I am beside myself again. Here we have yet another incident where a lone deranged lunatic has taken it upon himself to make some sort of sick statement.
When is it going to stop?
When are we going to band together and say enough is enough? Well, I have something to say about it now, and I pray with all of my heart that it will strike the right chord with anyone who reads it.
Tagamet is the brand name of a drug called cimetidine, and it is regularly indicated in the treatment of duodenal and gastric ulcers. (I know, stay with me and you’ll see where I’m going.) Typically this drug is prescribed to adults who are over-stressed and don’t typically have very quality diets — not to otherwise healthy 8th grade boys.
I remember the day like it was yesterday. The abuse had gotten so bad that I couldn’t even go to school because I had been diagnosed with a gastric ulcer. The prescription was Tagamet. The abuse had gotten so bad that the constant stress had given me an ulcer. IN 8TH GRADE.
I look back on it now and am dumbfounded. Tagamet. That was the fix? After having suffered through the social effects of having my mother contact the school administration, my teachers, and even some of the offender’s parents themselves, the best prescription for the fix was Tagamet.
Thank the Lord for my junior high wrestling coach, Coach Daley You see, the ulcer not only got me out of school, but it also was supposed to prevent me from finishing a second perfect season. However, that’s not exactly what happened. It was more than three decades ago, and I’d bet that if I live for another 10, I’d still never forget it.
I remember sitting in his office looking across the desk at him, waiting for him to respond to the news that his star wrestler most likely wouldn’t be able to finish the season because he was being bullied?
His response changed my life — so much so that even now as I write about it, tears are welling up in my eyes. He said, “Finn, what was your record last year?” I responded, “12-0, Coach.” He nodded in agreement.
He said, “Jax, what is your record this year?” I responded, “Thus far? 9-0, Coach Daley.” He nodded in agreement again and then just sat there and stared at me.
I’m not sure why, but his silence made me incredibly uncomfortable. Finally, after what seemed like an eternity he asked, “And why do you think that is?”
You know, it’s kind of funny now that I look back on it with 30 years of perspective. Coach Daley was a phenomenal wrestler and an even better coach, but the wisdom he imparted to me that day (without me really even knowing it) transcends anything he ever did or said to me before or after.
My response: “Because they all know that on the mat, Jax Finn is no pushover!” “They know that they might score on me, but that it won’t come without cost, and most of them aren’t willing to pay it.”
He just gave me a blank yet somehow expectant look, and then I realized. I was a victim. No amount of help from him or policing by the administration would ever change it either. Further, my victim mentality made me even more of a target.
Long story short, I finished my wrestling career with an undefeated record in junior high with a 3rd place and two state titles in high school. More importantly, never again did anyone ever think of Jax Finn as an appealing target for bullying.
Don’t get me wrong — it wasn’t the change in my attitude that stopped these predators from beating on me. It was the change in their attitudes when they realized their little ego boosts would now be coming with a cost — a cost that most were not willing to pay.
“Seriously? A champion wrestler who can’t wrestle because he is being bullied?”
You’re right. It makes no sense. You’d think that I of all people would have been the least likely to be in that kind of situation, because at the end of the day I already had the means, training and skills necessary to not only defend myself against these bullies, but really turn the tables and be the bully myself. So I did. I defended myself and I defended others and I NEVER apologize for it either. (I used the present tense of apologize on purpose…because I still don’t.)
So what’s the point?
It’s simple. Call them what you want. Terrorists, lunatics, mentally deranged, fanatics — whatever! It simply doesn’t matter because at the end of the day, they’re nothing more than bullies. They are cowards who get off on putting the fear of God into those who are incapable of defending themselves.
They are cowards, and cowards target those who are least likely to defend themselves. They actively seek them out. I know this from profound personal experience.
And no amount of intervention or new rules (laws) will ever change it. In fact, in my case these things just made the perpetrators even more intent on “giving me what I had coming.”
Yes, that’s how they think.
Did the bullying stop when I stood up for myself? Actually, no it didn’t. It got worse, but as soon as the word got out that little Finney wasn’t as much of a pushover as everyone thought, things changed. Things changed for me and things changed for my friends too.
My willingness to defend myself not only diminished the threat to me personally, but also prevented those that would do me harm from doing the same to those that associated with me for fear of my reprisal. Hmm. Now there’s a novel concept.
Look, no amount of laws, no amount of regulation, no amount of policing is going to prevent stuff like this from happening. As long as there are people willing to be victims then there will be a select few jack-wagons who are more than willing to step up and terrorize them. It’s how it is, like it or not.
So what is the solution? Well, the answer is one of those things that is easy to say yet seemingly impossible to do. Stop being a victim. Stop expecting others to do for you what you should be doing for yourselves by default. Understand that fear is what these people want, and if they know you have it, they will target you.
Lastly, understand that humans fear that which they don’t know and don’t understand. The only way to overcome this kind of fear is by confronting it and making the necessary preparations so that if it does ever happen there is confidence that it can and will be overcome.
So that’s what it all boils down to, isn’t it? Overcome fear by first preparing for it, and then, when the opportunity presents itself, by answering the call to confront it. Think about it folks: There’s a reason these loons are targeting our schools and not, well, anywhere else that they may encounter any kind of resistance. They are prime targets in the mind of a predator and the VERY LAST THING we should do is make it easier for them to hurt us there by making it impossible to defend ourselves (gun control).
We don’t need our government to fix this problem. In fact, even if they truly wanted to, it is asinine for anyone to believe that they could. This is a problem we must fix ourselves. Take the initiative. Learn about self-defense. Learn how to defend yourselves, and do it when you need to. Right now the message is that Americans are sheep. And that’s what the world sees.
If you think these school shootings are bad, wait until ISIL or the Taliban puts their chips in the pot and decides to initiate one of these themselves.
The carnage will be unlike anything any of us have ever even imagined.
(Forstchen’s book The Day of Wrath is, however, a very compelling description of such an event for those of you who would like some help imagining such a calamity.)
The bottom line: Wake up, toughen up, and do whatever is necessary to make sure you are prepared should the time ever come that it is necessary. But remember, being prepared doesn’t end with packing heat, and it is not an individual effort. Being prepared is a collective issue in which individuals participate.
The point is (and if you’ve never heard me say this then it is the first time you’ve ever read any of my stuff) being prepared starts with being a good neighbor, so if you haven’t yet, get over to your neighbor’s house and make the introduction!
That’s all I have to say about that.
P.S. I don’t have any deals put together for you today. This shooting thing has got me twisted 3-ways to the wall. If you like what I have to say — heck even if you don’t like it but maybe agree just a little with my backwoods Idaho-boy logic — then support me by preparing yourself. Share this blog with your friends and family and let’s make a difference together.
P.P.S. As much as I have tried, I am just not physically capable of sending you an email without inserting some kind of deal. Crazy, right? Something about not looking a gift horse yada yada yada.
I’ll just make it simple and give you a one-time coupon for 30% off your next purchase*. Just use the promo code “STANDUP” when you check out online (WWW.EFOODSDIRECT.COM) or call us at 800-810-4441 and tell your customer service agent that you are ready to STAND UP against those who would do you harm and save an instant 30% off of your order.
*Excludes all sale items and Lion Energy items. Coupon code valid from 10/2 through 11:59 on 10/5.