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View Poll Results: Can you kill a human being if needed?

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Thread: Can you Kill?

  1. #61
    Mike McLaren Guest

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    Better to be judged by 12 than carried by six. If the situation went past the point where it could be defused and the attacker could not be subdued, if it were myself or him, then yes I could kill.

    Mike McLaren

  2. #62
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    I think perhaps that for the koryu, particularly those that predate the Tokugawa shogunate, one should be prepared to kill whether one ever will need to or not. That is part of their heritage. Not being a koryu practitioner (though I wish I was, sure) I can't say this for certain, but it makes sense to me.

    For the budo, certainly that's one important thing that it should teach. Life is more important than winning. If I had to kill to save my own life, I would. If instead I could retain my life and only disable or maim my opponent, then I'd much rather do that instead.
    James A. Crippen

  3. #63
    Jerry Johnson Guest

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    I find this (recycled) question to be a bit of an awkward fancy, and uncomfortable to say the least. And I
    have never killed another human being, unintentional or intentionally yet. But the following is my opinion.

    I find killing someone ( based on those who have, i.e. soldiers, those who are in car accidents, teenaged gang members, and those who are involved in hunting accidents). It is a serious issue that leaves deep psychological impressions for a life-time no matter how macho you think you are initially. From my experience, it changes people and it usually doesn't make a normal person jump for joy when it happens. Much less, anyone with a conscious. In most cases it devastates that person in some way.

    We often romanticize killing way too much i.e. in movies etc. And in my opinion this is a pathetic perspective at a serious and life changing subject. In my opinion, it trivializes the subject and the experience. In today’s modern world, as a whole, we have left the samurai culture behind. We don't start training individuals as a society to kill at the age of 2. The world has moved away from that type of culture where a live sword in placed in kids' hands at 2, where the grooming begins. Which tells you something about what killing is in itself. It takes a lot of head twisting and head messing to get most people to kill regularly to say the least. And you got to start them young, right?

    I think it is pretty clear many people, if faced in a life or death situation and not overwhelmed with fear when caught in a self-defense position, or being attacked by foreign invaders (if equipped with a fire arm) could, yes, pull the trigger. But, I would bet, it would be out of shear fear or anger. Also many people that are killed intentionally in a “peaceful” society I would bet on the following reasons, 1. Liquid courage, i.e. drugs and/or alcohol . 2.Emotional distress ( anger, fear, hatred) 3. Age and sex. And lastly, and the combination of the previous above.

    I think most people can kill as noted above. But the real issue is when the smoke clears. Life isn't a movie.
    Last edited by Jerry Johnson; 15th December 2001 at 16:51.

  4. #64
    Jerry Johnson Guest

    Default food for thought

    Now, I would like to address the perspective of "you don't have to kill in a life threating situation. "

    Not to trivialize things but of course a solider in war does, and is the exceptions here, and I don't think the topic thread alluded to this situation.

    What many of us call Martial arts is a hobby. A hobby we do for many reasons. It fulfills something with in us that may be fancy or fanfare, but clearly we are not trained professional soldiers or killers each time we walk out of the dojo.

    It can be argued a martial artist today in the western may be a superman type of oxymoron. That is martial arts for most of us Clark Kents marital arts feeds our insecurities and or alter ego. Sure we change after time and learn skills and less of being Clark Kents when we first joined, but we still, for many of us, are feeling like more confident, rather then being able to kill. It also can be said for some I must agree, it is an outlet or vehicle for emotional turmoil i.e. the extreme is the Mike Tyson syndrome. Or a stress release from the daily grind. But, lets face it, 99.9 of us who go to the dojo are not there to kill or prepared to kill. Despite what we learn. We are there to learn an art, to fulfill a fancy, to help us in some way. Overall, to gives us assurance in some way or another about who we are. This isn't a bad thing. I think it is a healthy normal human thing. Therefore, I must argue dojo’s don’t teach you to “really” kill in the overall scope. Because if this was really true, that all involved intentions at a dojo are to kill, we wouldn't spend big $ over the many years of training and continue the personal sacrifice. We would be else where i.e. in the French Foreign Legion or other military group for example. Oh hell, for that matter in organized crime as a hit man. I don’t see any reason then, that is if your in such a group thinking your there to learn to kill.

    I have a story that will support the idea that you don't have to kill to protect yourself. But yet the outcome conflict with that idea and present a new view.

    A couple which are good friends of mine are highly paid professionals and make more money each in one year then I do in a life time. The couple spent most of their lives in school. Real book worms with high IQs people who collapse of exhaustion in a sprint up the stairs. People who I doubt ever got more then a paper cut. People who bruise when playing the children's game Rock, Scissors, and Paper. People who had never experience the physical active world, much less any violence. Until they moved in to their second house.

    Long story, short. The couple experienced a burglary, where they where held at gun point in their home. The intruder surprised them as posing as a new salesmen from a company the couple was doing business with. The intruder gagged and tied with plastic bags ties on their heads. The couple was severely beaten, suffering skull fractures, broken bones, internal bleeding, etc. from being pistol whipped for hours. Then they were told [she]would be rapped and then both shot upon the intruders return from the upstairs bedroom. A this point [he] managed to free himself from the binding because of a broken bone. He freed his wife who was in and out of conscious due to blood loss. She was able to call 911. Then my friend, went up stairs and “sucker punched” the intruder from behind twice with the same arm. The intruder staggered, lost his balance dropping the gun to catch his balance from the blows. My friend picked up the gun off the floor and hit the intruder again in the face. The intruder ran down the stairs with my friend chasing him. The intruder then went throw a door pane window as my friend tackled the intruder at the bottom of the stairs. The intruder managed to get through the glass door pane and out on the front lawn. My friend followed. He also went through the broken glass door pane also receiving major gashes from the broken glass in the process. He confronted the intruder again on the lawn while the intruder was catching his breath. My friend hit him again with a closed fist to the nose braking the intruders nose. The intruder dropped to the ground in pain pleading for his life. My friend had left the gun behind. The intruder was then arrested by police shortly after that. The intruder was a harden criminal who previously served time for murder and burglary. He is serving a life sentence.

    Not once did my friend point the gun to shoot the intruder. Nor did at any time intend to kill him despite the opportunity and situation. All that went through his untrained mind was to get the gun and get the guy out. Now because of this situation he owns a shot gun and rehearses with his wife the what to do's and the plan on the "what ifs" on a monthly basis. That was years ago. Now, my friend says his wife lives with fear, and he has resolved it by saying he says he looks at death differently. Now it is a choice if faced in a similar situation again. That ‘s he may not fight if it happened again. Something he would have never considered before he says.

  5. #65
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    Jerry, Jerry, Jerry . I thought we went through all this before. Terribly sorry about your friends. But read some of the earlier posts by Tony and Myself.

    PS. Your writing is a little hard to follow, try not to write as things come to you and think it out first.

    Kosta Moutzouris

  6. #66
    Jerry Johnson Guest

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    Dear Sir,
    For your convenience:
    Tabla La Rasa.
    Your dictated by your environment.
    Behavior is learned.
    Don't Assume.
    Action speaks louder then words.
    Experience is your best teacher.
    Those who say they do, usually don't.
    An option not considered is one's own death in the face of violence. Point being a humble notion of surrender rather violence. See. Gandhi.


    And yes, I didn't read the whole thread. And I apologize if you failed to notice the of ideas and their relationship presented. I tend not to write in binary code as this is what I apologize for. I also will not hit all the points I made. Just the one below.

    Here is an overview of the triangulation of action I was getting at in my posts. The first leg are those who choose violence by saying they will kill. This is usually ego based. The second leg are those who say they would not kill, but rather find an alternatives to killing i.e. injury. Which in it's self is ego based and connected to the intent of killing. To illustrate this idea, Ellis Amdur pointed out in a earlier thread concerning Aikido, via a quote and I paraphrase, Aikido is really about violence, and not peace. Which illustrates a mind set that if you can injure, you have the mind set to kill. In my view, it is the same action but differentiated by the degree of action. The third leg, is those who surrender to violence, don't kill or injure, and don't fear death. Which my story of my friends was a tangible model of this triangulation concept. In illustration, the husband didn't kill but injured, he didn't know how. The intruder's intent was to kill which he didn't succeed (which relates to the topic thread, he intended to kill but wasn't able). The wife who was not killed is living in constant fear and emotional turmoil, this has stopped her life. For him, He is caught in a complex web of emotions and questioning his self. Therefore, he rationalizes death as a humble option. Bottom line is you have to live with yourself and it could be very difficult regardless if you injure or kill. All three people live on the triangle I described. There is the intruder, the wife and the husband which all are represented. Not to mention the memories both will live with the rest of their lives.

    It has been studied and proven there is an emotional price to pay to kill or injure. Though in other cases doing injury to others doesn't carry as high a price as killing. For those who are in a killing culture i.e. my example of organized crime in my previous post then those who are not in a killing culture as mentioned in my previous post. What ever culture your in you can be haunted by guilt, depression, etc at some level and thus changing your life i.e. being more of killer or seeking out religion as in a previous thread in Budo no Kokoro here in Ebudo. These are facts which many people don't think about before opening their mouths and boasting they can kill. Or other, who are full of self-importance, like yourself, who profess to knowing it all, and there is not need to discuss it all has been already discussed. Either way there is a responsibility, which was well point out by another poster on this thread. Which I found very well thought out and intelligent.

    To take a closer look at injuring instead of killing. If you don't kill you may wish you did. You may wonder if your attacker will seek see revenge etc. and thus you live in fear of when the next attack will be? Or that the next time you will be killed as your aggressor may conquer you with the greater intent to kill. In this case you may have to kill. Knowing clearly, the trauma one goes through after killing some one. For example, the trauma that cops go through after using deadly force. This should be a good enough example of what happens when a person kills another. If you injury you may suffer from emotional turmoil that is far beyond one's own coping abilities. I wouldn't say injury someone is a free-be. But it is dictated to injure rather then kill in many societies.

    Now, let's look at death as related to the topic post, are you ready to die? This is something that is rarely discussed. Hence not a popular at the dojo as could you kill. For many it is a social taboo and an ego thing to surrender to the circumstance and die. I find it a more humbling concept and harder to do. For my friend death is now an option if he is in such a situation. To surrender. This idea my be odd to you. But the point is how many people consider death. We are imbedded with the notion to kill first for many. It seems to be a macho thing. All powerful to kill. To take a life is ultimate winning. But nothing is said about the consequences emotional of such an act. There is not talk about the responsibility of such a deed. American like other countries are numb to killing. So many people have fantasies about being a hero and killing. Yet, no one considers someone a hero for not killing, much less dyeing instead. I figure this to be so, because, we despite our religious culture and beliefs, feel that death in the worst thing, i.e. "Better to be judged by 12 than carried by six."

    Most people missed the point in Star Wars when Obiwon was struck down by Darth. No one cheered in the audience. The hero was finished, it shock us - But any way, the audience wasn't thinking the hero had won and defeated evil in surrendering which was an unselfish act. Which wasn't that the point in the movie anyway that through death you are stronger. I ask you to reference Joseph Campbell on the subject of myths and heroes to get a better understanding of what I am saying.

    My final point, is it is easy to say you can kill. It may be so if all you had to do is pull a trigger. But realistically I think most dojo's play into the fancy of being able to kill and or teaching to kill. It is misleading and limited in scope. And that is more dangerous and irresponsible in my opinion. I am not saying it is or isn't easy to kill. That is up to each individual to decide if they could or couldn't. If people where serious on killing, they wouldn't join a dojo. They would buy a gun and they do. But rarely do I hear of a person using martial arts technique to kill another. Sure it happens like in bar fights, but even then I doubt it is always intentional. IMHO, mostly martial art skills cause injuries more often then death. Point is most martial artists are not killers unlike the samurai from which they take. The samurai where a people who killed and it was part of the culture. Therefore, such a question as the topic question would never arise. But, is a recycled fancy though out so many dojo's I have visited.

    The dojo's of today are not of those of yesteryear of the samurai. The dojo's of today are hobby dojo's where people can get away or release tension, or fill egos and fancies, or to dip into a different culture. But clearly, todays dojos are teaching people to kill. If today's dojos where teaching to kill the dojo and webpages etc, would be a whole different beast. I agree,
    there is a responsibility and a price to killing and injuring someone vs. just talking about it. It is more pleasing to the ego to scream " I can kill" then it is to whisper in humility, "I can die."

    Now Sir, go back and re-read the beginning of this post and my other posts again. It should make more sense the second time with this long winded spoon feeding.



    Jerry
    Jerry
    Jerry

  7. #67
    Rosi Guest

    Red face use and abuse of logic

    Tony...

    I'd agree entirely with the person who said that this is not really a logical question. Taking the position that one should never kill is not a logical point but an ethical one.

    However...

    Since misuse of mathematics is one of my pet hates, if we're going to insist on using logic, lets at least do it properly. As far as i can see, the discussion is not about whether killing someone is ever necessary. The statements you were initially objecting to were largely of the logical form:

    IF I was in a situation where killing an aggressor was necessary to protect someone important to me, THEN I would be prepared to do so.

    This does not logically imply that there exists such a situation, any more than the statement "IF it is raining THEN I will take the bus to work" implies that it is raining. There is no "bifurcation fallacy". While you may choose also to debate the logical statement "There exists at least one situation where killing an aggressor is necessary to protect someone important to me", be aware that this is another question entirely.

    It would perhaps be wise to avoid accusing other people of making logical errors when you are on somewhat shaky ground yourself.

    Incidentally - were you seriously suggesting that it might be a good idea to shoot to wound a person with a loaded gun at someone's head?!

    R. Sexton
    Last edited by Rosi; 17th December 2001 at 15:14.

  8. #68
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    Thank you Rosi. Your post was well written, logical and enlightening.

    As for your post Jerry, well I guess If you can't beat'em with brains, Baffle'em with BS.

  9. #69
    Rosi Guest

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    There's the logical fallacy again; gouging out the eyes is not the only way to stop an agressor. A simple poke will do as well; you don't have to leave someone blinded to protect yourself.


    Interestingly, i remember one incident in a grading where i had my fingers buried past the first knuckle in the eye sockets of someone who was strangling me, and the guy was still refusing to let go because he believed - quite rightly under the circumstances - that i wasn't prepared to actually gouge his eyes out.



    R. Sexton

  10. #70
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    The ammount of semantics and conjecture on this thread, are note worthy, to say the least.

    At the risk of sounding redundant, I still maintain, that all the rationalization and mathematics / wishfull thinking in the world, is absolutly worthless, when it comes down to the one moment, when one is faced with such a decision, in which one has NO time to think, other than subconciously.

    The question, if answered by anyone who has not already had the misfortune to test their weapons, should be:

    I think so / I dont think so

    I hope so / I hope not

    Maybe / maybe not

    perhaps / perhaps not

    probably / probably not

    If you have, than you know.

    Everything else, is yet, and hopfully never, to be varified.

    I personally have seen people freeze in the face of action, and others get caught up in the moment, and go with it.

    You never know...................................................until.
    Steven L. Malanoski

  11. #71
    Jerry Johnson Guest

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    Originally posted by spartanmachine
    Thank you Rosi. Your post was well written, logical and enlightening.

    As for your post Jerry, well I guess If you can't beat'em with brains, Baffle'em with BS.
    Your damn right...Spartie...it's a mindful when reality kicks you in the ass! That is, when something doesn't fit your little boxed world you throw it out. I see where your comming from.



    I for one know that like all human's we are capable of killing. But, until I am faced with that situation, what ever that situation may be or dictates, I will simply not know and will not pretend to know until it happens. It is a grave responsibly to bare when taking another person's life, able or not. I think therefore, any affirmations or spectulations of being able to do so, should not be spoken about lightly, or off the cuff.
    Last edited by Jerry Johnson; 17th December 2001 at 23:53.

  12. #72
    Kimpatsu Guest

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    Rosi,
    The logical fallacy of bifurcation is very much present here. While I agree that the issue of killing itself is an ethical one rather than a logical one, the initial question was phrased to imply an either/or scenario: Kill or be killed. Since, with the possible exception of infantry warfare (an issue I don't want to get into here, because we're talking one-on-one, not mass armies), I still have not been presented with one convincing scenario whereby it really is kill-or-be-killed. There is always a third option, so presenting the options here as either/or is an illegal use of the "or" operand, and hence, a logical fallacy.
    Now, can anyone make out what Jerry's trying to say?
    Best,

  13. #73
    Jerry Johnson Guest

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    We often romanticize killing way too much i.e. in movies etc. And in my opinion this is a pathetic perspective at a serious and life changing subject.


    It has been studied and proven there is an emotional price to pay to kill or injure. Though in other cases doing injury to others doesn't carry as high a price as killing.


    For example, the trauma that cops go through after using deadly force. This should be a good enough example of what happens when a person kills another.


    We despite our religious culture and beliefs, feel that death in the worst thing, i.e. "Better to be judged by 12 than carried by six."

    -reference Joseph Campbell on the subject of myths and heroes


    I am not saying it is or isn't easy to kill. That is up to each individual to decide if they could or couldn't.


    It is more pleasing to the ego to scream " I can kill" then it is to whisper in humility, "I can die."

    The falsehood of the ego's immortality is present when it is only considering the affirmative to kill, and not considering the fact you also can die. This is regardless of the situation. Therefore, the majority of what has been discussed, overtly, in this thread is the assumption of the ego thinking it is immortal. That killing or even injuring a person is being successful. I am saying this isn't always the case and a more responsible discussion needs to take place. Therefore, let me quote Steven Malanosk

    "The ammount of semantics and conjecture on this thread, are note worthy, to say the least.

    At the risk of sounding redundant, I still maintain, that all the rationalization and mathematics / wishfull thinking in the world, is absolutly worthless, when it comes down to the one moment, when one is faced with such a decision, in which one has NO time to think, other than subconciously. "

    Let me add this to his last sentence these words, reacting without thought or intention. i.e. "the gun just went off, I meant to scare him. not kill him."

    So far, in this thread, It all has been academic and bravo on a serious subject that carries great implications, and consequences. Thus, as martial artists, we need to discuss it responsibly and not in the folly of clouds or egos.

    If I have offend anyone this isn't my intent. But as a martial artist I don't want to mislead myself or anyone else on the main topic. I feel because I am a martial artist and not a solider, warrior, or has never killed anyone.I owe it to those who see me as a martial artist and myself to be respectful to such a subject as I have been taught (lethal techniques- applicable or not) not mislead people with my ego hanging out. I've been there and done that. Thus, I have learned via experience that no one likes a martial artist whose mouth overloads his ass when it come to topics like this one. Again I apologize to those who might take offence and see this post as being directly or indirectly insultive to them, it isn't. But rather a curve ball to get the discussion out of the clouds and on to the ground.
    Last edited by Jerry Johnson; 18th December 2001 at 03:52.

  14. #74
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    It is more pleasing to the ego to scream " I can kill" then it is to whisper in humility, "I can die."

    This is true, you do make a point Jerry , you just have to word it better.

    As for Tony, I thought we went through this.
    Ok here's a simple scenario,( and NO I'm not trying to show off my creative writing skills) Two guys have guns pointed at each other , now for the guy defending himself , what is he to do, shoot the other in the knee cap. It's a kill or be killed situation. This can and does occur in real life Tony.

    We should keep this topic going, we can eventually compile it into a book. We can call it Can You Kill? What do you guys think?

    PS: Before writing more on this topic make sure you guys read all the posts, even though some are missing. It keeps us from repeating ourselves.

  15. #75
    Kimpatsu Guest

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    Can he not shoot the other guy in the kneecap? What's he doing with a gun anyway? I thought we were talking about unarmed combat. And if people keep repeating bifurcation or other logical fallacies, I'm going to keep pointing them out. Non illigitimi carborundum est.
    This question is really like asking, "Have you stopped beating your wife?" Whatever answer you give, you're damned. The question really being asked here (look, perspicacity! And you accuse me of being opaque! ) is, "Which would you rather do given the 'self-defence' justification: Maim or kill?" And that's a whole different issue.
    Just another 2 yen from the man who brought you "Smash the system".
    Last edited by Kimpatsu; 18th December 2001 at 07:07.

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