How to Never Let a Gun-Control Leftist Get Away with Taking the Moral High Ground after a Deadly School Massacre Ever Again
“Don’t you care about the dead kids?!”
If you have been following the recent mass murder in Florida, and are someone who publicly engages in debates or discussions in which you voice your belief that God has given all mankind the fundamental right to self-protection (which our Founding Fathers supported by writing the Second Amendment of the US Constitution), you have probably had this phrase lobbed at you like a grenade from members of the regressive left, “Don’t you care about saving children?”
You calmly, and rationally explain to them, “Yes, in fact, I do care about saving children’s lives but I do not believe that passing more gun control legislation will prevent these horrific atrocities.” Odds are, at this point, some of the regressive left have gone full rage mode on you and called you names such as “Monster!” or “Murderer!” They also may stomp their feet and assert that you actually do want children to be murdered in the school (even though you just explained to them that isn’t the case). In short, they take the moral high ground. Their argument basically boils down to this:
Does this sound familiar?
To illustrate this, I want to share a few screenshots I took from an online debate I was having with an acquaintance. It will illustrate quite nicely what I am referring to – NOTE: I have blurred out any identifying information because I do not want to dox this person. I am simply sharing to highlight my point that this type of rhetoric exists.
Here comes the moral high ground...
I’m sure you can spot many flaws in this person’s argumentation however, for the purpose of this article, I want to focus on just one point. This is how to never let them get away with taking the moral high ground ever again – I’m about to give you the argumentative tool to sink their ship forever – here we go! Let’s lay this all out:
This person claims they have compassion for all the dead victims of these listed massacres. In fact, they claim to have the moral high ground - i.e.: "Where is MY compassion?" Bottom line, they empathetically care, you do not. When faced with this, the solution is very simple: inform them that it is in fact their position which is morally evil.
How so? Depriving someone of their ability and right to self-protection is evil. Such a position communicates that those people’s lives expendable. It is condescending and degrading to their autonomy as a free human being. The gun-control leftist has decided to make the decision that works best for someone else's ability to protect themselves. You must stop allowing a gun-control lefties to pretend that their positions are virtuous and moral. They are not. Show them the emperor has no clothes.
How do you do this? When having discussions or arguments, do not allow their claims of moral superiority to go unchallenged.
STOP CEDING THE MORAL HIGH GROUND TO REGRESSIVE, GUN-CONTROL LEFTISTS WHO MAKE THESE ARGUMENTS!
Do not simply explain to them with facts why they are wrong, they don't care. They only care about their own feelings. I am encouraging you to tell them, straight up, in a polite, civil, but firm tone, that their position is morally evil and that if they support their position in full knowledge of the consequences it would cause, they are reprehensible human beings.
As you saw in the photo, this person admits that teenage women, 18-20, who live alone, should not have the ability to own an AR-15 rifle for self-protection. That is evil and authoritarian. Do not allow these regressive leftists, liberals, post-modernists, insert-label-here-disciples to get away with making this argument. Appropriately and civilly accuse them of espousing a morally evil position.
When they lob the grenade of “Don’t you care about dead kids?” at you, tell them that you love those dead children in Florida enough to put aside your own feelings, and rationally evaluate reality and how to actually make things better. Tell them you love those dead kids enough to not make silly emotional appeals that won’t help anyone. Tell them you love the dead kids enough to avoid making appeals to emotion because the issue isn't about you, it's about saving more children. Tell them you are not morally reprehensible enough to make this about your feelings because real children are dying.
Here is a great way to separate true gun-control leftie ideologues from people who are genuinely just ignorant and only know what CNN has told htem. Say this to them point blank, “I believe you want to save children just like I do, because we are both caring people. In light of this, can you love those dead kids enough to put aside your emotions and feelings so we can analyze reality objectively and create some real solutions together?”
If they say “No!” to this, they are not actually looking for solutions. They are a gun-control ideologue. People who say “No” to this are on a personal quest of virtue signaling and moral grandstanding and could not care less about those dead kids. If they say “No” to your question, I would tell them straight up:
“Wow, I can’t believe you said ‘no’ to that. So you admit you are not actually interested in finding solutions? You admit that you do not care about those dead kids enough to put aside your own feelings? I don’t think you care about those dead kids at all, I think you just care about your own feelings and opinions and the attention you receive for them - and that is utterly detestable and wicked."
Say this to them with civility but without remorse. The left and regressive post-modernists call people on the right, conservatives, and anything that doesn’t fit into their worldview, evil, all the time. They constantly take the moral high ground. No more. Take back the moral high ground because YOU HAVE THE HIGH GROUND! They do not. Your position is the one of virtue, theirs is the one of evil.
They are standing in a quicksand while you stand atop a mountain, yet they are bragging about how much higher up they are than you. It isn’t evil for you to say, “Not to be mean brother, but do you know that you are sinking in quicksand?” Pointing out reality is not evil. You can point out reality in a mean way but I wish for you to avoid this as much as possible. Be civil and courteous but be ruthlessly firm and never waver from speaking the truth simply because someone said, “You don’t care about dead kids.”
The real truth is, all the information to debunk these tired gun control arguments exist. They have been expounded upon ad nauseam. They are readily available online. If these regressive lefties were genuinely seeking the truth, they could easily find it. Most are not on a truth quest however, they are on a happiness quest. Consequences be damned.
Make no mistake, the positions espoused in the screenshots seem to be coming from a place of love and compassion, but it is false love and compassion. As I expound upon in my book, Anatomy of a Warrior: The 7 Virtues All Warriors Must Live by to Successfully Protect and Serve, true love comes from a place of selfless care and empathy for another human being paired with rationality so that you can deal with reality.
True love protects someone from evil. How can you protect someone from evil if you are not aware of reality? How can you love someone appropriately and within proper boundaries if you throw away rationality? “I love you with my feelings only” is not love; this is an immature expression of what someone thinks is love. True love requires order and structure – feelings or “empathy” alone, is not enough.
You must have empathy paired with logic. You must love the other person enough to face reality, regardless of how scared, sad, terrified, or uncomfortable it makes you. Why? Because unless you are aware of reality and have the courage to face it, and love people enough to face it, how are you going to be able to help them solve their problems or combat threats? You can’t. Virtue signaling regressive leftists do not love with this love – tell them that. Many of them are not aware of this. They think they are loving and compassionate but they are not. They have been fed a false view of love and think what they are doing and espousing is loving – it isn’t.
When you point out their positions are evil and they may be evil too, you are loving them enough to speak the truth. Hardly anyone else will. I am calling on you to love them enough to tell them the truth. You just might plant a seed that eventually blooms into a beautiful flower of self-awareness and reformation.
If you are utterly tired of regressive leftists moral grandstanding, virtue signaling and unearned moral superiority, please share this article on your social media and send it to friends and family.
Live with virtue my fellow warrior!
Alex Lanshe is a 22 year practitioner of martial arts and sciences, has trained thousands of civilians across the country in self-defense and is the author of 3 books, including his recently released, groundbreaking book on warrior virtue - Anatomy of a Warrior: The 7 Virtues All Warriors Must Live by to Successfully Protect and Serve. The information in this book was acquired by interviewing 120 professional protectors and warriors over a 2 and ½ year period from the military, police, first responders, government agencies and the private sector. Interviewees include: Lt. Col. Dave Grossman (wrote the Foreword), Gavin de Becker (wrote the Afterword), Massad Ayoob, Carrie Lightfoot, Ron McCarthy, Chuck Taylor, Dave “Buck Savage” Smith, Patrick Van Horne, Julie Golob, Rory Miller, and more! The book can be found on Amazon by clicking here.
Visit https://www.alexlanshe.com/anatomy-of-a-warrior.html if you’d like to find out how you can help Alex support injured veterans and get your name listed in the acknowledgements of his upcoming book diving deeper into the virtues and traits of a warrior!
In my pursuit of virtue, I have made a personal discovery that I wish to share with you. It is a subtle trick that the enemy plays on you once you really begin to strive to live a virtuous life and to discover what virtues you should strive for are. This trick leads to the title of the blog, the death of skill. What is this trick?
The enemy attempts to trick you into believing that LEARNING about virtue is all it takes to be virtuous. This is a lie. Virtue is practiced, daily, and can only be earned through being and doing. Tied in with this trick, is the subtle implication that good intentions are all you need. This is false. While studying and learning about virtue is very important, you should put what you learn into practice. Your pursuit of virtue should be progressing you towards the gaining of skill, in some area or another. This belief, that good intentions and learning is all you need, has led, I believe, to the death of skill.
I am defining 'skill' here in a very broad sense. Listening is a skill. Speaking is a skill. Fighting is a skill. Parenting is a skill. Fixing a car is a skill. Treating someone's illness is a skill. A skill, to my mind, is any human activity that produces a desired outcome. Listening well can give you the outcome of understanding someone. Speaking well can give you the outcome of communicating an idea or belief successfully to a person or group of persons. Successfully applying medicine to heal someone leads to the outcome of a healthy person, etc.
Why am I writing this blog? Because I firmly believe that you and I must double-down on practicing virtue to acquire true skills again. Have you noticed that many people in the world seem to lack skills of every kind? I think the death of virtue (i.e.: the culture deliberately casting aside the notion of virtue and it's intentional pursuit) has indirectly led to a culture where fewer and fewer people possess any real skills. Virtue is not simply the realm of the academics, it is the realm of you and I, the common man, to live out and pursue.
As a philosopher by training (I majored in it at University), I am just as guilty as anyone for keeping virtue in the realm of study, thought, and academia but leaving it on the bench when it comes to doing, being, testing, experimenting, and working. I believe that you and I must always remember to put virtue into action. Yes, thinking and philosophizing is important, but it must be in harmony and balance with work and action.
Why is the death of skill something you should be concerned about? Skill, true skill, is your ability to add value to human relationships and enterprise. If you literally have no skills, you will find it very difficult to get a job, or have a loving relationship, or to find anything meaningful to do.
The young people especially have been sold this trick - that good intentions are all you need. It isn't necessary to develop any true skills. To my view, this has created a tremendous number of people who cannot find their way in the world because they have so little to offer. On a potential level, they have a great deal to offer. But on an actual level (a measure of their current skill-sets) they have little to offer. I believe this leads to discontentment, and feelings of purposelessness. Both of which bode ill for the pursuit of virtue and keeping people safe from violence. What does the death of skill have to do with perpetrating violence against another human being? Let me explain:
Gavin de Becker wrote in his iconic work, the Gift of Fear, that one reason someone could resort to violence is when they perceive that they lack any other options of achieving the goal that they want. In fact, a person is much more likely to resort to use violence to achieve a goal precisely when they feel they have exhausted all other options (or that no other options exist). This is why the death of skill is so important - because if you, as the potential user of violence, have other skills of persuasion, reason, communication, influence, or talents and skills or resources to barter for what you want, you will be (in general) less likely to resort to use violence to get what you want.
Please note there are always exceptions to any rule or issue. I am not referring to certain people who commit violence for it's own sake. Some of those people do in fact have other skills but they enjoy being violent anyway. Some people have no goal with their violence other than to enjoy the act of doing it. Gaining other life skills would likely not stop such a person from being violent. But for other people, they commit violence because they see no other choice. No other way to get what they want. And for some of them, they may see the world this way because they either lack the skills to achieve their goal without violence or they perceive themselves to lack the skills necessary to give them options besides violence.
All of these things are tied together intricately - virtue, skill, violence, etc. If you allow and focus on your pursuit of virtue to be philosophical and application-based, that can lead to the acquisition of skill. Courageously apply yourself to become good at something or somethings. Love yourself and your fellow man enough to commit to this. Humbly and honestly admit where you currently stand today to realize where you need to improve. Discern how you can remedy the problem. Have faith that if you diligently apply yourself, you will get better. Take responsibility and control over your behavior and the little actions you take each day to get better.
I believe that the world and marketplace is not a zero sum game. Both have niches that need your skill or future skill. It is plenty big enough for you and everyone else. Be practical, wise and discerning in what skills you pursue and why. But I encourage you to use the virtues of a warrior to pursue a skill. It will bring you much more personal satisfaction that simply relying on your good intentions. Don't believe the trick that good intentions are all you need.
To illustrate my point: Would you rather drive across a bridge that was designed by someone with purely good intentions and no skill, or by someone who had good intentions and the skill to design a sound bridge? Skill matters - go become virtuously skillful.
The Least Addressed Element in All Self-Protection that is Most Critical to Staying Safe from Violence
I have spent 22 years in the martial arts, personal protection, and staying-safe-from-violence world. I’ve seen and heard and trained in A LOT of things. Weapons, tech, gear, tactics, techniques, forms, teaching theories, how to gather information, etc. All good stuff to be sure. However, something is missing from this list. Can see what is missing?
Ok, so a lot of things are missing. But I am thinking of one thing in particular. I was reminded of this thing several nights ago when I was speaking about the 7 virtues of the warrior heart to the Columbus OH, Well Armed Woman Chapter. It was something I said off the cuff in the moment of the talk (thank goodness I have begun recording all my presentations). This missing element that I have seen few trainers or experts address is very simple: meaning.
In order for you to even want to protect yourself in the first place, you must attach meaning to your life. Does your life mean anything? If your answer is “no”, then the next obvious question is, “Why go to any trouble to protect it then?”
When mass murderers like the Columbine killers visit death and destruction on a school, what meaning do you think they believed their lives and the lives of others had? We can’t know this for certain, but studying their lives and how it led them to that point could give us clues or indicators as to what meaning they placed on human life (theirs and others).
In the Western World, we see incidents like Las Vegas or Columbine and we demand answers. “Why did these people or person do this?” “What was the motive?” Motive, many times, flows directly from what meaning you believe a thing has. What meaning you place on things leads directly to another crucial element of human existence: Your identity.
With no meaning, what identity could you have? If all your meaning is bad, is it likely you will have a good identity? An interesting phenomenon of being human is that even if we have a terrible identity and ascribe little meaning to anything, we continue to strive to be consistent: to have our thoughts and ideas match reality and behavior. Let me tell you a story to illustrate this:
A few years ago, I had a neighbor who was a married man with 3 young children. He and his wife seemed to get along well enough and the children seemed well adjusted and successful. By all outside appearances, they were doing well. This neighbor had a skeleton in his past though, alcohol. He had overcome that demon years ago, but he was fond of saying, “If I ever fall of the wagon, I won’t make it.” Most chalked it up to humor or simply a saying people say. However, it was not so. He fell off that wagon one day, and plunged back into alcoholism. After fighting it for a while and not overcoming it, he did what anyone would do if they wanted to be consistent, he took his own life. He had told himself for years that if he ever fell of the wagon he “wouldn’t make it.” If he failed to take his own life and he recovered, he would be a liar. In order to avoid being a liar, he killed himself.
Let me be clear, do I know this was his final, true motivation for killing himself? No. If it was, do I believe he consciously thought, "I really don't want to be a liar so I'd better kill myself"? No. I can never be sure one way or another. But I do find it interesting and submit the story for you to ponder. I find it interesting that he programmed himself for years that he would be unable to succeed at battling alcohol a second time. What meaning do you think he put on his life? How much of that meaning morphed his identity into something that felt he could never overcome alcohol a second time? He had conquered it once; that is evidence that he could conquer it again. But that isn’t how he saw it.
It is my personal opinion that one reason we are seeing the types of extreme violence we are seeing (events like the Vegas massacre) and the increase in suicides, opiate drug use, etc. is because we have raised a generation that has no meaning. This leads some to ask simple, logical questions that eventually lead to devaluing human life and nihilism. If life has no meaning, why protect it? Why value it? How is anything about it sacred? Where do human rights come from and do they even exist if life has no meaning? Many, not finding good answers to these questions, turn to a life of addictions designed to distract and numb them from the fact they don't know or have any objective meaning for their life.
At a foundational level, everyone is a protector. Because everyone is trusted with protecting at least one person - themselves. Some are trusted to protect more people than just themselves, but all of us at least have been given the duty of self-protection. In order to do this task well, it really helps if you believe your life has value and meaning.
The inescapable truth of reality is that your life either has objective, transcendent meaning, or it doesn’t. Your life either matters in some ultimate, significant sense, or it doesn’t. I firmly believe that those who see no meaning to life are more likely to commit self-harm, suicide, or pass on similar beliefs to their friends, children and loved ones.
In the personal protection world, we don’t talk about meaning too often – because it can make people uncomfortable. Many of us spend so much time avoiding finding out whether or not our life has meaning, and if it does, what that meaning is. We are too busy. Facebook needs browsed. Instagram followers need to see what food we are eating. Drugs, alcohol, porn, or some other addiction needs satisfied. We are too busy to figure out if our life has meaning and what it is.
I am writing this blog not to condemn you but to encourage you to look at your own life and ask, “What ultimate meaning do I believe I have?” Do you believe your life actually matters and why? These are the types of things you should be taught as a child by parents or in school. The answers you come up with are not insignificant. They matter a great deal. They especially matter for the warriors and protectors.
For why do you continue to do what you do? Sacrificing your own time and life for the safety of others - if there is no meaning? If there is no objective meaning then the task of warriorship is not praiseworthy or noble – it is simply another thing that exists. In my book, Anatomy of a Warrior, the 6th of the 7 virtues is the virtue of faith. I ask the reader in the book, “Where do you place your faith?” Similarly, I ask you now, “Where do you place your meaning?” Do you have any meaning? Have you ever thought to ask the question? Just as your faith, what meaning you believe life has is of tremendous importance to being a warrior and a protector. Almost all issues, political or otherwise, boil down to a dispute about meaning.
In all your warrior ways, do not neglect to discover your true meaning. Train hard, get better gear, clean your weapons, study the tactics of great warriors who went before you, but don’t forget to ask yourself the big questions either. What is your meaning, why do you believe that, and how do you know your life has any meaning? Why did you choose to become a protector at all? Why do you keep doing it? What does it all mean?All good questions that we must not forget to ask. Your life and the lives of others ultimately rest with your core beliefs on meaning – for what you think things mean determines your behavior and your behavior determines the outcomes of real world events with real consequences for real people.
Live with virtue!
Let me share with you a personal story of something I have been struggling with for some time now:
I have been struggling with the notion of "sales", "discounts", "promotions" and other such business terms for some time now. As a young business owner, I have been told that you must do and offer such things - especially on Black Friday.
"Alex, you gotta run sales, provide discounts, and offer special, limited-time promotions." This was the advice I received by many people in business. Men and women who to this very day, I respect to a large degree. When I was younger, I took their advice and did these things. But the longer I have been in business, the more I have started to ask one simple question, "Why?"
Why must I do these things? What does doing these things achieve? The obvious answer is that you must do them to make sales - to get people to give you money. Ok. So if my goal is to get money, is that the best way to go about doing it? The answer I have come to discover is, it depends on what your goal is.
Simon Sinek, in his iconic book, Start with Why, talks about this very thing. When I re-read his book recently, I thought he was speaking directly to me. He discussed how all these things - sales, promotions, discounts, etc. - are, at the end of the day, manipulations to get people to give you money. Tactics to separate someone from their green stuff. He described about how these tactics do work (i.e.: they get people to give you their green stuff) but they are short term goals that cannot provide sustainable results. So if your goal is short term sales, these tactics work great. If however, your goal is to achieve long lasting loyalty, these tactics stink. I used to do things like offer sales and discounts on my services - no more.
From now on, I am going to be doing business another way: believing in and sticking to setting a real price for a real and reasonably valued product or service. If I agree to do a seminar for you for $100.00 because we negotiated that price, then that is fine. I'm always open to negotiation. But I'm not going to "discount" something for you. I am no longer going to attempt to bribe you with deals, discounts, tokens, promotions etc. I am no longer going to insult your intelligence with such an obvious method of trying to separate you from your cold hard cash.
Why will I no longer be offering discounts, deals, promotions, sales, etc.? Many reasons. Let me explain:
1) I feel like shit when I do it. I feel it insults your intelligence and it makes me feel like shit. I feel like I am manipulating you for money, even though I don't even have a clue or a care as to whether or not you can benefit from, want or need what I have to offer or sell. Until I re-read Simon Sinek's Start with Why, I could never figure out why offering deals and discounts made me feel so badly. I do now.
I recently had this discussion with my friend, Ted, on his show, Social Selling TV. We talked about being authentic and sticking to your core values and then doing business with people who believe what you believe. Simon Sinek speaks of the same thing in Start with Why.
My friend whom I greatly respect, Dr. David Phelps, has created a tremendous business and community with his Freedom Founders Group. I asked him how he created such a large and consistent support group - they are actually friends at Freedom Founders, not just business associates. How did he do it? Dr. Phelps told me that it was by building the business slowly and by sticking to his core values. He told me, "You will be very tempted to take short cuts to make quick sales and to make money fast - avoid this at all costs." I had a great time talking with him about this on his show, the Freedom Blueprint Podcast.
Sinek captures why I had this feeling perfectly on page 34 of his book. I didn’t realize this consciously until reading his book: "With every price drop, promotion, fear-based or aspirational message and novelty we use to achieve our goals, we find our companies, our organizations and our systems getting and weaker." "With perfect irony, we, the manipulators, have been manipulated by our own system."
Wow. I now understand why all these things always made me feel like shit - none of it communicates true love or care for you nor myself. None of it breeds trust. When I offer you these manipulations, I don't even like or trust myself so how could you? When I use these manipulations against you, I feel non-authentic because I now that are just that, manipulations.
2) I hate being manipulated in this way.
I don’t know why it took me so long to figure this out, but if I don’t enjoy when a business manipulates me in these ways, why would I perpetuate the very things I hate? Why would I assume that you won’t mind it when I hate it? Maybe you don’t care, but I shouldn’t assume that.
3) Manipulations or freebies do not cause you or I to value the work or product.
I used to complain when people would ask me for freebies. If you're a business owner, someone has asked you for free products or services. I know people have asked me. I used to get mad at people who did this - but now I realize they were only doing what I gave them permission to do. It is my fault. I would capitulate and give freebies, run promotions, etc. No more.
Let me be clear, if you want to negotiate something, I am all ears. A negotiation involves both parties trying to add value to each other and come to the most satisfactory conclusion for both sides. A negotiation is not, "I can't pay so give me free shit." Sorry, move along.
On the flip side, it is not a negotiation if I try to bribe you with "Black Friday Deals" to get you to buy my book or services. That is me trying to manipulate money out of your pocket. I am done doing that.
I want to tell you a story that a speaker mentor and friend told to me a long time ago. When this friend was a young speaker starting out in the business, he knew he wanted to write a book. He found out about a man named Dan Poynter who taught people how to self-publish a book. My friend wanted to take his course but, being a young man, didn't have the money. He told this to Dan Poynter when he saw him at a live event. He was about to ask Dan if he could join his course for free when Dan stopped him mid-sentence and said, "Well then I guess you don't want it badly enough." And he then turned and walked away.
I used to think this was cruel for Dan Poynter to have done to my friend - I no longer believe this. Dan denying him and cutting him off mid-sentence motivated my friend to save his money and invest in the course. He then had more reason to value the knowledge Dan gave him. My friend went on to self-publish many books using the knowledge he learned from Dan's course. Would my friend have valued the course as much if Dan had given it to him for free? No.
You have experienced this as a teen or as a parent of a teen very profoundly: How does a teenager treat a car they had to buy (or at least partially buy) compared to someone who was given the car for free? The treatment is not even close.
Similarly, if I use these fancy manipulations to get your money, I don't value my own work or product. You don't value it either. Tell me if you can relate - the customers or clients who have given you the biggest hassles are the ones who get freebies, deals, discounts, or took advantage of promotions? Is this your experience? Let me know in the comments or shoot me an email at email@example.com. I know this has been my experience. Friends who I gave free or discounted items to were always the ones who gave me the hardest time.
In conclusion, I will no longer be engaging in these types of manipulations to get your money. They make me feel bad, they insult your intelligence, and they cause a devastating loss of value in your perception and in my perception. I don't respect myself when I offer these manipulations and if I do not respect myself, how can you respect me?
I am going to continue putting out free content and I will be doing exclusive content for paid members and patrons. Those who believe what I believe and wish to benefit from what I am doing will become paid members and contribute, even if just $1.00/month, to receive all the videos, blogs and interviews I do in the future. Those who wish to stick with the free blog posts, that’s ok too. People who don’t want to follow me at all, I wish you well.
My book, Anatomy of a Warrior, is $19.99 on Amazon. The eBook is $7.99. Those are fair prices for a book that involved 2.5 years of work, and required me to interview 120 people. I believe those prices to be fair and sufficient. I am not going to “discount” the book for Black Friday, nor am I going to tease you with “THIS IS THE CHEAPEST YOU CAN EVER GET MY BOOK!” I now respect myself too much for that and I respect you too much for that.
If you have the appropriate funds and believe that buying it and reading it would be a good thing for you, then by all means, get your copy. If you think a friend or group of friends would benefit from it and they can afford the price, by all means, I desire you to share it with those friends. If you lack the resources or do not believe it would be helpful, 3 choices remain: Do not buy it ever, save up the money and then buy it or, negotiate. Make ME an offer - don't ask for free stuff. Because the answer from now on, will be "You must not want it badly enough."
What will I be doing instead? How do I plan on surviving and making my business thrive without doing these manipulations? That will described in detail in Part II of this blog series which will be released soon! If you've read Simon Sinek's book, Start with Why, you know the answer lies within the Golden Circle...
Today on The Anatomy of a Warrior Show, I interview my good friend and home invasion survivor, Liz Lazarus.
Liz was interviewed for my latest book, Anatomy of a Warrior, and we have become friends since our first interview. I am delighted to have her on the show this week to tell her powerful story of survival.
Liz was just a 20 year old college student when her apartment was broken into by a home invader looking for a victim to rape. On this episode, Liz and I discuss:
You can find more about Liz and her books at:
If you enjoyed this episode, please:
The Anatomy of a Warrior Show - E006 - Interview with Kimberly Ostrowski, a Woman Who Escaped the Same Cult as I Did - We Share Her Personal Story and How She Helped Me to Escape
On today's episode of The Anatomy of a Warrior Show, I interview my good friend and fellow warrior, Kimberly Ostrowski.
Kimberly has an amazing story to share with you on this episode. She was a member of the same cult as I was and in fact, was even closer to the cult leader than I was - serving as a behind-the-scenes staff member. Her courage to stand for the truth in the face of pure evil is inspiring and is why I wanted to have her on the show.
Kim was instrumental to me seeing the truth about the cult leader and extricating myself from it. We discuss how and why in the interview.
In addition to Kim's story about being in the cult, we discuss some other great topics:
Kim is a homeschooling mom of four and the current owner and operator of Resolute Warrior Academy and the new director of the Washidokan Martial Science Dojo in Sandusky, MI. She also helps her husband run their construction business. She started training in martial sciences in the fall of 2011 and went through intense training for three years, earning her Shidoin and Jokyo license. Kim has started up a new program, Break Free, a women's personal protection course which will focus on awareness and prevention training that will also be applicable to daily life. Kim wants to help women Break Free from the mindsets and negative habits that keep them from fulfilling their purpose and from protecting themselves.
You can contact Kim at:
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The Anatomy of a Warrior Show - E005 - Interview with Information Warfare Expert and Professor at the National Defense College, Dr. Howard Gambrill Clark
Welcome to our HALLOWEEN SPECIAL!
This week's interview was with a very special guest who is committed to protecting and preserving life. Let me introduce you to Dr. Howard Gambrill Clark.
Dr. Howard Gambrill Clark has served in counterterrorism and countering violent extremism over the past two decades to include service in the White House, Marines (Iraq, Afghanistan, and the Philippines), Homeland Security, Special Operations Command, and now at the National Defense College and Stability Institute. His latest book is Information Warfare: The Lost Tradecraft.
In this episode of The Anatomy of a Warrior Show, we talk about A LOT of cool things such as:
- Dr. Clark's new book and how knowing about Information Warfare can help to keep you safe in your every day life
- Personal Protection lessons we can learn from films such as The Dark Knight, and Inception! (Plus a Clint Eastwood movie that neither of us could remember - bonus points for you if you email me and tell me the name of the Clint Eastwood movie!)
- How virtue and information warfare fit together
- The value of the 7 warrior virtues in regards to counterterrorism
- How studying Information Warfare can help you to become immune from fake news and media spin
Don't forget to check out the blooper that happened during filming! (Technology is nice when it cooperates).
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On today's show, please welcome special guest and the first person to be interviewed on The Anatomy of a Warrior Show, my good friend, Anni Keffer!
Bio: Anni Keffer is a nationally recognized Author, Youth Leadership Speaker, Entrepreneur and Founder of the Young Women of Influence Conference. She has been seen in CBS, ABC, NBC, FOX affiliates and in a number of publications, including the New York Business Journal, Pittsburgh Post- Gazette, Miami Herald, Chicago Business Journal, WHIRL, San Francisco Chronicle, MompreneurMedia and others. She is the Author of Leadership Built On Why and a Co-Author of Girls Lead. Anni was nominated for WHIRL Magazine’s Women In Business 2016.
In this episode we discuss:
If you are a millennial or you have a loved one who is a millennial or youth, please go see if Anni's book, Leadership Built on Why, is right for you and your loved one. You can order your copies by visiting:
The book will also be available on Amazon soon! Links will be added when it releases.
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The Anatomy of a Warrior Show - Episode 003 - Blog - 3 Virtue Lessons You Can Learn from "The Last Samurai"
My newest book, Anatomy of a Warrior, launches on November 11th, Veterans Day!
As you can imagine, there are a great many details to attend to between now and then in preparation for the launch. Nearly 3 years of behind-the-scenes work is nearing completion.
Despite all this work, I am a firm believer in re-charging and re-energizing. Last night, I did that by watching one of my all-time favorite movies - The Last Samurai (TLS). I have always liked this movie but this was the first time I had watched it since I began researching the virtues of a warrior. I viewed the film for the first time through a much deeper lens of understanding what virtues a warrior must live by. Viewing it through this new lens, I love the movie even more now and let me tell you why.
1. The glue that holds all virtue together is temperance.
Watching TLS made me realize on a deeper level just how important self-control and temperance are for a warrior. All virtue and the pursuit thereof must be controlled. As I get older and experience more of life, I am discovering just how important self-control is. We may call this discipline. The samurai in TLS were polished, dedicated, and committed. Tom Cruise's character says at one part, "I have never seen such discipline." Commenting in other place, he says, "From the moment they rise each morning, they dedicate themselves to the perfection of the work they pursue."
This discipline is highly underrated in today's culture. In our world of instant gratification, discipline is becoming a forgotten word - who needs discipline when you can have everything right now?
Watching TLS made me think about the discipline that was required to write my book and how many times I failed to do what I should have due to lack of discipline. It is a sobering thought. Are you lacking discipline? Could you stand to improve in the area of self-control? Join the club.
The importance of self-control cannot be overstated. I challenge you to take intentional control of all aspects of your life: your thoughts, emotions, behaviors, and habits. Remember, what you believe determines all else. If you believe you are not in control of yourself (by "self" I mean the full gamut of your experience as a human being - emotions, thoughts, desires, dreams, behaviors, actions, in-actions, decisions, etc.) then you will act like you are not in control of yourself.
Viewing TLS this time around I saw the stark contrast between such a warrior society and the society at large in our beloved USA. In TLS, the people were disciplined in their duty to their families, country and superiors. Not many excuses were given for poor behavior or breach of manners. I do not wish to imply that we in the USA should practice ritual suicide (as a Christian, I cannot support such a thing) however, there are many lessons we could learn from their staunch discipline. Watch TLS and look at the discipline of the samurai.
2. Humility needed a stronger emphasis.
In TLS, we see how samurai would commit ritual suicide when they could not bear the shame of defeat. This ultimately stems from a place of pride, i.e.: "MY shame is too great; I cannot bear it! Therefore, I will honor myself by committing ritual suicide!" (harakiri). This should teach you a lesson about guarding against pride - it can lead you to do self-destructive things, even ritual suicide.
If you take the discipline shown by the samurai and pair it with the appropriate dose of humility, you will become a truly powerful person. Discipline will ensure that you take the actions necessary to do your duty and humility will prevent you from self-destruction due to excessive pride and self-love. For me, this lesson is an important one.
No matter how successful or unsuccessful my new book becomes, I must be disciplined in living out its virtues and humble enough to keep an accurate view of reality before my eyes. Pride can also be said to be a refusal to appraise reality correctly. For what is pride if not excess? Excess does not equal reality. The reality of who you are, your importance, etc. must always be measured and seen through the lens of reality. Refusing to admit reality is pride - because you want to see reality YOUR way! A warrior cannot afford to live with this pride! Real human lives hang in the balance, and only by admitting reality is what it is can you effectively protect them from violence. This requires perpetual humility - to view reality as it is.
3. To control the mind, subdue the body.
I was struck while watching TLS how the men would condition and discipline themselves to train. They didn't exactly go light either. In one particular seen with Tom Cruise and Ujio, they are sparring with wooden swords in the rain. Cruise is injured from previous battles at this point so he is utterly unable to defend himself against the superiorly trained Ujio. Though Ujio does not kill Cruise, he deals him a serious of powerful blows to the face, back, legs and shoulders. All of those hits would warrant and immediate stoppage of training in modern day Dojo. I am not saying that you should hit this hard with wooden weapons at your Dojo, but the contrast between the conditioning of then to now is striking (no pun intended).
The samurai knew that in order to control the mind, you must subdue the body. One element that several interviewees mentioned was that the body was must forged and honed. Your body is the vehicle to deliver and achieve your purpose in. Health and conditioning matter. Watching TLS, I was confronted with my own lack of proper focus on health, conditioning, and fitness. All of these things matter in a fight and in the protection of others from violence. Everyone wants the magic technique or weapon that will do all the work for them, but you and I both know that this doesn't exist. I re-discovered that I needed to rededicate myself to mastering my mind by conquering my body. Do you need to improve your fitness and health? No one can do it for you. Do not lie to yourself and say that this doesn't matter - it does matter.
BONUS - #4:
In our modern culture, "love" has been made into a fleeting feeling. A mere whim that comes and goes which is purely outside our control. TLS reminded me that true love is disciplined. If you love others, you discipline yourself to master your body, to take control of your emotions, to take your thoughts captive to your will. Why? Because it matters in the quest to give life or take life. Everything you do has a net effect towards life preserving or life destroying. Don't believe me? Your inability to control your emotions adds stress to the lives of all those around you. Ironically, this usually means that those you "love" the most are the most affected. If you allow yourself to be unhealthy, lazy, and undisciplined, then those around you must cover for you and pick up your slack. This adds more stress to their already stressful life which is life destroying.
I had never really felt and understood the truth of this until rewatching TLS. Look at how their lives of discipline allowed others to thrive and do their duties. Contrast that with our current, American culture. I challenge you to create the samurai type discipline in your life and with your family. Remember, love is not a feeling. Conducting yourself with discipline is the evidence of true love. If this convicts you, join the club of the convicted. No use wallowing about it, time to get to work and get busy.
"Life in every breath." Katsumoto says this is the meaning of Bushido - the way of the warrior. It takes discipline to live this way. But oh what a life! I'm rededicating myself to the path of discipline today and I challenge you to do the same!
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Live with virtue!
Photo courtesy of: http://www.gaiahealthblog.com/dinner-and-a-movie-the-last-samurai/
The Anatomy of a Warrior Show - Episode 002 - The Meaning of the "Anatomy of a Warrior" Title and Logo
In Episode 2 of The Anatomy of a Warrior Show, you will discover:
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Live with virtue!
Welcome to the Anatomy of a Warrior Blog!
National Speaker, author, blogger, and life-long student of warrior arts and science.