Much like the rest of the world, Xen-Do was saddened and appalled to hear of the tragic death of George Floyd as a result of police brutality. We have watched the Black Lives Matter protests unfold and through them we have tried to learn and understand the extent of the problem from those who are immediately affected.
Throughout the history of martial arts, a fundamental aspect of its teachings has been respect. This is no different today. Xen-Do strives to teach our students respect in every class. This is why we bow before we begin. The dojo is as level a playing field as they come, and this is part of the beauty of the sport. But we see that the outside world pales in comparison. As social change is accelerated through the BLM protests, now is the time to take the respect we have learned on the dojo into society. That not only means treating each other with respect but also working towards elevating those that are marginalised and oppressed to create justice for all.
We cannot change what has been, but we can change what is to come. This is not just a short-term response – it’s an ongoing commitment.
As we do at the beginning of each class, we must stand together, strong, united and ready to listen and learn.
‘The ultimate measure of a man is not where he stands in moments of comfort and convenience, but where he stands at times of challenge and controversy.’ – Martin Luther King Jr