I like the show & Gary Sinise is a top-notch actor. However, the episode I saw this evening - involving martial arts & chess - which should have been one of my favorites of all-time, left me a bit irked.

The chess part was fine. Sad ending, but very well done.

The martial arts part was a hodge-podge of stereotypical crap. It starts with one of the investigators declaring that because one suspect is a 4th degree black belt, he is "capable of murder". Hey, writers, let me tell you that anyone is physically capable of murder. Martial arts training doesn't by definition increase a person's predisposition to violence. People have been killing since Og the caveman first picked up a rock.

The second crappy thing was both Sinise & the 1st investigator trying to talk to a lady at her dojo. She "introduces" herself to a complete stranger by placing a side kick right at his face. Someone tries that at my instructor's school & I'd take them down myself. I've never seen - or even heard - of something like that happening.

Note to the public (potential jurors, in particular): Martial artists are not even mostly like those Cobra Kai jerks from Karate Kid. Black belts are not trained deadly weapons. To date, no state to my knowledge requires that black belts "register" as weapons. A black belt is simply a student who has proven he/she is capable of learning the basics of an art.

For those of you prejudiced into thinking that a black belt on trial for defending his/her person could have completely controlled the situation, do the person a favor & imagine yourself in that person's place. It's not so simple as saying, "I'm a black belt", and all the bad guys go away. Martial artists are simply people who, as a result of training, have a slightly better chance of defending themselves. Don't buy into the urban legend B.S. that they have this magical ability to destroy legions of muggers with a dirty look.

I have a friend who was attacked by two guys in Boston,MA. It was a case of mistaken identity. They pinned him to a brick wall without provocation & threatened him. One had his head introduced to said wall & the other backed off. The police said the two just picked on the wrong guy & let it go. If this had gone to trial, would he have been given a fair shot? I just don't know.

All I'm saying is if you're in a trial with a martial artist as the defendant, please don't let that cloud your judgement. If the person was attacked, consider that maybe - just maybe - the person was scared & defended themselves based on some useful training. Unless the person just went way over the line of reasonable force, there's no reason to judge them as an avaricious miscreant bent on destruction.


Bitterroot said...

But I'll still keep a wary eye on them around my cookies! :)

(Mrs. Who showed me your gift... Classic! I ROFL'd!)

Hapkido said...

BR: Yeah, us martial artists are suckers for good cookies! Especially when they're blue, bug-eyed & have a bandage on their head. ha ha

Glad you guys liked it! One of my best ideas ever. (That's either really good or really bad. ha ha)

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