I raised four sons. Not only did I (like every parent) pass along to them my “issues,” aesthetic taste, and love for Mexican food. They also inherited something I did not have the privilege of receiving as a child — fighting skills. Through dragging them weekly to my Jujitsu class, I cultivated within them a love for martial arts and fighting skills, which they retain to this day.
I advised my young sons that coming with Dad to train in fighting was voluntary. I explained that if they were my daughters, the trip to the “Dojo” (Japanese for, “Training Hall”) would not have been voluntary. It would have been mandatory family education. This is because I would have feared for their safety far more if they had been my daughters, rather than my sons. This was not some hangover of patriarchy on my part, it was an attitude forced upon me by the reality of Gender Based Violence (G.B.V.)
My son’s all chose to come and train with me. They all still love martial arts and have a powerful foundation in self-defense. They are also all strong feminist (like Dad) and advocates for women’s rights and against G.B.V. Had they been born daughter’s, I would have felt a necessity to train them to defend themselves with the skills of dispensing violence, or “counter-violence.” This is the not-so-wonderful world in which we live.
Victims are Victims Not Merely of Individual Men — They Are Victims of a Culture of Rape
Victims of sexual violence and relationship violence are never to be blamed. Our judgmental society always turns it scorn upon the victims of sexual and relationship violence. Women are asked, “Why did you not fight back?” There are numerous times when fighting back would be deadly and idiotic.
Tearing an uncle’s eyes out, hitting the jugular of your babysitter, or taking the knife from your husband’s hand in inserting it into his gut would at the very least get women jailed. Social pressure and the shame of revelation is more often the weapon abuser’s and rapist wield. 80% of the time this kind of violence comes from someone the victim knows.
All this being true, there is something energetically repelling to abuser about a person (regardless of gender) who knows how to fight for their life. It is an instinctual thing. They can sense it if they push you. It is more than just knowing a “martial art.” It is a perspective. It is a mindset that if anyone seeks to violate your right to live, you will return the favor immediately — Quick as a light switch.
Forget #Metoo, We Need #OhHellNo
I dream of a world where there will never be a need for a #MeToo campaign. A world where first of all, “rape culture” does not exist. A world where boys are not being trained and raised into our psychotic social paradigm of aggressive prototypes of hyper-masculinity, which in reality is not masculinity. It is hyper-scared boy-ism. It is hyper-sociopath and hyper-self-destruct mode for men trapped in that lie, and the society that feeds it. We breed each male school shooter in this country. We do so on purpose — so we can retain the lie of male “superiority.”
I also dream of a world filled with women-warriors. My mother was a warrior, literally, in that she served in the armed forces during war time. She also tore the eyeball out of a Marine that tried to rape her as a young woman. I saw her beat a man who tried to hurt her. She was not some odd anomaly. The tradition of women warriors lie in the recesses of history and mythology of virtually every culture. Every culture was at one time, indigenous and feminine-honoring, for all life comes from women. The ancients knew this.
I dream of a world that is within our grasp. One where women are viewed as being equal and worthy of all respect. I dream of a world where, if one fool stepped out of line and tried to violate a girl or woman in any way, he would be stopped dead in his tracks. I dream of a world that encourages women to access their ferocity when it is necessary. I dream of a world where boys are encouraged to cultivate their nurturing nature, as well as their warrior nature. I dream of world of no more “Metoo,” but rather a world of “#OhHellNo.”
When men and women, fathers and mothers, sons and daughters — eradicate any tolerance for the perpetuation of G.B.V. and our rape culture, then we may have a chance to live in peace. Until that day I will continue to fight against the misogyny that raises some boys to be rapist and domestic violence perpetrators.
I will continue to train women in how to do flip the story. I will continue to train women in how to utilize a tool too often used against them to their advantage — a Jujitsu flip of reality. I will train women in how to use violence against anyone that presumes to exert power and control over their right to live violence-free. My hope is that other father’s and mother’s will also raise their daughters to fight.
Previously published on FrankBlaney.com
Photo provided by the author.