I usually think I have a pretty good imagination.

But it has limits. When my wife took IMPACT training (which I recommend highly), a form of combatives training that uses full-contact against aggressors wearing full-body padding, I was talking to one of the trainers about it, and when she realized that I had some martial arts background and supported what they were doing, she asked if I would consider being a ‘mugger.’

The muggers act out realistic scenarios of assault, mugging, and rape, and in that stressful environment, the women are taught some basic and effective techniques to take the fight to the attacker.

I think it’s a great program. I’ve encouraged every women I’ve ever had a serious relationship with to go through it.

And when asked if I’d help out, I realized that I couldn’t act out those scenarios to save my life.

And today, I read of a father who has been charged with murdering his eight year old daughter and her nine year old friend.

I can’t imagine it. I can’t picture it. I know it’s real; I have enough cop friends to have heard the litany of misery and horror dished out by some adults to their children.

I don’t know what these adults – these creatures – are. I’m going to go hug my eight-year old and put him to bed now.

15 thoughts on “I usually think I have a pretty good imagination.”

  1. I also can’t imagine what these creatures/monsters are. I read that this father who killed his daughter and her friend was possibly angry with his 8 year old over money. How much are talking here? A few dollars to buy a Barbie? I mean, no amount of money justifies this, but to kill your daughter because of an argument over an allowance, it boggles the mind.

    John Deere, The International Sprawl

  2. You should’ve taken the opportunity; as far as being kneed in the (padded) balls over and over again by women screaming, “NO! NO! NO! NO!” goes.. it’s a LOT of fun.

    I think the whole aggressive self-defense thing is great– against the average sex-predator/mugger dude. But I’ve heard it can lead to more adverse situations with the speed/pcp rage assualts. Hopefully your wife’s class teaches some differentiation between the two.

  3. I persuaded my college girlfriend to enroll in a self-defense course at UC Santa Cruz after she was raped, and volunteered as a throw-around dummy. The instructor obligingly threw me against a padded wall (feet up and head down) to see how I could fall. I got up fast enough so she approved.

    But this was 1970. The class just could not bring themselves to even try to hurt me. The instructor finally said thanks and asked me to leave. The students could be forceful with the instructor and each other, but not with me.

    It was partially the coeds’ mindset, partly mine and partly the instructor’s. She didn’t ask me to act like a realistic mugger and rapist – the thought never entered our heads, and I doubt I could have done it. This was in the infancy days of womens’ self-defense training.

  4. I’m right there with you, AL. There is no way on this Earth I could even act out such a scenario.

    I can watch your typical action movie; the violence is somehow dissociative and unreal. Show me something portraying honest-to-god violence against women (or any innocent, but women most of all), and I’m up and out of the room. I didn’t make it through the first five minutes of Sleeping With the Enemy before leaving in extreme distress.

    I absolutely support the classes, but I’d be no use as a faux attacker for them. None.

    The man in the story you link is pretty clearly unhinged on a deep, deep level. His previous conviction for assaulting the girl’s mother in 2001: “…He started chasing people around with a chainsaw that was running…”

  5. Do men go into prisons as monsters or become them while inside? Some of both, I expect.

    I taught women self-defense for five years (more years ago than I care to think of). Over the years several of my former students have written me to tell me they’d successfully defended themselves so I must have been doing at least a little right. I think the IMPACT system is invaluable insofar as its conducted by someone with the appropriate training in an appropriate manner. I improvised something similar myself when I was teaching. Mental preparedness is very important for successful self-defense and, unfortunately, part of that preparedness is, as you point out, overcoming inhibititions against violence which is as necessary for women defending themselves as it is to pretend attackers (or soldiers in war).

    I hope that such training does not obscure the most effective self-defense: avoidance and flight.

  6. Self-defense is good, so long as its real self defense and not that Tai-Bo crap that have probably got more women their heads handed to them than anything. Surprise is a womans best and perhaps only defense, against a determined male attacker even high level female martial artists could be in trouble. Concealed carry. Not many women can tie up a 220 pound attacker no matter how mych jiu-jitsu you teach them, but they can learn to shoot as well as any man.

  7. One of the most important things to discover in really valuable self defense training is what it is like to get hit. I have seen people in real fights get hit in the face and the shock stops them in their tracks. I agree that avoidance/ awareness is the best defense…but when those things don’t work, you have to be able to feel the rage and fight. Small females (myself included) can and do survive encounters because of this ability. Predators often count on the submissive, passive nature of their victims and will pick a softer target if possible. I encourage anyone to take agressive self defense training and impact is one of the better classes available to civilians. Good for Gracie! As for you A.L., are you sure you just didn’t want to get beat up by a girl;>?

  8. And after that, im sure you took her to the pistol range right, in fact bi-monthly trips to the pistol range would be good.

    Well, assuming you dont live in a area with anti gun laws passed by the Commies.

    Hey Marc, the USA is almost some 300 Million people, and therein there will be defective units, real monsters, with hearts of black or the inability to control their own beast within.

    It isnt true when your parents told you there are no such thing as monsters, because there is, they do exist, dont they.

    bq. As to the species of exercise, I advise the gun. While this gives moderate exercise to the body, it gives boldness, enterprise, and independence to the mind. Games played with the ball and others of that nature, are too violent for the body and stamp no character on the mind. Let your gun, therefore, be the constant companion to your walks.” — Thomas Jefferson, writing to his teenaged nephew.

    Good exercise, lugging that iron around, also very effective against monsters.

    Let us remember, that for every story we hear about, there are 10 more we dont, that dont fit the anti-American Anti-familly anti-Christian Anti-Capitalist anti-Freedom leftist criterion about what news to print.

    In more sane times, the fellow would have been dispatched to see his maker years ago.

    But, in this world we live in where killing your baby is a “choice”, and the Boy scouts are under attack because they dont want perverts put in charge of their kids ……

    Keep that date at the Pistol range Marc.

  9. PTSD.

    We see it all the time in returned military. Murder rates go up during and after a war.

    For some the PTSD initiator was child abuse. For others living in a war zone. In America we produce them in every major and moderate sized towns.

    Drug War Zones.


    Self defence is the answer. A 9mm if you are not big enought to handle a Model 1911.

    Mental preparation is essential.

  10. “Surprise is a womans best and perhaps only defense, against a determined male attacker even high level female martial artists could be in trouble. Concealed carry. Not many women can tie up a 220 pound attacker no matter how mych jiu-jitsu you teach them, but they can learn to shoot as well as any man.”

    Not true. All humans have the same vulnerable points (no matter how tall and bulked up you are, you can’t put muscles on your knees and eyes and bridge of your nose). All humans who can think can learn to identify and strike hard and with focus at vulnerable points, with parts of their bodies which can take the impact (soles of feet and palm heels, for example).

    You are not trying to “tie up” your attacker, but to disable him long enough to get away and find help. You want to disrupt his sight, breathing, or mobility, any of which will make it harder for him to pursue you.

    Also, there are all sorts of ways to get out of the grip (of throat, wrist) of even very strong individuals, if you know about leverage and focused force.

    I used to teach self-defense.

  11. The intense rage of the perpetrator is a brain miswiring problem. The pretext isn’t important. This is one of those cases where he might be able to get the right medication, but then how would he live with himself? I would just say execute him.

  12. Yehudit,

    your point is taken, but mark is largely correct. As you probably know, there are lots of martial arts ‘schools’ that are misleading as to how well they protect you. They don’t teach escape; they are teaching a 120 pound woman that she can can go toe to toe with a 300lb non martial artist because she takes karate, or Krav maga, or aikido. It simply isn’t true. Martial arts are not a Bruce Lee or Steven Seagal movie.

  13. Attaboy Johnny

    God created man, Samuel colt made them equal.

    The sidearm that gave claws to the weak, the most egalitarian leveling invention ever created by man.

    Leftists have long used street thugs as part of their enslavement tools, create a problem offer the “solution” repeat rinse recycle,, and street thugs are ineffective tools against the well armed.

    Too bad the enslavement program is working in Britain and Europe, where you can be jailed as a danger to burglars and using a butterknife to defend yourself against a rapist is a crime.

    Its nice to see that leftist program collapsing in those areas where the democraps no longer rule.

    Too bad for the Brits, other than their usefullness as an example of why the soft left are hardly any better a choice than Stalinists

  14. Yehudit and JMozart are both right. However, no matter how useful a firearm may be (and believe me, Im with you on that), you will not get everyone to carry one. So the option of self defense must still be available. There is a huge difference between “martial arts” and self defense. The ancient fighting arts are intended to confront and best an opponent. Self defense is a tool box designed to save your butt. The great self defense schools teach a combination of awareness, avoidance and techniques to swiftly and effectively create maximum pain/disorientation to accomplish flight.
    As for the evil that is out there, as uncomfortable as the knowledge can be, you have to accept that predators exist, no government entity can make them go away, there’re behavior is abnormal, therefore unpredictable, the really successful ones rarely get caught/stopped and survival depends upon awareness and constant vigilence, just as for any other creature on this earth. None of this will change unless our system of releasing violent offenders changes. The guy that killed those girls should never have been released from prison.

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