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Old 10-25-2002, 12:45 PM   #1
Sven Groot
 
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Dojo: Shi Zen Ryu, Leiden
Location: Leiden, the Netherlands
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Senseless Violence

Last Tuesday (22-10-2002), in Venlo, the Netherlands, the 22-year-old René Steegmans told two 18-year-old men, who (purposely) nearly hit a senior with their scooters, to show some more respect for elders.
In response, the two repeatedly hit Steegmans to the head, and shortly after he was declared clinically dead. The next morning Steegmans died of his injuries in the hospital.
The two were apprehanded by the police, and one of them has already confessed. I hope they go behind bars for a long time.

It's things like this that make me truely ashamed to be human.

Senseless Violence (Zinloos Geweld) is the name of the government campaign that tries to prevent such incidents. I think it's a stupid name, because it implies there's such a thing as sensible violence.
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Old 10-25-2002, 01:25 PM   #2
SeiserL
 
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Re: Senseless Violence

Quote:
Sven Groot wrote:
It's things like this that make me truely ashamed to be human.

Senseless Violence (Zinloos Geweld) is the name of the government campaign that tries to prevent such incidents. I think it's a stupid name, because it implies there's such a thing as sensible violence.
Actually, statistically, the majority of the human race is nonviolent. So don't be to identified or ashamed of yourself for the exceptions, unless you are one.

And, as very un-Aikido like of me and completely politically incorrect, the violence I may wish on people that commit such crimes may be what I would call snesible violence. Karma: what goes around comes around, what you sow you shall reap, and logical consequences.

IMHO, sometimes you just have to put the rabid dogs down.

Until again,

Lynn

Lynn Seiser PhD
Yondan Aikido & FMA/JKD
We do not rise to the level of our expectations, but fall to the level of our training. Train well. KWATZ!
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Old 10-25-2002, 01:44 PM   #3
Brian H
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Sven, I am troubled by your not making any distinction between violence to attack others and violence in defense of self/others.

It is a complicated world we live in.

Sometimes just taking a stand against something is enough to stop it.

Sometimes you will be attacked because you did.

When this happens as a physical action that is violence. To defend oneself or others stops the aggressive action and ultimately protects all.

Evil triumphs when good men do nothing
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Old 10-25-2002, 02:16 PM   #4
Sven Groot
 
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Perhaps I have indeed been too hasty with that comment.

Violence in order to stop violence can indeed be the only possible course of action, and if the outcome is good (the violence stops, nobody dies) it could be regarded as 'sensible'.

The trouble is the dosage. It is very hard to determine what amount of violence will ultimately lead to an end of the violence, and what amount will lead to escalation (a certain US president seems especially incapable of making these kinds of decisions).

Ultimately, the world would be a better place if there was no violence to respond to with violence in the first place, so the non-existence of sensible violence may just be wishful thinking on my part.

As for not having to be ashamed of the exceptions unless I am one, perhaps you are closer to the truth than I realised when writing the original post.

In the past, I used to have incredible anger attacks, triggered by even the slightest provocation. During these attacks, I was not in control of myself. I was still aware of what I was doing, and very much aware that I shouldn't, but my body would not listen to my brain (the actual sensation of this 'lack of control' is very hard to describe, this is only an approximate).

While I was in this state, I would attack anyone and everyone that got near me. Regardless of whether they were the ones that provoked me. Regardless of whether they were my friends. I'd attack anyone, even teachers. Luckily, nobody ever got seriously hurt.

I guess my shame for people like above can very well come from shame for my own violent past.

I have long now conquered my violent side. First by suppressing it (along with every other emotion), but gradually over the years I have found other ways to express emotion.

I also think that this dark chapter is a very core reason for my desire to study Aikido. While I have removed my dark side's claim over me, I somehow feel it is not completely gone. I feel (hope) Aikido may be the next step in finding harmony between the two sides.

Phew! I guess this is what they call topic drift.
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Old 10-25-2002, 11:31 PM   #5
opherdonchin
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I'm not so sure it's topic drift. I've noticed a lot in my life that the things that trouble me most often are a path through which I can see more clearly inside myself. Brian talked about one of the many complicated ways that we can respond to the violence in the world and I feel like you have just shown another one that may ultimately be equally productive.

Yours in Aiki
Opher
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Old 10-26-2002, 03:34 AM   #6
Neil Mick
Dojo: Aikido of Santa Cruz
Location: Santa Cruz, CA
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Re: Senseless Violence

Quote:
Sven Groot wrote:
Last Tuesday (22-10-2002), in Venlo, the Netherlands, the 22-year-old René Steegmans told two 18-year-old men, who (purposely) nearly hit a senior with their scooters, to show some more respect for elders.

The two were apprehanded by the police, and one of them has already confessed. I hope they go behind bars for a long time.

I think it's a stupid name, because it implies there's such a thing as sensible violence.
I agree with just about everything, everyone said, but something else to consider:

The perps were 18 years old; technically adults, but still on the cusp of adolescence.

While they should be punished (and Aikido can include violence, to avoid greater violence, I think), perhaps their emotional state ought to be considered, as well.

How adolescents express their rebellion is partly determined by the society. Is this a phenomenon common amongst teens in the Netherlands?
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Old 10-26-2002, 10:26 AM   #7
Jonathan Lewis
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Sven, you have my respect and admiration for putting your feet on your own correct path.
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Old 11-01-2002, 02:07 AM   #8
Abasan
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'Technicality' is a dangerous term that could lead to a guilty person being let loose and an innocent incarcerated.

18 years old is old enough to understand the difference between right and wrong, even if its not enough to fully understand the consequences of their actions. Heck 12 years old is already old enough I would think.

Let them go, and you set a precedent for the future, where young assailants get away with crime.

Draw strength from stillness. Learn to act without acting. And never underestimate a samurai cat.
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