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Old 02-07-2006, 08:15 AM   #14
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Location: Orlando, FL
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 1,502
Re: Regarding James Smith

Ian Hurst wrote: much authority does the dojo have over your life outside the dojo.
When one goes into a public forum and makes an ass of oneself, while letting the readers know where one is training, it reflects poorly on ones organization and dojo. He represents them, in most any sense of the word, so it follows that they have something at stake. This is after all an Aikido forum, populated by Aikido people from throughout the world, for the purposes of bettering themselves and others through a mutually respective exchange of ideas. Would any instructor want one of their students to don a gi with a dojo patch, go to a seminar outside the organization, punch out another attendee, perhaps because of their gender or their race, and then flip off the instructor? I don't think so. How is what happened here any less offensive? IMHO, they handled it properly by voicing their concerns to the offender, and then distancing themselves from him once it became apparent that he was unwilling to cooperate. I don't feel this was unreasonable of them, as they have the right to teach (or to refuse) whomever they wish, and good reputations can take a lifetime to build, but only a moment to destroy. Worth protecting, I think.
Derek Gaudet wrote:
It is my hope that he will find someone to teach him to become a better individual, however doing that through Aikido now will be somewhat difficult...
Perhaps not. Many Aikido teachers do not teach children, because they don't feel they possess the maturity to concentrate and benefit from the training. This person's childish attitude is possibly just a passing phase, and when he grows up a little, he may very well be able to objectively renew his Aikido training. I hope he does (providing somebody doesn't KILL him first...).
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