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 Life Lessons September 14, 2006

Steve Truscott
Owner and Master Instructor


Warriors for Peace

Throughout history leaders have chosen to engage in, and lead others into, perilous fights against evil and injustice, often against overwhelming odds. These captains have had to negotiate treacherous shoals at full speed while not allowing their vessels to be swamped by enemies without, or over-turned by zealots aboard. Each had to find a guiding light by which to steer regardless of obstacles or circumstances.
No significant change can be effected by humans without a significant price being paid in advance. This price is often derision, isolation, persecution, assassination, and even warfare. Only leaders with a clear, often monomaniacal, vision can summon up the fortitude necessary to see it through. In the twentieth century alone world-changing Warriors for Peace included:

- President Franklin Roosevelt and Prime Minister Winston Churchill who led the fight against fascism

- President John F. Kennedy and President Ronald Reagan who led the fight against communism

- Mahatma Gandhi, Martin Luther King Jr. and Nelson Mandela who led the fight against apartheid

All of these men suffered ridicule, hardship, and worse, but their strength of purpose gave all equanimity, and some surprisingly happy personal and family lives. Writing about another beacon of freedom and justice, Abraham Lincoln, American poet Carl Sandburg gives us the definition of a Warrior for Peace as one "who holds in his mind the paradox of terrible storm and peace unspeakable and perfect."

The champions of freedom and justice are not just world leaders, but men and women who do the real work of warriors - building a more peaceful world by facing down and fighting enemies fully prepared to stop them or die trying. But to be part of building a more peaceful world these soldiers, police officers, and brave citizens must be part of a system that has high morals, peaceful intent, and perhaps most importantly far-sighted, dedicated leaders. It is both these groups - those who bleed, and those who lead (and especially those who do both) - that can be called Warriors for Peace.

Folks who volunteer to build homes with Habitat for Humanity, the kids who pick up garbage off the beach, and the retired teacher who volunteers to teach adults to read at the local library are all champions for freedom and justice who are living by a guiding light.

I would suggest the Tenets of Taekwondo - Courtesy, Integrity, Perseverance, Self Control, and Indomitable Spirit - can be such a guiding light for students of the martial arts. By simultaneously and relentlessly resisting evil and doing good ordinary people can, and have, changed our world for the better. They are all Warriors for Peace.

Steve Truscott is the Principal of Family Karate and welcomes your comments at (760) 746-0983 or

Family Karate has been strengthening families in North County for over 35 years. Family Karate currently has campuses in Escondido, 4S Ranch, Penasquitos, Solana Beach, and Carmel Valley. Family Karate Instructors teach Life Lessons in many of our public and private elementary schools.

Steve Truscott, the son of missionaries, was raised in India, educated in British schools. His first language was Marathi, the language of west India, his second was Hindi, third was English. Today he is only fluent in English but understands the other two languages. Family Karate has five locations in San Diego County with over 1000 students, 250 in Escondido alone. Respect, Responsibility, Courtesy, Integrity, all are taught first, at Family Karate. Call 746-0983




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