Guardian or Warrior?- When the sheepdog becomes the wolf-Part 1

AikiCast podcast


This is an AikiCast special 3 part segment addressing the difficult and highly charged topic of police brutality, police killing of unarmed citizens, and the standards by which police investigate themselves in use of force incidents. Blaine covers a vast number of topics in this 3 part series which includes busting 3 of the biggest myths surrounding the profession of policing, taking a critical look at several of the most recent killings of unarmed citizens by police officers, discussing the rules under which police officers conduct themselves and discussing how martial arts should be taught and used by law enforcement individuals as a force for good and for saving people, not for doing damage to more people.

Topics covered in the 3 part series includes: the police murders of Freddie Gray, Eric Garner, Dillon Taylor, Oscar Grant, Jonathan Crawford III, Tamir Rice, the tactics utilized by police officers around the country, the myth of the good cop, the myth of police protection, the myth of the danger of policing, Graham V Connor, Warren V District of Columbia, Joseph Lozito and Maksim Gelman, Officers Jesse Kidder, Bron Cruz, Timothy Loehman, Johanes Mehserle, Terrance Howell, and Daniel Pantaleo, the difference between a guardian and a warrior and the myth of the sheepdog protecting the sheep from the wolf.

Show Notes and links:

Law Enforcement Sites




Interesting article regarding Graham Vs Connor that talks about ‘reasonableness’ and how the officer needs to write their reports so as to be sure to explain how ‘reasonable’ they were in their actions.
“Each key is no more or less important than the other, but provide for a foundation of how one can justify “reasonable” force. Your police reports should reflect the reasonableness that you used to determine when force was applied. Your definition of reasonable is all that matters, and SCOTUS has determined that time and time again.” 

Report on Ferguson, Mo. police department by the department of justice. One can gain a sense of the report by reading the chapter titles.

Dillon Taylor shooting video

Eric Garner choking video

Tamir Rice shooting video

John Crawford shooting video

Video of police interrogating John Crawford’s  girlfriend after his death

Freddie Gray videos

Officer Jesse Kidder video

Police Accountability sites:



Reddit forum devoted to police abuse

“The martial arts don’t work on the streets.” I’ve heard this statement by many nationally-recognized defensive tactics trainers throughout my career. I have always found two things quite ironic each time the statement has been made. First, many trainers making such a statement had never worked the streets, and second, every empty-hand technique they taught could be found somewhere in the martial arts.

Article on police unions

Article on police unions

Cops gone wild documentary



Joe Rogan podcast with 11 year Baltimore police veteran



Comments 2

  1. Post

    Hey Jeff, thanks so much for taking time to post such a well thought out comment. Of course, I am always willing to have a discussion with listeners of the show. I appreciate you taking the time to listen and I also appreciate other viewpoints. As I said in the podcast several times, I am not a police officer but have had a fair amount of exposure and experience, as well as research, on the topics and situations law enforcement deals with on a daily basis and, while I am not required to do the job that people like yourself are required to do as an officer, I certainly have my opinions based on my experience and would relish the opportunity to chat with you one on one and possibly even do a future episode with you. I certainly hope you’ll take the time to listen to all 3 episodes as they may give some more perspective. You may, of course, find more things to disagree with and thats ok too:)

    I look forward to hearing from you again! Feel free to email me at blaine@aikicast.com



  2. Good afternoon,
    I simply wanted to say that I have heard about the first 1 1/2 hours of this topic (Warrior or Gurdian) and I have found it very “interesting,” thus far. Honestly, I disagree with many (most?) of your conclusions and opinions so far, although I do agree with the overall preference for the “Guardian” role over the “Warrior” self-perception when it comes to how ofcrs see themselves in our communities. I have been a police officer for over 17 years with Lapd, in patrol, and am very well versed in the public policy and law that form the foundation of my profession (I actually graduated from UCLA law school and passed the bar before becoming an officer, a profession I chose largely because I wanted to do “good” by helping people in their daily lives and can’t stand being behind a desk, ha ha).

    I would honestly love to have an ongoing discussion with you, because I believe (as you hint at throughout the podcast, although a bit dismissively) that there actually is a lot that you do not seem to understand (not trying to be condescending… There’s a lot I wouldn’t understand about being a banker, fighter pilot or psychotherapist if that weren’t my profession, and there is a LOT that the general public doesn’t understand about the role of a police officer in the community) about the actual day to day role and actions of the police, despite your experiences in life and at “the ghetto grocery store.” The life and duties of a police officer are *extremely* different from those of a private citizen trying to be a Good Samaritan in an unfolding situation, or even an employee at a business. Of course that doesn’t mean that I believe police officers are “perfect” or that there have not been life altering and tragic mistakes made in some of the encounters covered in the news, but your comments make it clear that there are some fundamental pieces of information missing in your analyses of these issues.

    Although it may seem premature, I’m actually writing this now, because it is very difficult for me to continue listening to some of the things that you have said so far without responding. I really don’t believe that it’s because I’m “closed” to ideas that are different or conflict with my own. It’s simply that I feel there is so much that you’re missing, not considering or interpreting in a way that is not accurate when it comes to these issues. ( it’s akin to someone saying that 2+2 = 5, and when I want to say that’s it’s 4, the person continues on without pause, implying that I should “open my mind and not be so stubborn or hold to my traditional view that the answer is 4, that my intellectual discomfort is a sign that I’m stuck in “limiting beliefs” and use that as a way to dismiss my disagreement with what is being asserted ).

    Anyway, you seem to be a very intelligent, good and thoughtful person, and I hope to listen to some of your other podcasts ( I happen to believe that meditation, which I practice daily, would be a great tool for the police and is a great practice for everyone in life, regardless of their profession). I also saw that you have episodes on the law of attraction, and I am interested in the philosophies underpinning aikido, an art that I have only a passing knowledge of and never studied.

    Have a wonderful day…I will finish this series when I can (family and 6 month old daughter, so time is in short supply), I just have a hard time listening to someone discuss a topic “one sidedly,” without being to actually have a “discussion” that people would in a normal conversation. (kind of hard to do in a podcast, lol). Now that I have these initial impressions of my chest, I actually already feel more able to “soldier on.” Great discussion, thank you.

    Namaste brother


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