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Why we train to fight
Why we train to fight

Both Delguidice Sensei and I came up through the karate ranks and earned our black belts learning Shotokan Karate the “traditional Japanese” way. And I actually trained for three years in Japan and earned a 2nd degree black belt through the “Kenshinkai” organization, which was definitely traditional Japanese. (For those who want to know, “kai” in this context indicates an…

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Shoto’s 20 Principles: Keep your karate boiling
Shoto’s 20 Principles: Keep your karate boiling

This is the first in an occasional series of short posts on Gichin Funakoshi’s “twenty principles of karate,” a set of concise axioms describing the Master’s philosophy of applying one’s study of karate to one’s everyday life, and vice versa. The 20 principles were first published in 1938, when Funakoshi (“Shoto”) was 70 years old. The English translation I am…

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The legal elements of self-defense: Conclusion
The legal elements of self-defense: Conclusion

This is the final post in an eight-part series on the necessary components of a successful plea of “self-defense” in the case where a person has had to employ lethal force to protect himself or others* from harm. This “self-defense” type of legal defense normally comes up in cases when a person uses a weapon, particularly a firearm, to kill…

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The legal elements of self-defense: Reasonableness
The legal elements of self-defense: Reasonableness

This series has covered the elements that constitute a legally justifiable act of self-defense. This topic is usually presented for cases in which a person uses a firearm to defend himself, but we have been applying it to hypothetical cases in which a person trained in martial arts used their “empty hand” techniques to inflict lethal force against an attacker.…

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The legal elements of self-defense: Avoidance
The legal elements of self-defense: Avoidance

This is the 6th post in the series covering the legal elements required for a successful plea of self-defense. Today we will look at the fourth of the five elements, as described in Andrew F. Branca’s book “The Law of Self Defense.” We have already looked at Innocence, Imminence, and Proportionality. We have learned that a legally justifiable self-defense requires…

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