We should teach our children self-defense

When the Second Amendment states that the right to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed, it is not speaking about firearms per se, but about the right to own and carry arms (tools) for personal protection, a natural right that exists wherever we are at any given moment in time.

The Founders understood that without such a right, no other right of the people could withstand the assault of organized governmental or religious tyranny, nor the actions of individual criminals and maniacs.

Firearms were available in Italy as early as the year 1515, yet, when Galileo and others were confronted by the tyranny of the Inquisition in the 1600s, the right to defend their freedoms by engaging in armed resistance against those in authority was not considered. Protecting a city from attack was accepted by the likes of Leonardo DaVinci. He often became a sniper with a telescopic rifle of his own design, shooting invaders at 300 yards as they tried to invade the City of Florence, but that was not personal defense.

When humans faced the natural dangers of the African plains, or other wilderness environs, the need for weapons to protect against predator threat, be it beast or human, was understood viscerally, that is, it was felt and accepted as reality. When humans became city-dwellers, many lost touch with their natural instincts and grew complacent, expecting their protection to come from outside of themselves.

Let us now venture to Africa, and the true story of a native father and son out on a hunt. The father was mauled and killed by a lion. When the lion turned its attention to the son, the 12-year-old lad, trained in proper self-defense against lion attack, did not run from the lion, he faced it. At the right moment, the lad knelt down and placed his spear into the ground at a 45-degree angle, spear-point toward the lion. When the lion leapt, it was impaled and died.

Twelve-year-old children in our society would rarely have such presence of mind in such a life-and-death situation, not because they are incapable, but because we do not train our children in the art of self-defense. Most urban children are trained on how to best be prey.

I must clarify here that if a child is trained in a martial art, they are rarely getting self-defense training. So-called martial arts as they exist today are more about the choreography of a dance. Self-defense is very different. In self-defense there are no rules, only what works to survive an attack by a predator, human or beast. The predator will not admire or praise your child's dancing ability; it will not care about your feelings as a loving parent. The brain of the predator is not wired for creative thought or artistic expression. The predator does not dance or empathize. The predator kills!

Teaching children to fear guns and other defensive weapons instead of training them in their proper use is counter-productive to self-defense. Herding those untrained children into locked rooms will not provide them protection against human predators focused upon their demise. Door locks will not bar a criminal or a maniac. Defenseless children in locked rooms only afford predators a place to choose corralled victims.

Predators must be faced with weapons at our immediate disposal, kept at bay or, if necessary, as in the case of that properly-trained African lad with a spear, predators must be destroyed.

Personal safety comes from the diligent application of comprehensive self-defense, not from imagining peace. Every parent has a responsibility to provide comprehensive self-defense for themselves and their children.

Comprehensive self-defense begins with personal health that first involves nutrition and proceeds to everything else. It understands that 195,000 people die each year (534 daily) through hospital and doctor error, and that 36,000 die each year (98 daily) in traffic accidents, and that those homicide rates are all related to poor training in the practical art of comprehensive self-defense. Banning hospitals, automobiles, swimming pools, weapons or anything else that can cause damage to the body will not solve the problem that ultimately resides within the arena of education and the acceptance of personal responsibility.

As a parent-proxy, teachers have a responsibility to defend themselves and those within their charge; if they refuse that responsibility they are unfit to mentor children.

In the face of corporate, governmental or social intransigence concerning self-defense and proper training in the responsible use of self-defense weapons, there are two important words that the responsible parent must consider: home schooling!

Fox Grimaldi of Ashland teaches self-defense, nutrition, health and fitness.

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