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#370524 - 11/24/07 05:27 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: MattJ]
Cord Offline
Prolific

Registered: 01/13/05
Posts: 11399
Loc: Cambridge UK.
Quote:


Exactly my point. I am stating that maybe it's time to put the (martial) worth back in the black belt, by having it equate to HIGH standards, not minimums or low-level basics.




Here here. And my point is that there are enough impaired people out there who have truly achieved the remarkable, and have trancended imposed limitations, that special treatment/free-rides based on disability are insulting to a community capable of genuine excellence.
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#370525 - 11/25/07 02:08 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: Cord]
Dereck Offline
Prolific

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 10413
Loc: Great White North
Nice to know that there still is some intelligent life out there.
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"IF I COME ... I'M BRINGING THE PAIN WITH ME"

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#370526 - 11/26/07 07:05 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: Cord]
fileboy2002 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/13/05
Posts: 999
Loc: Chicago, IL
If getting a black belt HAS to be indicative of martial skills, then a whole lot of able-bodied people who have them don't deserve them.

Let's take this arguement to its logical conclusion:

If only people with adequate martial skills deserve to wear back belts, what about able-bodied people who earned black belts but are now disabled? I once had a neighbor who earned a black belt in Shotokan karate. Years later, he lost a hand in a workplace accident. Should we strip of his black belt now? Following your logic, we should.

What about black belts who have grown too old or infirm to train? Should an elderly black belt, now crippled by artheritis, be stripped of that rank? We once had a female student who, after earning her red belt, came down with lupus. Should she have been told not to bother continue training? According to your logic, yes. After all, as a result of her illness, she would no longer have the precious "martial skills."

Lets look at some of the practical problems with denying disbled people black belts:

There is no effective way to implement it, at least not on a large scale. Most schools operate autonomously, and having one school deny black belts to disabled people will only cause the disbaled to go to elsewhere.

Most schools depend on less-than-ideal students to keep them financially solvent. What kind of message would banning diabled black belts send to the overweight, middle-aged housewife? To the parents of the hyperactive 8 year old? Many people would abandon schools with such a policy, driving them out of business.

Any school (or martial arts governing body) who adopted a "no black belts for the disbled" policy would be widely criticized and maybe even sued. A strong case could be made that such a policy violated the ADA.

At the heart of this seems to be a notion that an able-bodied person's black belt is somehow dirtied by the fact a disbaled person might also have one. This is simply not true.

BTW, the general public is not all that impressed by people who hold black belts. They may have been a generation or two ago, when martial arts were first gaining popularity and still had a certain mystique about them. Nowadays, many people PREFER the idea of fighting martial artists. As one bouncer friend of mine out put it, "I never saw a so-called 'karate master' who didn't end up getting his ass kicked."

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#370527 - 11/26/07 07:05 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: Dereck]
yuanofkienninja Offline
Member

Registered: 06/11/07
Posts: 33
First of all I'd like to say welcome to Democracyland. Here in Democracyland, the OWNER of an establishment decides who he teaches. The OWNER of said establishment decides how his students are graded, and what they are taught. The public is free to come and go as they wish, provided that they do not become a nuisance to the OWNER of the establishment. Political Correctness is an abomination. Please enjoy your stay in Democracyland.
_________________________
Hey, man!!! I see you over there! You ain't no freakin' ninja!

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#370528 - 11/26/07 07:51 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: Cord]
fileboy2002 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/13/05
Posts: 999
Loc: Chicago, IL
Cord,

It is not the disabled who doubt they deserve black belts--it is the able bodied who doubt it. You are protecting the disabled from a sense of inferiority they do not have, and pandering to the bigotiry of those who feel threatened by their accomplishments.

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#370529 - 11/26/07 08:52 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: MattJ]
jdproce Offline
Stranger

Registered: 04/20/07
Posts: 2
Loc: Mesa Az.
All a black belt signifies is that the student has become proficient in the basic techniques of their particular style. The student doesn't really learn to be skillful in those techniques until they have put the time in their training, and that takes years. I compare it to learning a musical instrument; A person can strum some chords and play some basic songs after a short time, but doesn't become "one" with the instrument and become skillful until they have put the time in. It is my opinion then, that anyone can achieve shodan if they demonstrate proficiency in the basics. At the Dojo where I study, as part of my community service requirement to reach Shodan, we are developing ways to teach Kata to the physically challenged. The only limitations are in the mind

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#370530 - 11/26/07 09:08 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: fileboy2002]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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#370531 - 11/26/07 10:05 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: MattJ]
oldman Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 07/28/04
Posts: 5884
Folks,
One question has been on my mind during the course of this thread.

1. Of the people who have posted, whom among you have ever awarded a black belt?

Maybe the question "Who gives black belts" would be just as interesting.

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#370532 - 11/26/07 10:41 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: oldman]
yuanofkienninja Offline
Member

Registered: 06/11/07
Posts: 33
I've seen a lot of people that have no business awarding black belts doing just that. What does the black belt mean? Is it a license to print money? Is it an award for most cheeseburgers eaten? An invitation to whip the wearer's a**? I have seen it be all of those things. Who cares. And umm... political correctness be damned.
_________________________
Hey, man!!! I see you over there! You ain't no freakin' ninja!

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#370533 - 11/26/07 10:59 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: oldman]
BrianS Offline
Higher rank than you
Professional Poster

Registered: 11/04/05
Posts: 5959
Loc: Northwest Arkansas
I have awarded shodan to three young men who trained hard with me and two other instructors for six years. I was nidan and the ranking instructor was godan.

Of the three there is one who is still going strong. One is in college, and the other one is raising a family.

Our karate class now consists of four 2nd kyu's.

All of these people are competent fighters with solid techniques, and good people overall. I would match any of them with the same rank from any other school out there.
_________________________
The2nd ammendment, it makes all the others possible. <///<




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