What If Richard Dimitri Got Fat?

Today's blog is in reaction to a post I put up the other day on Facebook. Now before I get into this, I want to make it clear that over the years I am sure I have been guilty of this as well, so no need to tell me you think I am looking down on anyone else, but in an effort to keep growing personally and professionally, I thought it important to blog about this for myself and anyone else who might see any value in it.

The other day, I, as well as others shared a video of one of my new Facebook friends with one of his students or friends. I will respectfully say he is overweight in this video. He was offering his thoughts on the reality of knife attacks. In my opinion, he had many valuable thoughts and tips, as well as some I would respectfully disagree with, but that is not the point of this blog. While there were a number of comments agreeing and disagreeing with his thoughts, it really hit me how many people decided to comment on his weight, and making it appear that he could not be credible due to his size. I completely understand if you put your video or written material out there for the public, you will be critiqued, but for people to jump to judgement based on his size alone, is not only ridiculous, but also robs one of the opportunity to pick up one or two bits of advice that might be of use. While certain professions carry a close association to one's appearance or health, even then, I think it is not only judgemental, but also discriminatory of us to automatically discredit them based on appearance alone. If you had a life threatening heart condition and your heart surgeon was the best in the world, but overweight, would you care? Now in professions where they may have a direct relationship to you to save your life, such as a fireman or woman, or police officer, you might want them to be in the best possible shape, but if they pass the requirements for the position, should it matter what they look like?

Any automatic judgement we make based on size, appearance, skin color, or gender has the potential to rob us of education.

In the self defense industry I have had many men question what I know saying something to the effect of, "You don't look that tough, what are you going to be able to show me?" I laugh it off, teach, and then let them judge if it was worth training with me or not. Have you not seen self defense video of someone who looks like what you would expect a "self defense person", to look like, to then find out that they taught material you thought was garbage. The definition of credibility is, "the quality of being trusted and believed in". Could there be value in looking past some of the automatic physical judgements we make? Again, agree or disagree with the information or material taught, but at least give it a chance beyond some of our superficial beliefs.

My YouTube video of Richard Dimitri explaining the "Reality of Knife Attacks" has more than 760,000 views. The vast majority of them are positive, but it is amazing how many people commented that he lost credibility with them due to his colorful language, lololol. Really? To discredit the potentially life saving information he is giving due to his swearing is more a loss for the person viewing if that is the sole reason to stop viewing the video. So, because he swears his material can't be believed in? You may morally be offended by swearing, but if one is truly interested in learning, would it not be of value to look past that? Everyone has their beliefs, morals, and opinions, but I think far too often we lose out by not listening to the message.

Another example is experience. We often discredit someone due to our perception that they must have a "lack of experience" due to their age, or we think they are now too old to be in touch with the reality of self defense today. Just because someone is young or old doesn't mean they don't have some valuable information to teach us. Listen, absorb what is useful, and move on. Don't shut the door to learning from someone young or old.

Now to the title of the blog. When I sat down and thought about this topic, what came to mind was, "What If Richard Dimitri Got Fat?" Hmmmm.....would I rethink any of the following questions?

1) Do his self defense teachings lessen in quality to any degree? NOPE! 2) Does his gaining weight have any effect on my performance? NOPE!

3) Does it diminish any of his real life experiences with violence? NOPE!

4) Does his credibility lower in my opinion from pre to post weight gain? NOPE!

5) Would I hold any less respect for him? NOPE!

I welcome your thoughts and comments whether you agree or disagree!

Chris Roberts

Are You Open Minded In Self Defense Discussions?
Awareness Awareness Awareness - Knife Attack

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Saturday, 24 August 2019
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