Welcome to AikiWeb Aikido Information
AikiWeb: The Source for Aikido Information
AikiWeb's principal purpose is to serve the Internet community as a repository and dissemination point for aikido information.

Sections
home
aikido articles
columns

Discussions
forums
aikiblogs

Databases
dojo search
seminars
image gallery
supplies
links directory

Reviews
book reviews
video reviews
dvd reviews
equip. reviews

News
submit
archive

Miscellaneous
newsletter
rss feeds
polls
about

Follow us on



Home > AikiWeb Aikido Forums
Go Back   AikiWeb Aikido Forums > General

Hello and thank you for visiting AikiWeb, the world's most active online Aikido community! This site is home to over 22,000 aikido practitioners from around the world and covers a wide range of aikido topics including techniques, philosophy, history, humor, beginner issues, the marketplace, and more.

If you wish to join in the discussions or use the other advanced features available, you will need to register first. Registration is absolutely free and takes only a few minutes to complete so sign up today!

Reply
 
Thread Tools
Old 04-22-2008, 04:37 AM   #151
rob_liberti
Dojo: Shobu Aikido of Connecticut
Location: East Haven, CT
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,402
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Interesting facts about the "cycle of abuse".

It makes more sense to me that the proper way to deal with this at its roots is to proactively start new "cycles of compassion". (Not stupid compassion). You have to give up on most ideas about being a traditional parent, but it seems to me that if we managed to actually be consistent in compassionate and empathetic based interaction with our kids (all the time, not just when they are behaving "properly") it seems logical that THAT would dramatically reduce the numbers of abusers in the world. And further, if a majority were all operating that way, it would be easier for them to detect those people who are more dangerous in general and specifically because there would be fewer weaknesses in children to exploit.

Any actions like speaking up about such things (regardless of the consequences) are all about protecting those who have less power. That is certainly in line with my views on aikido in general. While, I don't see aikido in its current typical practice as particularly good in a marital context in terms of protecting others - it strikes me that the way to get our physical practice more in line with these ideals requires a fundamental shift in "listening" as well.

Rob
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2008, 10:15 AM   #152
Dan Rubin
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
Dojo: Boulder Aikikai
Location: Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 359
United_States
Offline
Re: The "cycle that isn't"

Quote:
Ellis Amdur wrote: View Post
The only difference between them and us seems to be we like vanilla ice cream and they like to sexually violate children.
Chilling (as in: scary).
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2008, 11:19 AM   #153
ChrisMoses
Dojo: TNBBC (Icho Ryu Aiki Budo), Shinto Ryu IaiBattojutsu
Location: Seattle, WA
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 910
United_States
Offline
Re: The "cycle that isn't"

Quote:
Ellis Amdur wrote: View Post
3. BUT - this is not true in sexual abuse. First of all, when uncontrolled studies are done, an incredible majority of sexual predators endorse being abused as children. I recall it was 75% or 80%. But when they did a controlled study, where one could actually establish the facts of the individuals lives, the figure went down to about 30%.
Ellis, thanks for your excellent posts in this thread.

I would like to point out that 30% sounds like a fairly significant number to me. I would note too that (if I read this correctly) we're looking at the percentage of sexual predators who were themselves abused as children, not the percentage of children who suffered abuse who themselves became sexual predators. I would suspect (and hope) that the numbers for society at large are much lower than 30% who had been victimized as children. While I certainly wouldn't go so far as to assert a causative relationship, I would say that we can see a correlation. I don't think that diminishes the point I think you were getting at (not everyone who was abused is doomed to become an abuser, nor is everyone who is an abuser someone who was abused). In my mind, it does show an increased likelihood.

My next comment is more to the general readership. There seem to be some posters who are not sure of the point of this kind of thread or perhaps the wisdom of posting an announcement like this when nothing has yet been proven beyond a shadow of a doubt. I feel that this kind of thing is important to discuss publicly because there is a mystique about long time Aikido practitioners (particularly instructors) that they are inherently moral superior beings. Many newer students (and parents) put a level of faith, trust and importance on these people which they simply do not deserve. Certainly we have all met some amazing, generous and humble people doing this stuff. But I've met a lot of abusive, arrogant, passive aggressive jerks along the way too. Many of them were highly revered by their students. I think it's extremely important for all of us to keep the human factor in perspective. My first Aikido teacher was never injurious or abusive to me, he never took advantage of children or women in the dojo. He did expect (and demand) an unhealthy amount of control over his students lives and finances. He also expected an extreme amount of reverence to be paid to himself. Many of us bought into that because we were young and had no other dojo experience to refer to. I'm not teaching much Aikido right now, but I do a fair amount of teaching in my sword line, and I have a few students/training partners who I find myself constantly reminding that I am not wise or special just because I have some experience swinging a sword around. It's critical for the kind of relationships I wish to foster in a dojo that I keep that level of reverence out. You put on funny clothes, start doing strange movements and many people will simply *want* to buy into something. Hopefully that will put this thread in the perspective I intended. It was not my with to start a witch hunt, or slander someone who has been charged with but not convicted of any crime. It is about putting the relationships with instructors and people in positions of authority in perspective. Perhaps something like this is happening elsewhere but the parents keep telling themselves, "...but he/she's an Aikido sensei, that could never happen..." I am all for respecting our teachers and seniors, but it's up to us to keep our eyes open for shoes under the curtain.

Chris Moses
TNBBC, "Putting the ME in MEdiocre!"
Shinto Ryu Iai Battojutsu
TNBBC Blog
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2008, 01:30 PM   #154
mathewjgano
 
mathewjgano's Avatar
Dojo: Tsubaki Kannagara Jinja Aikidojo; Himeji Shodokan Dojo
Location: Renton
Join Date: Feb 2005
Posts: 2,212
United_States
Offline
the heart of this discussion?

Christian,
That framed it very nicely for me, thanks. Perhaps one of the most important lessons my dad gave me was along this line of thinking. It has translated into so many aspects of my life I couldn't possibly thank him enough. In my opinion it is this kind of discerning awareness which epitomizes budo as I know it. On some level we're always forced to take the world around us at face value, but it's foolish to assume that what we see is all we'll get. The sad fact of things is that good people do bad things all the time. As a person who has taught children Aikido and who is training to be a teacher in the public education system I expect to be looked at with a critical eye (and potentially a distrustful one) and I think parents would be remiss not to do that. I hold many people in high regard; I see some people as truly great men and women, but even the greatest person on earth is only human.

Gambarimashyo!
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-22-2008, 10:56 PM   #155
rob_liberti
Dojo: Shobu Aikido of Connecticut
Location: East Haven, CT
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,402
United_States
Offline
Re: The "cycle that isn't"

Quote:
Christian Moses wrote: View Post
Ellis, thanks for your excellent posts in this thread.

I would like to point out that 30% sounds like a fairly significant number to me. I would note too that (if I read this correctly) we're looking at the percentage of sexual predators who were themselves abused as children, not the percentage of children who suffered abuse who themselves became sexual predators. I would suspect (and hope) that the numbers for society at large are much lower than 30% who had been victimized as children. While I certainly wouldn't go so far as to assert a causative relationship, I would say that we can see a correlation. I don't think that diminishes the point I think you were getting at (not everyone who was abused is doomed to become an abuser, nor is everyone who is an abuser someone who was abused). In my mind, it does show an increased likelihood.

<snip and especially>

I am all for respecting our teachers and seniors, but it's up to us to keep our eyes open for shoes under the curtain.
I would like to point out that 30% has got to be based on some minimal criteria where I strongly suspect that the definition of "abuse" used is not in line with my views. I suspect that what makes my radar of abuse is way under the radar of those who came up with those statistics.

I have learned a bit about child centric perception. It seems to be that it's got to be all about what the child feels. Basically, the child's perception of his experiences (treatment, relationships, etc.) is what counts, not a 1 to 1 mapping of similar behaviors - like a child who was molested grows up to be a molester. If the child feels violated on any level it seems likely that it can come out when they are an adult as victimization or predation. To say that some sexual predator was never sexually molested as a child doesn't mean that they were not violated or abused - in that grey area - sub clinical abuse zone. My definition of abuse (which include that grey area) would likely bring that 30% stat upward to say somewhere near 100%.

Lastly, this conclusion about cycle of abuse strikes me as an example of a common trick where no one actually claims that correlation and causation are mutually exclusive but just keeps talking authoritatively as if that is the case. Quite simply correlation does NOT mean "not causation". Science of late is plagued with that one.

See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lies,_d...and_statistics
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 03:10 AM   #156
CorkyQ
Dojo: Kakushi Toride Aikido
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 109
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

I'm not surprised my point was missed, because there is either an understanding of how we share the same nature as human beings none of whom are going to live a perfect life - or there is an ignorance of that fact.

Never once was it suggested the actions be condoned, only that the man in his human condition, be seen as redeemable. Never once was it suggested that steps not be taken to prevent painful things from happening, only that before we start in on self-righteous rants we realize that to err is human and to forgive is divine. Sympathy is not compassion. Sympathy is a sense of superiority masquerading as compassion.

There is no idiocy in true compassion, and if Osensei was right than it is at the heart of aikido.

We are aikidoists, and if we are to live up to Osensei's arguably most quoted description of aikido, we need to understand what the words "loving protection of all things" means. Osensei did not call his art "the loving protection of all things good" or "the loving protection of all things except murderers, rapists and thieves." He called it "the loving protection of all things."

He also said "By transforming those who appear as enemies into enemies no more, it leads to absolute perfection of self."

So yes, let's look at the situation with an eye for seeing that things like this don't happen again, but if they do, let them not draw us away from the ideals of our Founder's art.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 10:49 AM   #157
Dan Rubin
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
Dojo: Boulder Aikikai
Location: Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 359
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Corky Quakenbush wrote: View Post
So yes, let's look at the situation with an eye for seeing that things like this don't happen again....
Corky,

Do you have any suggestions as to how to see that things like this don't happen again?
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 11:07 AM   #158
Dan Rubin
  AikiWeb Forums Contributing Member
Dojo: Boulder Aikikai
Location: Denver, Colorado
Join Date: Feb 2002
Posts: 359
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Let my re-phrase the above post:

Corky,

What do you think would be an appropriate way to see that things like this don't happen again?
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 12:21 PM   #159
dragonteeth
Dojo: Elkton Ki-Aikido
Location: Virginia
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 108
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Corky please let me offer an analogy off topic (sort of) to illustrate the way I perceive most of us feel, because I don't think you get what we're saying either.

My five year old son likes to grab women's butts. Yep, the little guy started early. Right now it's cute (especially to the guys we know), but really it's very inappropriate and will cause him serious problems later in life if he doesn't stop. I know he has a problem with this, and so I make sure I avoid every possible situation where he can sneak in a quick feel. We've had discussions about inappropriate touching, and he's been both reprimanded and punished for disobeying the rules (amazing the amount of angst that taking away the Wii for a week will cause). It is my sincere hope that we can educate him out of this bad habit before he reaches the "not cute" age, but for now I do my best to avoid any situation that I know will entice him.

I don't restrict his ability to walk behind cute women because I don't like him. I do it to protect him (and the women) from the consequences of his inappropriate action. I monitor his movement closely, and I counsel him on correct behavior. If he fails in that behavior, he faces consequences which to him are rather severe. The consequence of not doing this now may get him smacked later if he's lucky. If he's not so lucky, he could find himself charged with sexual harrassment or assault, or even shot by an angry father or jealous spouse. By teaching him the socially accepted norm, I am expressing my love for him as his mother through good parenting, even if he disagrees with me.

The same thing is true with the accused in this case. If you go back and re-read the posts objectively (key word), you will see that there is no serious malice directed at the accused himself. Yes, there is ample disgust for what he is accused of doing, and rightly so. He hurt someone. But he also hurt himself. His career teaching is over. His ability to practice aikido at the level he previously practiced is also pretty much over unless he finds private adult training partners. His reputation is ruined in his community, and he will likely face incarceration. My bet is that, if you asked him, he would have been very glad to have had someone step in and stop all this before it happened. After all, he traded everything that was valuable in his life for a few stolen moments of inappropriate behavior. Rarely is it ever worth it.

So by preventing these things from happening in the first place, yes we ARE protecting all things as O Sensei commanded, including potential molesters. Furthermore, we help to protect him from himself by removing him from any situation that might encourage this to happen again. After all, habitual offenders always face stiffer penalties. And hopefully, by experiencing the consequences of his actions, he will learn what he should have perhaps learned as a five year old - invading a woman's personal space is wrong.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 02:56 PM   #160
Jennifer Yabut
 
Jennifer Yabut's Avatar
Dojo: Aikikai of Philadelphia
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 100
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Lori Snidow wrote: View Post
So by preventing these things from happening in the first place, yes we ARE protecting all things as O Sensei commanded, including potential molesters. Furthermore, we help to protect him from himself by removing him from any situation that might encourage this to happen again. After all, habitual offenders always face stiffer penalties. And hopefully, by experiencing the consequences of his actions, he will learn what he should have perhaps learned as a five year old - invading a woman's personal space is wrong.
Very well said. Thanks for sharing your own experiences. Dealing with troublesome behavior *now* will hopefully save both of you a whole world of grief much later.

"The ultimate aim of martial arts is not having to use them." - Miyamoto Musashi
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 03:02 PM   #161
Keith Larman
Dojo: AIA, Los Angeles, CA
Location: California
Join Date: Apr 2005
Posts: 1,604
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

I'll leave the religious aspects of your post alone as I don't see it as relevant.

This is the part I was responding to.

Quote:
Corky Quakenbush wrote: View Post
This is not a predatory monster, he is man whose crime it was to fall in love with a child who fell in love with him. A child who was the same age as Shakespeare's Juliet ...
I don't think I misunderstood you at all.

  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 03:46 PM   #162
Jennifer Yabut
 
Jennifer Yabut's Avatar
Dojo: Aikikai of Philadelphia
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 100
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Keith just reminded me of another point I wanted to make:

Quote:
Corky Quakenbush wrote: View Post
This is not a predatory monster, he is man whose crime it was to fall in love with a child who fell in love with him. A child who was the same age as Shakespeare's Juliet when her parents were admonishing her to find a husband so that she could start raising her family.

Like everyone else, I can think of a million reasons to call what this man may have done wrong, and I can say how I would never have fallen prey to the same temptations to which he fell prey, but I will never be able to say that I will not fall prey to some temptation that will cause harm to myself or someone else.
Corky, are you familiar at all with pedophilia: http://www.psychologytoday.com/condi...edophilia.html

This isn't just a simple "he fell in love with someone who happened to be a child". If the allegations *are* true, this most likely means he has some deep-rooted problems which aren't easy to "fix".

*edited to add: Using Juliet as an analogy is erroneous, since she fell in love with a fellow teenager - not a grown man.

"The ultimate aim of martial arts is not having to use them." - Miyamoto Musashi
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 03:52 PM   #163
Ron Tisdale
Dojo: Doshinkan dojo in Roxborough, Pa
Location: Phila. Pa
Join Date: Jun 2002
Posts: 4,614
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Bingo Jennifer...I would have thought the distinction obvious...but obviously...not.

Best,
Ron

Ron Tisdale
-----------------------
"The higher a monkey climbs, the more you see of his behind."
St. Bonaventure (ca. 1221-1274)
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 04:17 PM   #164
CorkyQ
Dojo: Kakushi Toride Aikido
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 109
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Thanks Dan and Lori for your responses.

For me, the answer to things like this is what aikido is about, because it is our connecting and entering that quells disharmony before it erupts into behavior with lasting negative consequences. In that regard Lori, I think you touched on how I would respond to Dan's question.

We tend to live self-absorbed lives, and it seems clear that this man and this child were living in kind of a world unto themselves until someone finally noticed. In our practice of aikido, don't we seek to maintain our connection, stay attentive to our partners, and blend with them in such a way that they don't come to harm. In a way we are constantly in a jiu waza randori in life, but as most of life's "attacks" have minimal negative consequences we tend to avoid rather than connect, bully who we can (even if in the softest way possible), and not bother with things that don't seem to have any relevance to our lives - yet.

Just image if there was, in this sensei's dojo, members who were more attentive in a connected way to either or both this teacher and his young student. My guess is that it wouldn't have gotten to the point of 85 progressively intimate emails - it wouldn't have even gotten to the first rumblings of sexual interest without someone saying something.

But what we tend to do is not notice that the teacher is giving a little extra attention to the young female student, not bother to stick around after class to help lock up the dojo, not approach our teacher with interest (non-accusational), not cultivate our intuition about things we would rather not have color our lives.

We have to face certain facts about living, and those are that largely we have no control over other people and what they do. But we can strive to take the things we learn in the dojo off the mat and into our lives. If our aikido is about self-defense, it will be rather limited, but if we can make our aikido about service to the world, as I believe was Osensei's intention, we can open our hearts to the world and be involved from a place of non-judgmental understanding that good people can be tempted to do bad things.

Someone can notice that the teacher and student are getting close, someone can say something about an article he or she read about some coach or teacher getting cozy with a student and how that disrupted lives, someone can not go home after practice to stay in the dojo until the lights are out, or take the time to volunteer to teach or help the kids' class. The key word is involvement. The teacher is going to recognize through the lack of "alone-time" with this student, through the non-intimate interest that other students and instructors show to the young female student, through having the void in the teacher's life that leaves an opening for this kind of seed to grow filled, that whatever feelings he may be developing will not be cultivated.

I always think of Terry Dobson's famous story on the train and how the old man made it his point to reach out non-judgmentally to the drunk and offer a connection so that the man's fundamental need could be met. This surely is the highest goal of aikido.

Lori, in reflecting on your son's situation, you mentioned that the guys think it's cute, and you even alluded to the idea you find it cute as well - and yeah it is kind of cute. But obviously the response has reinforced the behavior. Avoiding the situations where he might have a chance to do this though is a way of avoiding the problem instead of dealing with it.

The most fortunate aspect of your son's situation is that he is currently old enough to get away with it! But sooner or later he is going to grab the butt of someone who doesn't think it is so cute. I assume you have told him that he is touching people in an inappropriate way and that many people will have a very different response, and also when he gets positive acknowledgement from the guys that even though everyone got a kick out of it, that it really is inappropriate with an honest heartfelt explanation of why an invasion into someone's personal space is not respectful.

I'm not Dear Abby, but I bet if you made this sincere connection with him and anyone around who may be unwittingly encouraging him every time he does it, that he will stop, and probably after the first time. From my own experience as a father, when my kids did some thing that was embarassing my first reaction was to ignore it and hope it didn't happen again or skirt around the point or something else un-aikido like. But as I gain in my understanding of connection, I have realized how unabashed, non-judgmental honesty and understanding works wonders in creating harmony.

I realize that there wasn't specific calls for beheading over this incident, I was responding more to the lack of compassion in the form of callousness I saw generally in some posts. As you pointed out, Lori, this man's mistake has consequences of the highest magnitude, and he will suffer and is suffering as much as the thirteen-year-old girl has and will.

I think that one of the most amazing shows of compassion was Gandhi's refusal to condemn Hitler (while condemning his actions), because, as he stated, he understood that he had the same capacity within himself for the same actions. That he had the strength to deny that kind of evil made him no more worthy of compassion than Hitler, in his eyes. I expect that Osensei had that same level of spiritual understanding.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 06:27 PM   #165
CorkyQ
Dojo: Kakushi Toride Aikido
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 109
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Jennifer Yabut wrote: View Post
Keith just reminded me of another point I wanted to make:

Corky, are you familiar at all with pedophilia: http://www.psychologytoday.com/condi...edophilia.html

This isn't just a simple "he fell in love with someone who happened to be a child". If the allegations *are* true, this most likely means he has some deep-rooted problems which aren't easy to "fix".

*edited to add: Using Juliet as an analogy is erroneous, since she fell in love with a fellow teenager - not a grown man.
My point in bringing up Juliet was that the appropriateness of mating between two biologically mature individuals differs widely across the spectrum of cultures and times, and the Juliet analogy is appropriate because her parents may well have expected her to receive the approaches of an older man if it meant to them the potential of a beneficial marriage.

As we have seen in the news lately, there is a culture within our borders that believes that when a female reaches sexual maturity she is ready for marriage and a sexual relationship, and any arguments any of us may have for saying this is wrong would be based on our own cultural biases. In no other species of animal on this planet do individuals wait some arbitrary number of years after sexual maturity to bond, so even nature supports this point.

In fact, your bringing up the fact that both Romeo and Juliet were in our culture "underage" implied that you thought that was okay, or at least "more okay" than if Romeo were forty-nine. What if he were thirty-five? What if he was twenty-five? Twenty? Eighteen? Sixteen? At what point would Romeo's age have made it seem less reprehensible? And then, isn't that age that you consider proper arbitrary? If it wasn't, the age of consent wouldn't differ from state to state. In a quick online check of age of consent, I see that South Carolina considered 14 the age of consent for females but 16 the age of consent for males. How's that for cultural relevance?

In South Korea, Japan, and Spain the age of consent is thirteen (http://www.avert.org/aofconsent.htm), so had this occurred in the birthplace of aikido Clint George might have been thought of as a person who was taking advantage of his student, but he would not have been arrested (unless he was breaking prefecture laws). Had he been with his student in the Philippines it would have been legal for them to have a relationship from the time she turned 12 as long as she was not a prostitute.

Jennifer, in your post is the insinuation that the man may be a hard-core pedophile when the most atrocious allegation in the article is of "inappropriate email content" and "inappropriate touching." The article stated that she had been his student for two years, and it is obvious from the article that the inappropriate behaviors were a recent thing (the last three months). If you have some other evidence that "This isn't just a simple "he fell in love with someone who happened to be a child", please present it and clear up my misunderstanding.

Jennifer, I looked at the website at the URL you provided and it states this under Definition:

Pedophilia is defined as the fantasy or act of sexual activity with prepubescent children.

So without knowing the level of sexual maturity of the girl in question, we don't even know if Clint George fits the clinical definition of a pedophile, let alone whether he "most likely" has some deep-rooted difficult problems to fix.

But even if he does have such problems, does that mean we cast out this member of our community who prior to this incident appears to have been well respected? Do we consider his the unforgivable sin? Or do we consider his problem our problem because if we don't help him with his deep-rooted problem we lose a teacher who has been considered valuable to others.

This is what I meant even more than the pre-emptive "loving protection of all things" that can happen before-the-fact that you and Lori you have mentioned.

The life of this man, a fellow aikidoist, is for all intents and purposes changed forever for something that would not even be considered wrong in another time and place on earth. If we are the people of integrity we would like to be, where is our compassion?
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 08:54 PM   #166
CorkyQ
Dojo: Kakushi Toride Aikido
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 109
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Keith Larman wrote: View Post
I'll leave the religious aspects of your post alone as I don't see it as relevant.
Personally I see the spiritual elements as extremely relevant because compassion is a spiritual value, not to mention the fact that Osensei continually referred to aikido as a spiritual art, including the statement "This budo is both a martial art and a religious practice."

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
It makes more sense to me that the proper way to deal with this at its roots is to proactively start new "cycles of compassion"
Rob
That sounds right on the money to me, Rob!
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 08:58 PM   #167
CorkyQ
Dojo: Kakushi Toride Aikido
Location: Los Angeles
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 109
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Jennifer Yabut wrote: View Post
Keith just reminded me of another point I wanted to make:

Corky, are you familiar at all with pedophilia: http://www.psychologytoday.com/condi...edophilia.html

This isn't just a simple "he fell in love with someone who happened to be a child". If the allegations *are* true, this most likely means he has some deep-rooted problems which aren't easy to "fix".

*edited to add: Using Juliet as an analogy is erroneous, since she fell in love with a fellow teenager - not a grown man.
My point in bringing up Juliet was that the appropriateness of mating between two biologically mature individuals differs widely across the spectrum of cultures and times, and the Juliet analogy is appropriate because her parents may well have expected her to receive the approaches of an older man if it meant to them the potential of a beneficial marriage.

As we have seen in the news lately, there is a culture within our borders that believes that when a female reaches sexual maturity she is ready for marriage and a sexual relationship, and any arguments any of us may have for saying this is wrong would be based on our own cultural biases. In no other species of animal on this planet do individuals wait some arbitrary number of years after sexual maturity to bond, so even nature supports this point.

In fact, your bringing up the fact that both Romeo and Juliet were in our culture "underage" implied that you thought that was okay, or at least "more okay" than if Romeo were forty-nine. What if he were thirty-five? What if he was twenty-five? Twenty? Eighteen? Sixteen? At what point would Romeo's age have made it seem less reprehensible? And then, isn't that age that you consider proper arbitrary? If it wasn't, the age of consent wouldn't differ from state to state. In a quick online check of age of consent, I see that South Carolina considered 14 the age of consent for females but 16 the age of consent for males. How's that for cultural relevance?

In South Korea, Japan, and Spain the age of consent is thirteen (http://www.avert.org/aofconsent.htm), so had this occurred in the birthplace of aikido Clint George might have been thought of as a person who was taking advantage of his student, but he would not have been arrested (unless he was breaking prefecture laws). Had he been with his student in the Philippines it would have been legal for them to have a relationship from the time she turned 12 as long as she was not a prostitute.

Jennifer, in your post is the insinuation that the man may be a hard-core pedophile when the most atrocious allegation in the article is of "inappropriate email content" and "inappropriate touching." The article stated that she had been his student for two years, and it is obvious from the article that the inappropriate behaviors were a recent thing (the last three months). If you have some other evidence that "This isn't just a simple "he fell in love with someone who happened to be a child", please present it and clear up my misunderstanding.

Jennifer, I looked at the website at the URL you provided and it states this under Definition:

Pedophilia is defined as the fantasy or act of sexual activity with prepubescent children.

So without knowing the level of sexual maturity of the girl in question, we don't even know if Clint George fits the clinical definition of a pedophile, let alone whether he "most likely" has some deep-rooted difficult problems to fix.

But even if he does have such problems, does that mean we cast out this member of our community who prior to this incident appears to have been well respected? Do we consider his the unforgivable sin? Or do we consider his problem our problem because if we don't help him with his deep-rooted problem we lose a teacher who has been considered valuable to others.

This is what I meant even more than the pre-emptive "loving protection of all things" that can happen before-the-fact that you and Lori you have mentioned.

The life of this man, a fellow aikidoist, is for all intents and purposes changed forever for something that would not even be considered wrong in another time and place on earth. If we are the people of integrity we would like to be, where is our compassion?
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 09:52 PM   #168
Jennifer Yabut
 
Jennifer Yabut's Avatar
Dojo: Aikikai of Philadelphia
Location: Philadelphia, PA
Join Date: Dec 2006
Posts: 100
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Corky Quakenbush wrote: View Post
Personally I see the spiritual elements as extremely relevant because compassion is a spiritual value, not to mention the fact that Osensei continually referred to aikido as a spiritual art, including the statement "This budo is both a martial art and a religious practice."
It still seems like to me that you're more about blind "forgiveness" as opposed to really dealing with the problem. Showing "compassion" and "forgiveness" does *not* mean the offender ought to go scott-free without any kind of consequence.

"The ultimate aim of martial arts is not having to use them." - Miyamoto Musashi
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 11:14 PM   #169
Buck
Join Date: Feb 2008
Posts: 950
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

What Osensei said of love and say what Clint George is accused of is the same is unthinkable. It is terrible a man like Clint George admired and respected by many could have fallen. He held up Aikido, and was very important person to many. But If Clint George fell in love with a child that can't be the same as love talked about by Osensei. That isn't love by any human standard.

I don't think children in Aikido think when the topic of Osensei's ideal of love is talked about believe it is on a physical intimate level with an adult, like what Clint George is accused of.

I have compassion for all those involved. More for the child.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-23-2008, 11:23 PM   #170
rob_liberti
Dojo: Shobu Aikido of Connecticut
Location: East Haven, CT
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,402
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Disclaimer: This is in NO WAY intended to be a personal attack.

We all have a desire to guide our children to be healthy and well adjusted adults. This is intended to be a cause and effect analysis on the METHOD of achieving that outcome which was provided as an example to this thread - and relate it back to exactly what I disagree with Ellis's 30% stat regarding "cycle of abuse".

In terms of "cycle of compassion": I would suggest a method whereby one redirects the butt-grabbing curiosity as opposed to punishing the impulse. Once a boy is having sexual feelings (far later than 5 years old - like puberty), there is a chance of actually having a productive discussion about respecting women. Teaching respect in general requires conveying to him respect of his needs and feelings.

AGAIN - This is not intended to be an attack on one's parenting. It is intended to offer perspective on what is "under the radar" and HOW IT GETS THERE given the typical parenting paradigm this example reflects.

So, in terms of "cycle of abuse below the typical radar" - I'm also an engineer. I think in terms of basic logical flow. So this is how I lay it out in my mind:

1) To a 5 year old, grabbing butts or touching boobs or hitting for that matter is just normal primate behavior. Please by all means go watch some other primates if you do not agree with this! They are trying to figure out where they fit in physically with their tribe. They are just trying stuff out.

2) "Grabbing butts" CANNOT POSSIBLY BE sexual to a 5 year old in any way. A 5 year old CANNOT be sexually sophisticated enough to think otherwise - regardless of how many punishments he gets.

(disclaimer: AGAIN - The following point is NOT intended as a personal attack, it is just a logical point about what is level appropriate and how that kind of thinking in general seems to fail at every level)
3) It is unfortunately absurd to think a 5 year old CAN POSSIBLY associate losing a Wii with respecting women. (Please - really - I do not mean to offend here.) Is there even any evidence that this works well with adults? For instance, how many prisoners are rehabilitated?

4) Punishing a child's actions gives those actions POWER - which I believe is what he is curious about and experimenting with in the first place - how much power he has.

5) By putting a sexual context around it (for example "invading a woman's personal space is wrong"), it gives them the false idea that this normal childhood impulse to explore human bodies (which goes against our repressed society) makes them BAD PEOPLE as opposed to thinking "oh I should change my behavior" - which is obviously the desired message.

This paradigm tends to favor the false dichotomy of either: a) you smack the kids spirit down OR: b) just let the kid do anything they want.
There is also option: c) You can honor the impulse the child has and help them express it in acceptable ways.

I am concerned about how any child is going to grow up having had the most powerful women in his life exert painful control over him (examples: "amazing the amount of angst", "consequences which to him are rather severe") because he was curious about women's bodies. I sincerely worry about what such a child's opinion of women WILL BE when he IS sexually sophisticated, after having his normal impulses basically crushed by his mother - the most powerful woman in his life - and told that he is wrong and bad.

Have you ever been with a creepy guy and it just didn't feel right? How do you think he got that way such that his perversion was under the radar and came out as a creepy feeling with the women he was with? This goes to the next point:

6) A mother will NEVER KNOW the RESULTS of such a method (punishing and sexualizing primate impulses) in her attempt to raise a good kid. It only hits the radar if there are legal problems. Short of that, a mom will never get a call from her 19 year old son to explain to her that he has gotten really perverted and creepy with women. I believe he will have mastered how to hide it to avoid punishment by then - given the years of practice provided while being raised.

It does not make logical sense to me to think creepy people just happen randomly like lightening striking - or like why I might randomly like vanilla ice cream. It is much more likely that it is a cumulative effect of these examples of under the radar abuses. Maybe I'm wrong, but my opinion is that you better think long and hard about it because you are never going to get any feedback until it makes the radar with some legal action. To me, I simply suggest erring on the side of caution and reading Alice Miller books.

To that end, this is relevant to aikido in terms of teachers and students. How do you raise good students to have better judgment? Same as parenting. You have to ask BOTH questions:
1) what do I want this person to do?
2) WHY do I want them to do it?

Most people are only asking the first question, and THAT is pretty much the REASON for aikido in the first place.

Thanks,
Rob

Last edited by rob_liberti : 04-23-2008 at 11:31 PM.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2008, 01:01 AM   #171
rob_liberti
Dojo: Shobu Aikido of Connecticut
Location: East Haven, CT
Join Date: Jul 2004
Posts: 1,402
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
You have to ask BOTH questions:
1) what do I want this person to do?
2) WHY do I want them to do it?
I need to clarify that second question much more. I should have wrote:

2) What do you want THEIR reason for doing it to be?

Rob
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2008, 01:20 AM   #172
clwk
Join Date: Sep 2005
Posts: 138
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Rob Liberti wrote: View Post
I am concerned about how any child is going to grow up having had the most powerful women in his life exert painful control over him (examples: "amazing the amount of angst", "consequences which to him are rather severe") because he was curious about women's bodies. I sincerely worry about what such a child's opinion of women WILL BE when he IS sexually sophisticated, after having his normal impulses basically crushed by his mother - the most powerful woman in his life - and told that he is wrong and bad.
Mother, do you think they'll drop the bomb?
Mother, do you think they'll like this song?
Mother, do you think they'll try to break my balls?
Ooooowaa Mother, should I build a wall?
Mother, should I run for President?
Mother, should I trust the government?
Mother, will they put me in the firing line?
Ooooowaa Is it just a waste of time?
Hush, my baby. Baby, don't you cry.
Momma's gonna make all of your nightmares come true.
Momma's gonna put all of her fears into you.
Momma's gonna keep you right here under her wing.
She won't let you fly, but she might let you sing.
Momma's gonna keep Baby cozy and warm.
Oooo Babe.
Oooo Babe.
Ooo Babe, of course Momma's gonna help build a wall.
Mother, do you think she's good enough,
For me?
Mother, do you think she's dangerous,
To me?
Mother will she tear your little boy apart?
Ooooowaa Mother, will she break my heart?
Hush, my baby. Baby, don't you cry.
Momma's gonna check out all your girlfriends for you.
Momma won't let anyone dirty get through.
Momma's gonna wait up until you get in.
Momma will always find out where you've been.
Momma's gonna keep Baby healthy and clean.
Oooo Babe.
Oooo Babe.
Ooo Babe, you'll always be Baby to me.
Mother, did it need to be so high?

-- Pink Floyd, 'Mother': The Wall.
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2008, 02:01 AM   #173
Josh Reyer
 
Josh Reyer's Avatar
Location: Aichi-ken, Nagoya-shi
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 644
Japan
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Rob, that's really a well-thought out post, which could lead to an extremely interesting discussion. I do think, however, that it should have been posted in its own thread in the "Open Discussions" forum. This thread has had difficulty enough staying near topic as it is...

Quote:
Jennifer Yabut wrote:
Quote:
Corky Quakenbush wrote:
This is not a predatory monster, he is man whose crime it was to fall in love with a child who fell in love with him. A child who was the same age as Shakespeare's Juliet when her parents were admonishing her to find a husband so that she could start raising her family.

Like everyone else, I can think of a million reasons to call what this man may have done wrong, and I can say how I would never have fallen prey to the same temptations to which he fell prey, but I will never be able to say that I will not fall prey to some temptation that will cause harm to myself or someone else.
Corky, are you familiar at all with pedophilia: http://www.psychologytoday.com/condi...edophilia.html

This isn't just a simple "he fell in love with someone who happened to be a child". If the allegations *are* true, this most likely means he has some deep-rooted problems which aren't easy to "fix".

*edited to add: Using Juliet as an analogy is erroneous, since she fell in love with a fellow teenager - not a grown man.
Man, I really don't know if I want to wade into this, but in the interest of clear, coherent discussion...

If you'll look at the above quote of Corky's, you'll note that at no point does he mention Romeo or Juliet's relationship with him. He brings her up in the context of what her parents desired, and thus, what was once acceptable in society. This is, IMO, a rather important distinction because (from the link you provided):
Quote:
Pedophilia is defined as the fantasy or act of sexual activity with prepubescent children.
It mentions 13 years as an upper boundary, but this is merely an arbitrary marker for convenience, like 18 as the age of majority, or 21 as the drinking age. I teach at an elementary school, and there are 12 year olds who are clearly pre-pubescent, and there are 12 year olds who have very adult bodies. This is even more true of 13. It's not for nothing that sexual education often starts in the 5th grade, when children are 10-11 years old. Corky's point, I believe, is that in times past a physically mature 13 year old girl was married off and expected to bear children, and Juliet is such an example. And the fact is, we have no idea how physically mature this girl is. Nor, for that matter, how mentally mature. The fact that this relationship seems to have played itself out through email is, IMO, a salient fact.

None of which is to say a 49 year old man engaging in any kind of romantic relationship (let alone a physical relationship) with a 13 year old is at all permissible, or condonable. Let me categorically state that, because in these conversations it can get lost in the noise: I do not believe that the relationship alleged here, assuming everything in the article is true, is healthy, acceptable, justifiable, without grave psychological and emotional consequences, or should be without heavy punishment. It goes against important principles our society holds to today.

However, if the girl was physically mature and sexually aware, it was not pedophilia. Unethical, immoral, illegal, yes, all that and more. But not the same psychopathy as sexually desiring a 9-year old. It is my impression that this is one of the arguments Corky is making: that Clint George may not be a defective human beyond repair, but may be a redeemable one who has committed a grave mistake.

I can see some sense in that, and I might even agree with it, if we had all the information Clint George and the girl had. (Or, at the least, if we knew what the girl looked like -- if she's a clearly pre-pubescent 13 year old, then Clint George might have to be cut off from society.)

However, Corky makes another argument:
Quote:
We are aikidoists, and if we are to live up to Osensei's arguably most quoted description of aikido, we need to understand what the words "loving protection of all things" means. Osensei did not call his art "the loving protection of all things good" or "the loving protection of all things except murderers, rapists and thieves." He called it "the loving protection of all things."
And this one I can't quite agree with. It essentially is, "What Would Ueshiba Do?", and I don't buy that when it's "What Would Jesus Do?", and I'm much more amenable to the idea of Jesus' divine infallibility than Ueshiba's. Ueshiba, because of his own particular ideology, was able to condone a number of things that I am not willing to. And no one needs to. Few, if any, aikido practitioners today follow Ueshiba's actual ideology and spirituality, not even the current Doshu.

Josh Reyer

The lyf so short, the crafte so longe to lerne,
Th'assay so harde, so sharpe the conquerynge...
- Chaucer
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2008, 07:20 AM   #174
lbb
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 3,059
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Quote:
Joshua Reyer wrote: View Post
However, Corky makes another argument: And this one I can't quite agree with. It essentially is, "What Would Ueshiba Do?", and I don't buy that when it's "What Would Jesus Do?", and I'm much more amenable to the idea of Jesus' divine infallibility than Ueshiba's. Ueshiba, because of his own particular ideology, was able to condone a number of things that I am not willing to. And no one needs to. Few, if any, aikido practitioners today follow Ueshiba's actual ideology and spirituality, not even the current Doshu.
Thank God someone finally said it. WWUD, pass the kool-ade...
  Reply With Quote
Old 04-24-2008, 08:08 AM   #175
dragonteeth
Dojo: Elkton Ki-Aikido
Location: Virginia
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 108
United_States
Offline
Re: Very Disturbing news about Clint George

Well, Rob, I guess you missed the very first line of my post, which said "please let me offer an analogy..."

I was not implying that my son's behavior would lead to being a sexual predator. Whether his intent is sexualized at his age (or not) is irrelevant. It is still socially unacceptable behavior, stemming in large part (according to the professionals in his life) from having a mild case of reactive attachment disorder resulting from his adoption at the relatively late age of three along with the death of his adoptive father eight months later.

Please allow me to restate my point in clearer terms for you.

As I love my child unconditionally, so we as the aikido community loves (in varying degrees) the two practitioners who are currently accused of wrongdoing.

As I and society mildly dislike what my child does that is mildly inappropriate, so the aikido community and society severely dislike what these two have done that is severely inappropriate.

As I as a parent try to remove my child from any temptation to perpetuate his misbehavior until he learns complete self control in that area, so the aikido community and society will remove these individuals from situations where they are at risk of repeating their crimes. Part of the aikido community here has expressed a desire to keep all individuals from situations where anyone is at risk of committing these crimes in the first place, which is reflected in the recent line of discussion in this thread.

As I as a parent teach and correct my child out of love and compassion, and in an effort to save him from future pain and humiliation, so the aikido community seeks to teach and correct all of the individuals within itself to save them from future pain and humiliation out of love and compassion.

To accuse those who have posted here of not being compassionate with such vitriol lacks the very compassion which you espouse, IMHO. If they choose to focus on prevention and identification of possible future perpetrators in an effort to keep the practice of our beloved art safe for all and clean of such impurities, then they have my admiration for those efforts. To me, and hopefully to you, this shows their compassion for all aikido practitioners, including those who may unfortunately find themselves in this situation in the future.

I think at this point I will start a new thread on preventing preadators under the teaching file so that we can distance that conversation from this one, which seems to be degenerating rapidly.
  Reply With Quote

Please visit our sponsor:

AikiWeb Sponsored Links - Place your Aikido link here for only $10!



Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

vB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
George Ledyard Sensei in San Antonio Oct. 13-15, 2006 AikiWeb System AikiWeb System 1 09-24-2006 11:17 PM
Seminar with Sensei Clint George Brad Pruitt Seminars 2 08-05-2006 03:26 PM
AikiWeb Front Page News AikiWeb System AikiWeb System 0 04-26-2006 12:12 PM
New Sword DVD Set from George Ledyard AikiWeb System AikiWeb System 0 08-24-2005 05:45 PM
Review: George Ledyard Seminar at Shindai AikiWeb System AikiWeb System 0 06-22-2005 06:17 PM


All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:55 AM.



vBulletin Copyright © 2000-2016 Jelsoft Enterprises Limited
----------
Copyright 1997-2016 AikiWeb and its Authors, All Rights Reserved.
----------
For questions and comments about this website:
Send E-mail
plainlaid-picaresque outchasing-protistan explicantia-altarage seaford-stellionate