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#370514 - 11/24/07 02:55 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: Dereck]
medulanet Offline
Professional Poster

Registered: 09/03/03
Posts: 2142
Loc: Phoenix, Arizona USA
Quote:

Agreed. A blue belt in BJJ would be equal to or even greater then a black belt in another martial art ... and you start with white and next proceed to blue. When or even if sometime in my life I did get a blue belt in BJJ, I know my time I put in and what I learn will be far greater a feat and more technical them most black belts in other martial arts.




True, yes, but I have seen BJJ BBs beaten by people with no belts, just superior fighting skill. If you are comparing a full contact competitive art like BJJ to a non competitive kata based style then this will always be the case. Go to any commercial boxing gym and then go to a commercial karate dojo. You go from the real deal to kindercare and/or desperate housewives.
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#370515 - 11/24/07 02:57 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: fileboy2002]
Dereck Offline
Prolific

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 10413
Loc: Great White North
That is "your" perception. For others all I see is that a "person" cannot perform the required techniques to meet the standards. If they can't then they don't deserve the reward that goes with it. I don't care if that person is able or disable. Lowering the standards to allow a disabled person to obtain it but not lowering it to those same standards for an able bodied person is discrimination. We are not all equals whether you are able or disabled. We all cannot obtain certain things in life no matter how much we want to ... we have to face it. But you stand a better chance if you work hard at it and it is the "journey" that should be the important thing.
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#370516 - 11/24/07 03:03 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: fileboy2002]
fileboy2002 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/13/05
Posts: 999
Loc: Chicago, IL
This may be a bit off topic, but it is a question that came into my mind as a result of this discussion and I wonder how others here feel about it.

I was surprised to hear earning a black belt compared to playing in the NFL. That strikes me as hyperbole. Earning a 1st degree black belt is more like making the local bowling team.

When I earned my 1st degree, one of the senior instructors at my school congratulated me and said, "Now you can begin to learn something." My heart dropped. I thought I HAD learned most of what there was to learn already. But now, years later, I realize he was right: earning a 1st degree blackbelt is an important milestone; however, it marks the beginning of a process, not the end of one.

I think that is why I balk at the implication that earning a black belt is some great honor whose sacred sybolism must be protected from the allegedly unworthy. To me, the black belt IS that minimum standard we have been talking about.

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#370517 - 11/24/07 03:07 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: fileboy2002]
Cord Offline
Prolific

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

And no, I would not support a Special Olympics solution. I think relegating people who now particpate in regular martial arts classes to some Gimp B-team would be a giant step backwards.




This is your whole paragraph. I have not taken it out of context. Read it and tell me what you really feel it tells me about your opinion of the special olympics. Feel free to lie to me, just dont lie to yourself.
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#370518 - 11/24/07 03:07 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: fileboy2002]
Dereck Offline
Prolific

Registered: 10/04/04
Posts: 10413
Loc: Great White North
Quote:

the black belt IS that minimum standard we have been talking about.




For once we can agree; it is the minimum "standard". You cannot perform the minimum standard then you don't get the belt. If this is not the case then just hand everybody the black belt when the walk in the door and we can be done with this once and for all.
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#370519 - 11/24/07 03:24 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: Dereck]
Cord Offline
Prolific

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

For once we can agree; it is the minimum "standard". You cannot perform the minimum standard then you don't get the belt. If this is not the case then just hand everybody the black belt when the walk in the door and we can be done with this once and for all.




You know, this is my perspective exactly. everyone who trains hard and dedicates themselves to a persuit deserves credit for their perseverance and determination, but that credit should not, by default be indicative of skill and ability.
I have an acquaintance who runs the big marathons for charity- he has done NY, London, and god knows which others countless times. He has one speed- a sort of 'plod' that gets him across the line never less than 4.5 hours and never more than 5. He has raised tens of thousands of pounds for charity, and has covered more miles on foot than most of us will ever do. If I were to tell him he was a great runner, he would laugh his a$$ off- he knows that he is not. he gets his sense of accomplishment from outside of performance related goals.
I guess the whole thing comes down to a re-phrasing of the thread question- not who earns blackbelts, but rather what criteria do you use to define a blackbelt. In my mind, it HAS to be martial skill indicative. If you base it predominantly on work ethic, enthusiasm or 'spiritual growth', then you may as well go around handing them out to people who display those traits outside of MA, like an honourary award. Of course, then one has to ask if that would devalue or remove all meaning behind it.
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#370520 - 11/24/07 04:13 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: Cord]
fileboy2002 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/13/05
Posts: 999
Loc: Chicago, IL
I used the phrase "Special Olympics solution" because someone else mentioned the Special Olympics earlier, suggesting disabled people be denied black belts but given gold belts as a kind of hald-assed consolation prize. I have defended the right of disabled people to parrticipate alongside able-bodied people throughout this thread, Cord. Read more carefully before you make snotty insinuations.

BTW: I also said I did NOT feel disabled people should be competing against able-bodied people in tournaments. But I see no good reason to dent them black belts.

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#370521 - 11/24/07 04:19 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: Dereck]
fileboy2002 Offline
Enthusiast

Registered: 11/13/05
Posts: 999
Loc: Chicago, IL
Granting black belts to disabled has no negative effect whatsoever on able-bodied black belts. All you accomplish by denying black belts to disabled people is to symbolically slap them in the face. Period.

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#370522 - 11/24/07 04:29 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: fileboy2002]
Cord Offline
Prolific

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

I used the phrase "Special Olympics solution" because someone else mentioned the Special Olympics earlier




Me.

Quote:

suggesting disabled people be denied black belts but given gold belts as a kind of hald-assed consolation prize.




Thats not what I said at all. i suggest you read posts more carefully.

Quote:

I have defended the right of disabled people to parrticipate alongside able-bodied people throughout this thread




You wrote:
Quote:

I am not suggesting disabled people "can do anything." I would not, for example, tell a disabled person they could compete in tournaments against able-bodied people. Nor would I tell someone in a wheelchair that, with enough training, they will be able to defend themselves against someone who can walk.




You see, by focussing on the disablity, your 'fairness' is all about 'cants', by using true equality, you focus on 'do your best and see what happens- you may suprise yourself'

Quote:

Cord. Read more carefully before you make snotty insinuations.




Feel free to point out where the direct quotes I have pointed out have been misunderstood, or how I could interperate them any way other than the way you have written them.



Edited by Cord (11/24/07 04:30 PM)
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#370523 - 11/24/07 05:07 PM Re: Who earns black belts? [Re: medulanet]
MattJ Offline
Free Rhinoplasty!
Prolific

Registered: 11/25/04
Posts: 15634
Loc: York PA. USA
Quote:

Yes, but that is the standards or emphasis put on the belt in YOUR art/dojo. In others, such as BJJ, getting a BB is VASTLY different from being in the "little league(s)".




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.
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