general rant

yell (Photo credit: mikeyp2000)

For some reason, lately, I have been coming into contact with people who want to know about martial arts training and self defense and more (as if being a martial artist makes me a ‘life coach’ or ‘guru’ or something). They ask about issues of title, rank, character/talent… and then start talking about what they read on the internet, saw in a movie, heard from some guy they took classes (and the only guy they ever took classes with too) with the conviction that they are ‘right’ (in that absolutist way) about their perspective on the issues…

Here is where it sticks in my craw during these discussions: THere seems to be some confusion about a person’s ‘right to their opinion’ meaning the same thing as everyone’s opinion being of equal value. Now, I don’t mean to sound mean or snobbish, but it just ain’t so. Just because I know about a subject, doesn’t mean that I am experienced, and definitely means I don’t carry much/any wisdom about it.

If you’ve never been a parent, you may think you know what it is to raise a child. And, admittedly, you may have some ‘perspective’ on the issue from your own upbringing and contact with others who do have children…but until you experience it, you don’t have wisdom. Heck, even having one isn’t justification to think you know what it takes to raise multiple children…

Anyone else have any dealings with the ‘armchair experts’ who, basically, have minimal knowledge, no practical experience, yet feel that they can pass wisdom on? Sorry to vent, but I’m getting sick of the ironically Bradburyian reality of members of the ‘soundbyte’ culture laying judgement on those who actually do more than read the internet or hide behind excuses when their entire position on any given topic is nearly always from internet blogs, movies, or Wiki type sources and not from training, experience, or education.

-Paul Martin

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