Re: Just how real is violence? And where does Aikido stands in all of this?
There are places and situations that are simply not safe to wander into for the average person. No one should ever be accosted or assaulted simply for walking in the wrong neighborhood or similar, but it does happen. That person doesn't deserve the result, but shouldn't be terribly surprised if something negative happens, even if they remain civil and faultless in their conduct. Obviously if one is looking for trouble and conducting himself in an uncivil and rude manner, he should control his own behavior (or regulate his own conduct) to avoid an incident. As Brian said, if he does not, his conduct is likely to be regulated (or corrected) by some entity, whether it be the criminal justice system, the civil courts, the displeasure of his own friends, or perhaps at the hands of another knucklehead who has a similar mindset. It didn't appear to me that Brian was suggesting that he had an obligation or a right to correct the behavior of another, but merely suggested the conduct would deserve correction in some manner and that it would eventually happen.
Each one of us has the right and should be free to walk down any street at any time. In most cases we are. But there are some places in the world, this country, and even in my home town where it isn't the best and safest idea. I can think of no place in the world where I could count on being safe if I chose to act aggressively, rudely or violently. Consequently I choose to regulate/control/temper my personal behavior so I'm not viewed as a dangerous knucklehead to others.
At least that's how I interpreted Brian's posts.