Teach your children to hit back

I was incredibly lucky to grow up in a peaceful society …

But what about the violence that takes place behind closed doors? Unfortunately, there was plenty of that growing up. But at least the so-called "public" space, my community was a protection zone that spanned as far as my young life could appreciate.

With few exceptions, I cannot think of anyone that even swore. You weren't accosted by drunks or aggressive people, there were no brawls on the weekend. You could move anywhere in the public as a woman, as a child, as a disabled person or an elderly person. We knew the rules, whether it as at events, on the streets, in the school yard, actually everywhere people met … And best of all, they have been largely preserved.

If someone was lying on the ground in an altercation, they were not brutally kicked in the head. People actually even has something like respect for police officers and whoever dared to resist arrest or intentionally hurt them quickly regretted that, too.

What I am saying is that anyone who was attacked in the public could expect help, I would not rely on that today and, even worse, I would also not advise anyone in good conscience to provide help because every day there are reports of people who only wanted to help. And they themselves become the victims of brutal violence.

Those inhibitory thresholds I spoke about have started to, if not entirely disappeared for some, the courts are overloaded and if even police officers are afraid for life and limb, everyone should consider whether they risk serious injuries or worse if when the various groups engage in unrestrained violence. They used to be simply called "criminals." But seriously we as a nation have gone beyond that haven't we? In the US we have problems, but above all we have a huge problem with violence. One which runs through all strata, age groups and areas and a new form of brutality and inhibition is spreading, which frightens me and which particularly affects the weaker.

It meets children, women, the elderly, frail people, animals, but it meets all of us; though it prefers the weaker, which are an easy target and the people who want to help them.

I do not want to go into where the increasing violence comes from, it has long been glossed over in statistics, but in the meantime the figures speak for themselves, and it must be clear that the number of uncommon cases is unevenly higher and frighteningly high. These are crimes against citizens. Animal cruelty is not even included in most statistics. War is now raging out there, and few, mostly rural areas, have so far been spared. Those safe spaces I spoke of earlier are now our safe havens.

But we're catching up fast right now.

I was still taught to resolve conflicts peacefully, I learned to dance and paint in my spare time but I would have preferred to have spent that time studying martial arts, shooting or other options of self-defense. It never seemed necessary, our lives were different before social values shifted, education shifted, family became a marginal – only on weekends type of thing – borders opened; the judiciary system has become weak. This allows things to became normal that would once have led to an outcry in all the media before. Violence is now more of a side note, too much of it in too many places.

So those who have children, animals, old people or other vulnerable … Maybe yourself too … Those who want to be able to defend themselves and others today feel defenseless and stunned. Times have changed, our society has changed, our whole country has changed.

I think it's time to teach our kids to adjust to these changes … They need to learn to defend themselves and others when it matters, and from an early age.

Most martial arts not only convey discipline and values, but also enable effective defense when the worst are actually coming. They also allow women to effectively counter, teach how to disarm and avoid injury in falls. Exactly what our children need right now when traveling alone, on their way to school, in the city or in the evening. At some schools, they already need it on the playground.

Peace and Love, the message of my generation is unfortunately only lived by a minority.

In addition to love and a good education, give your children the chance of self-defense and protection. If they want to protect themselves and others, then they need to learn how to do that.

I never thought we would have to think about things like that, not today in 2019. But we should when we care for our children ❤

Tolerance overcomes borders, true, but society needs to defend it itself: It must prevent the intolerants from exploiting the tolerant society to turn it into its opposite.

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