April 30, 2023 at 10:09 am #417996
Hello, I am Belinda, a 25-year-old from Belgium, residing in Arkansas for the past 6 years, which hasn’t always been easy for integration.
Here’s the story: I have been practicing Taekwondo for 2 years, and my club has a few young white supremacists around the age of 16 or 17. During one of the recent training sessions, the coach paired me with the worst of them for a SPAR. He often hurled insults at me while I was cleaning houses for families in the neighborhood, but of course, never to my face and always from his car. I never responded.
The guy is taller, heavier, more experienced, and clearly hostile… just great…
The match began and, as expected, he went all out, hitting hard and seemingly wanting to knock me out quickly. I held my ground, and after a few minutes, I dominated the fight with a score of 13 to 4. I saw him growing more and more agitated while the situation made me smile. He began to insult me, calling me “sheboons” every time I hit him.
The fight continued, and he aimed powerful kicks at my chest. I blocked them, but it hurt a lot, and I understood that he was trying to injure me. I told him to stop, but he didn’t care. After his third attempt, I was genuinely angry, so as he was about to aim at my chest again, I swiftly landed my foot directly between his legs. He fell to his knees, clearly hit where it hurts. In my momentum, I followed up with a strong kick to his face. He collapsed like a sack of potatoes at my feet, completely knocked out.
His two friends witnessed the scene and were on the verge of attacking me. The coach intervened to handle the situation. Then, these idiots tried to wake up their “champion” in bad shape. After few minutes out, he eventually regained consciousness but couldn’t walk anymore, so they took him to the hospital.
The coach didn’t see the entire scene, but he understood that I had somewhat overstepped the rules. I am suspended for three sessions. My “opponent” shouldn’t set foot in the club for at least two months, time to recover..
Since then, someone has tagged “sheboons” on my car, and I don’t feel safe at all. I’m a little scared that this gang of idiots will seek revenge, and I don’t know what to do anymore.April 30, 2023 at 1:57 pm #418005
I am so sorry that you have encountered such cruelty and ignorance. Did you go to the police about what was done to your car?
Men who have had their ego’s bruised are quite dangerous creatures and when alcohol is added into the mix it can lead to very unwise actions so I am not surprised that you are concerned for your safety.
How attached are you to your present location maybe it is time to move on to a less bigoted neighborhood.
Also I am surprised that your coach made such a pairing, does he not realise the character of these men?
I wish you peace & safetyMay 1, 2023 at 7:40 am #418020
Hello Roberta and thanks for your answer,
Yes, I’ve made a report on police but to be honest, the policeman seems to not taking it seriously so I don’t think they ‘ll do that much.
To be honest, I hate this place but my family is here for profesionals reasons and unfortunatly, I can’t really move, even if I would love to live somewhere else.
I was also really surprised by the coach decision. After the incident, I told him what happened but basicaly, he did blame me for using illegal moves. He was mad that I did kick him while he was still on the floorMay 1, 2023 at 8:13 am #418013appletreegardenParticipant
this sounds like a very dangerous situation
the boys are very young and possibly, in a bad case, they “echo” each other with words about outrage/revenge etc.
– i hope you can talk to the police
– consider moving away from there (i mean just considering): arkansas seems to be a more racist state in the us
(according to https://www.thetoptens.com/states-provinces/most-racists-states-us/)
– maybe you can use google / google maps to find any parties you can talk to or get help
(i searched this site but it has no anti-racism office if that is a thing anyway…: https://arktimes.com/arkansas-blog/2021/01/08/where-to-get-help-a-resource-list); or a hotline to get help maybe??
– talk to your taekwondo coach, maybe ask for help, talk about the fight just like you explained it in your post and that you fear your opponent might still feel agitated and growing his hostility seeking for revenge
– if anyhow possible speak to any people that seem kind, more open, peaceful/adult etc. …. to get witnesses/allies
– maybe you can find someone to walk you home (for instance after taekwondo) etc. so you don’t walk around alone much
– if there is room for kindness/diplomacy you can visit the boy in hospital (and bring some friends of yours to be more protected) and bring flowers and excuse… (if you have a way to take the first step towards them, that lets you know better how they feel and you get a current view over the situation. on the other hand their beliefs are likely very strong and this can also still be very dangerous or just in vain)May 1, 2023 at 8:28 am #418022
I am guessing that the coach may now feel guilty about his unwise pairing and failure to monitor & stop the bout at an earlier stage & so he reacted by blaming you if the first instance.
Is that the only dojo in the area? How do you feel about returning to the same setting?
I am sorry that the police failed to take the hateful vandalism of your car seriously.
I hope that your future is peacefully & harassment free.May 1, 2023 at 8:40 am #418025appletreegardenParticipant
it is a shame that the police made the impression to be not very concerned. because they should truly care for the safety of all citizens
i don’t know what kind of attitude your coach has and if he has reason to be mad because you are already aware that you did react not in a sports spirit way (and neither did your opponent). so being mad at you is not very helpful. (but you said you were surprised by your coach’s reaction, maybe he usually acts in another way?)
you did the wrong thing in that moment in the last actions of your taekwondo fight, but you already said that you where in that “momentum” and maybe you were just both unconciously driven by your thoughts about/against each other, so the fight just happened the way it did.
actually both/all of you just maybe could fight more effectively if you were practicing some kind of medition or just awareness of sensations/thoughts etc. — so your moves are not affected by emotions etc., but just concerned about a great fight, improving yourself and fairness — but it is the coach that is your taekwondo leader (if he is) and it is on a leader to correspond to that or make it a value
(and regarding my previous post, maybe you can avoid these boys? you can try to explain yourself to your opponent from that fight and try to deescalate the situation. on the other hand maybe it is better to just avoid them as good as possible… i hope you have some friends/family members to talk to)
kind regardsMay 14, 2023 at 8:44 am #418726May 14, 2023 at 10:10 pm #418749HelcatParticipant
That’s awful! I’m so sorry that you had to deal with that racism at a place that is supposed to be safe for everyone in the community. It says a lot about the coach’s character that you weren’t supported when you were clearly wronged. That guy was begging for an ass-kicking. Well done on defending yourself during the sparring session, taking the graffiti matter to the police and removing yourself from such an intolerant place. No one should have to deal with this! I’m glad that some members supported you. It sounds like there is a divide between racists and non-racists now.
It sucks that there are no other options nearby. I hope that you find another hobby. You’re a brave and strong lady! I hope all of this settles now that you’ve left the club.May 15, 2023 at 2:28 am #418755
No one should be threaten verbally and as you can see from your latest encounter a verbal slanging match only escalates itself it sows & water the seeds of anger in all parties mindstreams. These men are dangerous and poking a hornets nest is probably not such a wise thing to do.
I suggest that you look into non violent communication, helping to keep your dignity & integrity intact.
A comment like ” I see the potential in you to become a really nice person” rather than reminding these people that you hospitalized their friend might just start to turn their mind away from hatred and you are also not adding any poison into your mindstream.