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DBMA Martial Arts Forum => Martial Arts Topics => Topic started by: Mick C. on March 07, 2017, 08:18:06 AM

Title: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: Mick C. on March 07, 2017, 08:18:06 AM
I don't know if this is an appropriate topic of discussion on the Martial Arts Forum, as it crosses the line over into politics so I'll leave that up to Crafty. I'm not really interested in discussing the politics involved on the MA side, but I'd be interested in hearing discussion on what we can learn from watching relatively unskilled fighters (mostly - there may be some with some training) try to wallop each other, both from the standpoint of skill sets and a new cultural phenomenon.

In the recent anti-Trump / pro-Trump riots in Berkeley, as well as fights related to the Inauguration, clips on the news and YouTube showed numerous examples of stick fights and staff fights (using "flagpoles" brought to the protests). More recently, at the melee that resulted after the confrontation between pro-Trump and anti-Trump (the "Antifa") protestors, the confrontations seem to be assuming a ritualized context of community fighting, as both sides are increasingly arming themselves with sticks and staves, as well as more modern weapons such as pepper spray which is being used indiscriminately. In response to the rising tide of aggression, you can see protestors begin to armor themselves with helmets, face masks, shin guards (I would imagine cups), and chest protectors, eye protection, and carrying sticks and wooden shields, frequently painted with insignia representing their causes.

The melee-type battles that follow look like a mix of an unskilled full-contact stick fighting meet, SCA, and African tribal ritualized combat. It's interesting to consider whether these kind of community fights stoke tensions or act as some kind of communal pressure valve, as they seem to do in third-world settings.

Here's an example of the type of protection pro-Trump fighters are sporting:



Anti-Trump: Not sure of the significance of the 3 arrows:



Technique seems to be about what you would expect:


There are some real injuries:





Even innocent bystanders are at risk:


The flags seem to be carried not only for group identification purposes but also to be used as staves/spears:



Short, heavy flagpoles may be a work-around to avoid being accused of carrying a weapon, as a stick supporting a flag or protest sign is probably a 1st Amendment issue:


Here's a pretty stout flagpole:


Sticks are carried and used more frequently:


Some Youtube videos of the melee:

Again, I hope this is an appropriate area of discussion for the forum.
Title: Re: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: Crafty_Dog on March 09, 2017, 07:57:31 PM
Nice find-- good work!  :-D
Title: Re: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: G M on March 11, 2017, 10:58:40 PM
This will work it's way to edged weapons, firearms and explosives in time.
Title: Re: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: Mick C. on March 12, 2017, 08:23:58 AM
This will work it's way to edged weapons, firearms and explosives in time.

The guy in the top photo (who goes by the monicker "Based Stick Man") has at least two visible knives. He got arrested for those under California's "Dagger" law, but was later released without being charged.
Title: Re: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: Crafty_Dog on March 13, 2017, 03:18:39 PM
I noticed that.

It would appear that a lot of pressure is building up as we circle the vortex that may well be a portal to a dimension we will not like when we get there , , ,
Title: Re: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: Mick C. on March 15, 2017, 12:41:09 PM
That drill/warm-up you taught us at a seminar - where you try to touch as many people in the room without being touched yourself (to the tune of "Represent Cuba") - would have been really good practice for anyone caught up in that mob. 360 degree awareness is hard.

If the old saying is true that you only perform in combat at 50% (or whatever) of your skill level when practicing, I would imagine that melee fighting would drop that skill level another 25% or so.
Title: Re: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: Mick C. on March 15, 2017, 12:46:05 PM

Berkeley PD photo of weapons and such seized from rioters.
Title: Re: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: G M on March 15, 2017, 06:53:34 PM
Voluntarily putting yourself into these types of situations is the perfect of example of going to stupid places and doing stupid things with stupid people.
Title: Re: Community Stick/Staff Fights in Berkeley and Elsewhere
Post by: Crafty_Dog on March 19, 2017, 08:40:34 PM
Mick C:

Yes, you get it.
Title: Things continue to escalate and evolve...
Post by: G M on April 16, 2017, 08:18:53 PM

SUNDAY, APRIL 16, 2017
Mailvox: fighting antifa

A firsthand report from the Second Battle of Berkeley from a reader:
Those Nike batting helmets are light, but they work! I took a rock to the top of my head yesterday that probably would have had me out.We also tested it before the saturday with a could of good smacks to the sides and back with both dowels and 1x3s. The impact jerked your head, but it protected against the pain and did a reasonable job of getting the blow to skate along the curves of the helmet.

One of the folks there next to me wasn't wearing a helmet, and took a nasty smack in the head with a thrown full mini-can of soda. He recovered OK, but there was a LOT of blood. They have video of him getting treated.

Wear a helmet...even if you are fit and young. I armored up because I am slow, but even those fit madmen dodging rocks on the front line could use it.

...and VD, They did a fantastic job of keeping the lines together yesterday. They had folks watching for flanking and the berserkers (that's what those based millennials were fighting like...absolutely breathtaking) at the front were keeping an ear out for the yell to pull back when they smashed into the front lines of the very skinny antifa janissaries. There were only a few incidents of folks pushing too far and getting enveloped.

Gloves are necessary as well. I started out with my motorcycle gloves, but lost them when I took them off to put some gauze on the fellow how to smack with the soda. Even though I didn't take a hit in the hands, I still learned why I needed them after the rally when I was heading back home. I didn't get pepper sprayed directly, but I did go through the clouds a couple of times and helped a few guys holding their head back when they were getting their eyes washed out. Pepper spray residue was all over my hands and when I took off my mask, helmet and goggles, I instinctively wiped my lips. Noob mistake that would have been mitigated if I was wearing gloves. I'm glad there were no cameras to capture my "it's too spicy" dance.
Good to know that there are some tactically-aware leaders taking charge, and that people are following their directions. Discipline plus preparation plus leadership usually equals victory. I noticed the discipline right away in the first videos I'd seen; it's far more important that everyone is on the same page than for anyone to engage in individual heroics or pursue optimal tactical objectives.

It was also significant to see that the tanks were going after the antifa leaders. Remember, antifa is all offense, so the leaders are not expecting to engage in any direct conflict themselves. The wedgies were a nice touch; another effective humiliation is to tie their shoelaces together or to remove their belts and bind their ankles with them.

It seems to me there ought to be a bounty placed on antifa flags and masks. I certainly wouldn't mind having a flag or two to hang in my office as a trophy.
Title: The Left’s Embrace Of Political Violence Backfires In Berkeley
Post by: G M on April 17, 2017, 03:08:41 PM
The Left’s Embrace Of Political Violence Backfires In Berkeley

Deputy Editor
11:39 PM 04/16/2017
Berkeley, California, descended into total chaos Saturday as right-wingers and left-wingers engaged in massive brawls throughout the college town.

The violent scenes captured the attention of cable news and social media, and inevitably led to questions as to who should take the blame for the ordeal.

Liberals on Twitter were quick to point the finger at the “alt-right” for inciting a riot, with a few brave tweeters inevitably pointing the finger at Russia for the violence.

(Note: this guy is not actually Mark Cuban.)

The one problem with this way of thinking is that it overlooks the fact that all the Trump supporters did was organize a pro-free speech event — they didn’t force the “anti-fascists” (antifa) to show up and start assaulting attendees.

This is the third time in two months something like this has happened in Berkeley. The difference is this time the Right came out in stronger numbers and forced the leftists to flee the scene.

In spite of the humiliating defeat, the Left is fully responsible for the political violence that occurred this weekend.

Remember when there was a huge debate over whether it was OK to punch a Nazi?

During an Inauguration Day riot back in January, white nationalist Richard Spencer was punched in the face by one of the many black-masked anarchists marauding through the streets of Washington D.C.

While most liberals were quick to condemn the property damage done by the antifa, they couldn’t resist the urge to fervently cheer the punching of a Nazi. (RELATED: Trump Is President, And Now The Left Justifies Political Violence)

A week after the punch seen around the internet, Hollywood gave a wild standing ovation when actor David Harbour said at the Screen Actors Guild Awards that those who oppress the “weak and disenfranchised” need a punch in the face. (RELATED: Hollywood Gives Standing Ovation For Punching Political Foes At Awards Show)

The message was loud and clear from America’s entertainers and lefty pundits: it’s OK to punch those you deem to be a “Nazi,” and we’ll cheer it on.

However, the Left’s definition for who constitutes a “Nazi” can extend to anyone who’s right of The New York Times editorial board, which means that pretty much all Trump supporters, conservatives and anyone who gets in the way would be open for “justifiable” assault.

I predicted right after the Spencer punch that many folks who are definitely not Nazis would come under attack in the wake of the cheerful justification of political violence. I was sadly proven right over the last few months.

First there was the February riot at UC-Berkeley when right-wing writer Milo Yiannopoulos tried to give a talk on campus. Police stood down as anarchists started fires, beat people they thought might be Nazis (including a Syrian Muslim who was not attending the Milo speech) and then ransacked the college town’s storefronts.

Milo’s talk was canceled, and leftists cheered the effectiveness of violence. Famous film director Judd Apatow tweeted threateningly that the riot should serve as a warning for all Trump supporters, while the main Berkeley student paper published several columns praising the riot.

One of the pro-riot columnists even implied that Yiannopoulos’s fans should be killed. “Here’s a big fuck you from the descendants of people who survived genocides by killing Nazis and people just like them,” read the level-headed remark from one Nisa Dang. (RELATED: Berkeley Student Paper Publishes Columns PRAISING Anti-Milo Riot)

A month later, conservative scholar Charles Murray and Middlebury College professor Allison Stanger were assaulted by a mob as they tried to leave the Vermont campus after attempting to have a debate. Stanger, who is an anti-Trump liberal, had her hair pulled by the mob, which caused her to suffer a concussion and neck injuries. All for the sin of trying to shield Murray from leftist fury.

The weekend after the Murray attack, violence erupted at Berkeley again at a pro-Trump rally held in the city. This time right-wingers fought back against the charging antifa, which served as a sign that left-wing violence, not dealt with by police, would be handled by those targeted for attacks.

Minor clashes have happened all over the country between black-masked antifa and red-hatted Trump supporters since then. However, none were on the scale of what went down Saturday. (RELATED: Protesters Clash With Trump Supporters At MAGA March In California)

The only conclusion to draw from this chain of events is that it was probably a bad idea to think violence was a good way to show your opposition to Trump. Now that elements of the Right have shown that they have the capability to defend themselves and drive the opposition, the only result of this embrace of violence is the radicalization of the Left’s enemies.

Famed left-wing philosopher Noam Chomsky warned of the consequences if his fellow lefties engage in this “self-destructive” tactic during the debate over punching Nazis. “When we move to the arena of violence, the most brutal guys win – and that’s not us,” Chomsky said.

Unfortunately, it seems the anarchists are learning that lesson far too late.

Their actions at the Inauguration and Berkeley have not driven fear into their political enemies. Those acts have only motivated folks on the Right to spend their weekend brawling with the hated antifa.

The embrace of violence has pretty much turned out to be self-destructive for the Left. All it’s done is to give the Right the justification to use violence as well.

Ann Coulter is set to appear at Berkeley on April 27, likely setting off another round of street battles. Whether antifa flees town again or forces Coulter’s fans to, they’ll still be the losers in the fight.

Because they’re not stopping the spread of “fascism” every time they appear en masse in black masks. They’re just encouraging millions of Americans to hate them with a burning passion.

Follow Scott on Twitter and purchase his new book, “No Campus for White Men,” on Amazon

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