She Was Asking For It

The Coconut Chronicles

“Don’t present yourself as a victim.”

Those are the words we used to tell the students who came to women’s self defense classes at our Karate dojo. I was one of the instructors, I felt good about what I was doing. Some of the women who took these short courses had been raped or assaulted; others knew women who had suffered the same. They were all afraid. They all wanted to learn how to be a little less defenseless against men who would harm them.

We taught these women simple moves to escape from an attacker. We taught them how to break out of wrist and throat grabs. We taught them to shout NO! We taught them to walk with their head high, look confident, and watch their surroundings – predators look for weakness. But the best lesson we taught may have been that if they found themselves in a…

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