to post it. Not only I don’t have an employer or publisher, but I’m not even constrained by having to please an audience. If people won’t like it, they won’t read it, but I won’t lose anything by it. Provided I don’t break any laws (libel, incitement to violence, etc.), I can post whatever I want. This means that I can write openly and honestly, however controversial my opinions may be. It also means that I could write total bullshit; there is no quality control. I could be biased. I could be insane. I could be trolling. … not all sources are equivalent, and all sources have their pros and cons. These needs to be taken into account when evaluating information, and all information should be evaluated. - God’s Bastard, Sourcing Sources (this applies to this and other blogs by me as well; if you follow the idea's, advice or information you are on your own, don't come crying to me, it is all on you do do the work to make sure it works for you!)

“You should prepare yourself to dedicate at least five or six years to your training and practice to understand the philosophy and physiokinetics of martial arts and karate so that you can understand the true spirit of everything and dedicate your mind, body and spirit to the discipline of the art.” - cejames (note: you are on your own, make sure you get expert hands-on guidance in all things martial and self-defense)

“All I say is by way of discourse, and nothing by way of advice. I should not speak so boldly if it were my due to be believed.” - Montaigne

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Liabilities in Teaching Martial Arts, Karate and Self-Defense as Instructors

Blog Article/Post Caveat (Read First Please: Click the Link)

As I continue my studies of karate and martial arts for self-defense, sport, combatives, fighting, etc., it is becoming clearer and clearer that we as sensei, instructors and mentors need to take consideration as to our liabilities in the roles and disciplines we teach. 

Over the last forty or so years I have taught karate for sport and self-defense in a dojo. That dojo was actually sponsored by the Marines while I was on active duty and then by the Navy as a civilian teaching under the auspice of the MWR or Moral, Welfare and Recreation at a base where I lived. I never once took a look at the liabilities I might have incurred as either a Marine teaching Marines, Sailors and Dependents nor as a civilian teaching Navy, Dependents and Civil Service Civilians. Today, I wonder what would have happened if someone experienced grave injuries in training or grave bodily harm or death using what I taught in self-defense. 

As my understanding and knowledge have matured these last ten years or so I have come to believe that I lived, trained and taught under the protection of simply blind “LUCK.” I thought to myself, what would have happened as a Marine if someone was injured. I remembered how a Marine coming back from leave went to sick call for a severe sunburn. He was placed on no duty then light duty but when he turned the chit from the corpsman to the command First Sergeant he didn’t at that moment even consider he would be in trouble. He was, he received what the Marines called “office hours” and was fined and restricted to barracks for damaging government properly and the inability to perform his duties due to his malfeasance. If I had injured a Marine and under the governing of MWR, could I have been liable for making or contributing to a Marine being unable to perform his duties? Would the command allow leeway if it was under MWR? As to any dependents, would the civilian parent have the option of suing me and the Marines for negligence if injured, etc.? 

In truth, back in those times circa 70’s and early 80’s, I don’t think that would have happened unless it could be determined that I took training to an excessive level resulting in some catastrophe. I do believe the civilian dependent side could have taken that to some civil suit and even criminal charges and it was LUCK that took me through that time. 

I trained and taught as a civilian outside of the military and civil service umbrella through a dojo owned and operated by another civilian teaching Isshinryu in my local area. I never once during my time in that dojo even remotely considered whether he had a license or insurance to cover liabilities if something went awry. 

I found out that the guy running that dojo didn’t have a license, didn’t have a business sellers permit (California) and didn’t have any liability insurance to cover any situations and events that would have resulted in law suits and even criminal charges, etc. I firmly believe that he and the dojo would have suffered a great deal of economic ruin and even jail time if anyone experienced anything more than minor injuries in the dojo and the fact that none of them ever had to apply their self-defense in a real attack. 

I truly and wholeheartedly believe that instructors, sensei and mentors of karate, martial arts and especially self-defense are liable for any injuries, grave bodily harm and even death should they occur in the dojo, at competitive events and especially if they find a need to apply their self-defense - assuming what was taught as self-defense actually worked. Even that, if it failed to work, leaves an opening for the student to sue his sensei, instructor and/or mentor - oh, what a pisser.

I also believe sincerely and wholeheartedly that many martial artists, karateka and self-defense practitioners both teachers and students are not learning all that is critical to properly applying in a legal way self-defense and I also sincerely and wholeheartedly believe that they live, breath and participate in these endeavors with a huge amount of LUCK that seldom does a student encounter such extremes both in the dojo and on the streets except in very rare case. Cases often about folks who work and live in socially acceptable violent environments. 

Example: Student leans the deadly technique guaranteed to stop an attacker instantly. They frequent environments where alcohol and testerone are involved along with the ever fun monkey antics all that brings. They have an attitude that they can handle anything because their sensei told them so. He encounters an angry person who escalates it all the way up to that first overhand punch. The student didn’t try to avoid it, didn’t try to vocallly communicate the need to avoid violence and leave nor did he try to assess what level of force was acceptable to stop that attack. As a matter of fact, for this one example, he didn’t even try to defect the punch and he didn’t even see that his attacker was backing away to continue the monkey dance and he used his ultimate self-defense move. 

He punched the guy in the throat and followed up with a couple of blows to the head when the guy fell backward and slammed his head on the hard floor. He stopped moving instantly but the uber self-defense guy caught up in the adrenal rush and the monkey drive to finish him off kick him a few times in the ribs then head before others pulled him off. 

Without going into details, the way I described the situation and event if perceived and witnessed both by observers and their cell phone cameras this incident would likely end up in arrest and prosecution because it is not Self-defense - it is and was aggressive mutual fighting and that is illegal. The guy on the floor most likely is dead and that is going to be that. 

In short, I wonder when the luck of the industry is going to end. I see many events in today’s society that indicates it is only a matter of time before someone somewhere decides to sue or prosecute, etc., or demand that the industry be organized and governed by local, state and federal laws if not already so that we have more avenues to take people to task with the oscillating fan gets hit by whatever.

I like luck, it has its purpose and benefits but I don’t like or rely on luck for everything and anything. I like to have the knowledge, understanding and experiences along with all the requisite tools to get the job done with minimal liability, fuss and damage. It led me to drop trying to open a commercially viewed dojo for karate and self-defense, it is just too expensive and it is also, if you look, actually subject to a lot of restrictions. I suspect it has traveled under the radar all this time simply because of the LUCK involved.


Bibliography (Click the link)

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