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  1. MrJ is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/18/2013 6:14pm


     Style: Keyboard Warrior

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!

    An open letter to the martial arts community from Ryan Hall

    I was very interested to find this article:

    HTML Code:
    http://www.bloodyelbow.com/2013/1/18/3891216/an-open-letter-to-the-martial-arts-community-from-ryan-hall
    It is rather long and rambling, but I think it goes to the very heart of what this website is supposed to be about. Integrity in MA, not cult behavior. Surely if the owner of a big-box franchise gym behaved as a predator this person would be called out as such and dealt with and not defended out of a warped sense of honour or blind loyalty.

    I have pasted the full article below from Bloody Elbow, and the link to Ryan's letter.

    "The things that will destroy America are prosperity at any price, peace at any price, safety first instead of duty first, the love of soft living, and the get rich quick theory of life." -- Theodore Roosevelt
    Hello everyone.
    Over the past week, certain revelations have come to light about awful, subhuman behavior on the part of a number of members of our community, some of whom I know personally.
    The worst of this is certainly the work of some truly reprehensible individuals who seem to think that they have the right to destroy the dignity and innocence of others in the pathetic service of their own desires. Some of them will hopefully bear the full brunt of the justice system’s penalty for the atrocities they have committed. Others may not be liable to judgment at the hands of the courts, but should in no way be excused for their own disgusting acts both past and recent.
    Somewhat less grievous, but still staggering in its absurd level of insensitivity, cultish wagon circling, and revolting lack of perspective has been the response of certain individuals who feel the need to blindly defend the actions of those with whom they are associated. I cannot say for certain if this is born out of some sort of woefully misguided sense of loyalty or if it is simply the basest act of self-preservation, aimed at protecting a reputation built on the connection to someone discovered to be wholly disreputable. Regardless, I would think that the vast majority of people should agree that their behavior is beyond repulsive not only its dismissiveness of the suffering of the victims involved in this debacle, but also in their staunch refusal to exercise the analytical portion of their brains and reason for themselves in anything other than a completely self-serving manner.[/COLOR]
    Making matters worse, some who would consider themselves "good" people are remaining silent, either unable or unwilling to put integrity over solidarity and financial interest. They have looked on passively as their associates have scrambled to cover their tracks, to duck and dodge inquiry into matters so grave that they demand a response. Disappointing. Many will hide behind the "I wasn’t there, it’s not my place to say anything" defense. This is a completely unacceptable stance given the information in evidence. Their reluctance to act speaks volumes about either their weak character or their already being under some level of mental control.
    It has been correctly noted over the course of history that all that is necessary for evil to thrive is the indifference or inaction of otherwise decent people. Are we really willing to accept this truth and still remain seated?
    As someone who has occupied a number of roles and stations in the martial arts community since I first became involved with it, I believe that I may be able to shed some light on why things are progressing as they are, as well as provide a cautionary tale for others who I hope will be able to avoid the pitfalls that I often plunged face-first into due to my naÔvely trusting in the good (or at the very least neutral) intentions of the people over top of me.
    Respectfully Submitted,
    Ryan Hall
    Fifty/50 Jiu-JitsuFor my full story and take on where our community is heading, please visit
    www.livingthemartialarts.com and download the PDF file
  2. Soldiermedic is offline
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    Posted On:
    1/18/2013 6:26pm


     Style: bjj/judo

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Good for him. Hopefully this starts a trend, not just condemning the crime itself, but the actions of Lloyd Irvin and some of the Team LI members.
  3. andrewa is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/21/2013 5:32pm


     Style: Grappling

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    What I find most disturbing is this from page 21 of the PDF. I can only guess what the true issues are behind the letter. I wonder if this letter and the issues that motivated it need to be raised on MABS?

    "Learn:
    Familiarize yourself with the news stories that are circulating and the associated commentary. Visit a website like http://www.rainn.org to learn more about the real effects of sexual assault on individuals, on families, on society. Read up on cult behavior. Forewarned is forearmed."
  4. andrewa is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/21/2013 5:39pm


     Style: Grappling

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Whoops. I should have followed the first link. This is disturbing.
  5. Sam Browning is online now

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    Posted On:
    1/23/2013 1:08am

    hall of famestaff
     

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    The article was frustrating, in my opinion he should have come out, and stated his differences with LI explictly in a lot less space.
  6. Ming Loyalist is offline
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    solves problems with violence

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    Posted On:
    1/23/2013 9:57am

    supporting member
     Style: Judo, Hung Family Boxing

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Browning View Post
    The article was frustrating, in my opinion he should have come out, and stated his differences with LI explictly in a lot less space.
    do you think he avoided naming LI explicitly to avoid a defamation lawsuit? that was the impression that i got.

    some have leveled the charge that ryan hall is a direct competitor to LI and that this letter is nothing more than a cheap shot at a competitor when he is down. i don't think this is the case, but i can't know. it seems to me that ryan hall had good intentions when writing the letter and that he raises a lot of important points that apply to the MA industry as a whole, rather than just LI and his association.

    however as ryan points out himself, what do i know about him other than that i like his instructional videos and he seems like a good guy? nothing, so i'm hardly in a position to judge his character.
    "Face punches are an essential character building part of a martial art. You don't truly love your children unless you allow them to get punched in the face." - chi-conspiricy
    "When I was a little boy, I had a sailor suit, but it didn't mean I was in the Navy." - Mtripp on the subject of a 5 year old karate black belt
    "Without actual qualifications to be a Zen teacher, your instructor is just another roundeye raping Asian culture for a buck." - Errant108
    "Seriously, who gives a **** what you or Errant think? You're Asian males, everyone just ignores you, unless you're in a krotty movie." - new2bjj
  7. andrewa is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/26/2013 3:32pm


     Style: Grappling

    --
    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    Quote Originally Posted by Sam Browning View Post
    The article was frustrating, in my opinion he should have come out, and stated his differences with LI explictly in a lot less space.
    My impression was that he (Ryan Hall) had been stewing over these issues for a long time and was writing this letter in his head for a long time. The sexual assault finally prompted him to do so. But again this is only my impression.
  8. Raving&Drooling is offline

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    Posted On:
    1/28/2013 11:46am


     Style: lifting

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    Hell yeah! Hell no!
    I read and agreed with much of this letter, probably because the author's motivations and early personal history are so similar to my own. But I also became frustrated with the verbal dancing he employed to avoid naming the people he is discussing. As much as he wants to speak up and confront, it still feels like he's avoiding wherever he can. Still, props for writing.

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