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Old 03-09-2005, 08:08 AM   #115
L. Camejo
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Dojo: Ontario Martial Arts
Location: Mississauga, Ontario
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 1,423
Re: SD Question - Pizza Parlor Attack

I think in all things there is cause and effect, an interaction of energies, ideas, concepts, people etc. to bring about any result.

In one of my self defence courses a female student asked me how would she do some of the techniques while wearing her mini skirt and high heels with her hair well done. I indicated to her that if one is wearing such clothing then it may be best to avoid obvious situations where she may require protecting herself from attack, and have some ready protection (such as a group of friends who can protect her) for the not so obvious situations. Alternatively one may be able to dress in a manner where at least it is easier to run if attacked by someone, iow finding a balance between looking good and facilitating something else, such as the ability to escape a potential situation. It depends on one's priority, each choice has its pros and cons. Of course the next statement would be that she has a right to wear what she wants to, where she wants to - and she does. The problem with our rights and exercising them without proper judgement of our circumstances is that in our attempt at exercising our righteousness we may instigate or create favourable conditions for conflict depending on the circumstances of the situation. So in a sense "showing the other person that you are right" may not always be the right thing to do at the time.

Cell phone guy was very right and within his rights to address the woman's attempt at breaking the line and causing chaos. He stood up for his rights, but therein lies his contribution to the conflict, not that he is to blame for the other's behaviour, but an explosive does not detonate unless someone starts the detonation process, and this can be done all by oneself or by someone else. The manner in which Cell Phone guy dealt with the woman made him a bigger target to her aggression instead of helping to diffuse the situation. He used a comment that attempted to attack the pride of the woman, to make her feel ashamed at her behaviour and stop her action of breaking the line by succumbing to the social norm of joining the end of the queue. Had he worded his comments differently, or used a different tactic to get her to the back of the line, then the situation may never have happened, or at least he may not have been the preferred target. Another option he could have used could have been having the manager address the issue directly with the woman instead of becoming involved directly, or use a different approach in speaking directly to the woman in a calm tone to help her to move to the back of the line.

Now the fact is he may still fail at verbal persuasion, at this point he makes a choice whether he wants to escalate the situation to something more (maybe physical prompting) or simply let it go, since the next level of action may involve additional aspects which may end up costing more than just waiting a few extra minutes for his pizza (such as the BF coming in and knocking him out). The fact is he should have simply addressed the manager directly regarding the fact that he was there first when the line moved forward, so his order will still be taken, regardless of his physical position in the line after the woman broke it. At this point it is up to the manager to make the choice.

So I reiterate, it's not about "blaming the victim". It is nice and convenient to use the phrase to try and explain what some are saying, but it is not about blame, it is about the variety of responses to certain situations and choosing the most effective response in an attempt to restore the harmony of the situation. The reason for the recommendation of physical techniques and tactics was because the situation was allowed to escalate, if it had not, we would be recommending other strategies.

Whether we realise it or not, what we say and do does have an effect on those around us. The more aware we are of exactly what effect that may have on different characters, emotional levels, primal instinctive tendencies etc., the better we are at applying the right technique in the right situation, whether physical or otherwise.

Remember, because something is the right thing to say/do, does not mean that it is the right thing to say/do at the time depending on your ultimate objective.

Last edited by L. Camejo : 03-09-2005 at 08:12 AM.

--Mushin Mugamae - No Mind No Posture. He who is possessed by nothing possesses everything.--
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