Banning Julien Blanc: NIMBYism on a global scale

I feel Julien Blanc is a loathsome, repulsive person. I feel that the tactics he employs are designed to subtly dominate people by invading their personal boundaries and psychologically overwhelming them to prevent a decisive rejection, treating people as commodities instead of humans. I feel the world would be better off without men like him who interact with women primarily to obtain sexual favours.

My feelings are also utterly irrelevant, because banning Julien Blanc undermines freedom of speech and movement.

Activists and social justice warriors are accusing Blanc of promoting violence against women. Assuming this is true, why ban him from travelling to different countries? A person of his dubious stature would still be able to travel to countries whose governments care more about tourist dollars than women’s rights, and the prevalence of information communications technology means that Blanc and his fellow travellers can still continue to propagate their doctrine. The techniques and technology available to Blanc and his ilk are no different from those employed by international lecturers and thinkers, SJWs, local celebrities breaking out into the world stage, and terrorists.

Banning Blanc does not only send the message that he is not welcome in a country, it also signals that the people of that country do not want to have to deal with him — they want someone else to do it. This is Not In My Backyard syndrome.

The court of public opinion has charged Blanc with misogyny, and produced as evidence his infamous choke opener. The photograph shows Blanc placing his hand on a woman’s throat, which he calls ‘choking’.

I have seen Blanc’s lectures and I have heard him speak. I noticed he used techniques commonly employed by public speakers and debaters. He promotes repeating memorised phrases at high speed, deluging the listener in a barrage of words to shut off rational thought and resistance while promising fun and pleasure. The choke opener is an extension of this: he begins a conversation with a woman, then places his hand on her throat to physically dominate her and force her to pay attention to what he is saying. The use of hand gestures, like a finger over his lips or a hand covering her mouth, is an extension of this.

Blanc calls it a choke opener, and activists call it choking. I am a martial artist, and I study combatives. I train in Pekiti Tirsia Kali, I have undergone some training in Krav Maga, and I am in contact with karateka, boxers, judoka, grapplers, and force professionals. Going by that picture alone, I sense Blanc isn’t actually choking her.

Let’s break it down, starting with Blanc’s motivations. I think it’s safe to say the following: Blanc wants interaction. He wants to elicit consent from the woman. He wants her to feel she can’t say no. He does not want her to start screaming for help or to attract unwanted attention. He does not want to be arrested and sent to jail. He does not want to be branded a sex offender, both for professional and personal reasons. The choke opener lies in that murky ground between assertiveness and violence, creating psychological dominance without actually harming the target.

A real choke, on the other hand, does two things: it closes off the airway and it defends the choker from a counterattack. The choke opener superficially resembles a front choke — only, it likely doesn’t actually do damage.

Place one hand on your throat and squeeze. It should feel uncomfortable. Sink into the moment, and imagine that a complete stranger was doing that to you. Feel the pulse in your neck, the pressure against your veins and windpipe. This produces a heightened state of awareness, and enhances a feeling of vulnerability. Now, maintaining that pressure, talk. Say something, anything, just talk.

If you can talk, you can breathe, and if you can breathe, you are not being choked.

Blanc wants the woman to be able to say ‘Yes’. This is domination, not violence. Violence harms the mark, dominance simply attempts to manipulate the target into surrender. Dominance can be countered with assertiveness or violence; the only answer to imminent violence is escape or even greater violence.

real front choke is completely different. Both arms and hands would be locked up straight and tight to provide maximum stability and biomechanical strength. The choker would be pressing the intended victim up against a wall or hard surface, arching the back to break the balance and prevent a counterattack. The choker would be leaning into the victim, applying his body weight and borrowing gravity. A real front choke will close off the airway, induce a panic response, and can leave bruises on the throat. The last can be used against Blanc in court, which he probably does not want, so it is not likely he is actually choking the woman.

Blanc calls this technique a ‘choke opener’ because he needs a dramatic, memorable name for that particular technique. It is linked to the idea of a can opener, comparing the act of opening up a can to opening up a woman. In this sense he is no different from a salesman-entrepeneur naming a product by metaphorically linking it to a commonplace item. Activists have seized on the very unfortunate name to turn it against him, using it to springboard their narrative of violence and generate outrage. Blanc’s propensity for aggrandisation got him into trouble — not actual or intended violence.

But assuming Blanc actually escalated to violence, front chokes are also very easy to break out of. Going back to the picture, Blanc only has one hand on the victim. Assuming some aggressor tries something similar, the defender need merely grab his thumb with both hands and peel back. Normally the technique requires bending the aggressor’s arm for leverage, but he has very thoughtfully done so already. This technique would break the choke and expose him to follow-up strikes.

Against a true double-handed choke, the defender should step back to stabilise herself, then circle her arms under the aggressor’s and shoot her palms through the empty space between his arms, going for his face. This has a high chance of breaking the choke. Even if it doesn’t, the attacker is likely to step back, weakening the choke, or release his hands to defend his face. If he does neither, the palms will strike, causing damage. If the attack rakes the eyes, this induces pain and blindness, encouraging him to let go. If the attack misses or he still insists on holding on, the defender can bring her hands back to his thumbs and peel them off. Or grab the back of his skull and introduce his face to a sharply rising knee.

For armed defenders, the counter is even simpler. Draw a knife and cut the biceps and inner forearms. If he holds on, back cut at the eye to force him to step back, bring his hands back and diminish his vision; stab through the armpits and ribs to collapse the lungs; and/or cut his throat to force blood down the windpipe and air into his heart. Or just draw a gun and shoot him until he drops. This is a lethal force situation, and crippling or killing an attacker is justifiable here.

If Blanc were promoting violence against women, he’s pretty inept about it, relying on his targets to be untrained and unarmed, and unwilling to defend themselves. On the other hand, I don’t see very many SJWs and feminists teaching women how to protect themselves against monsters in human skin. It seems to me that modern-day activists aren’t interested in actually dealing with threats or empowering people to handle them; they just want someone else to do it.

Even if I’m wrong and Blanc actually advocated physically harming women and has sexually assaulted them, banning him from various countries still won’t do any good. He is still free and still able to hurt people in his home country and wherever else would have him. To protect society from such a menace, the best approach is to arrest him and try him in a court of law, and if found guilty, punish him to the fullest extent of the law. This removes a threat from society and sends a message to other would-be predators that society does not tolerate such villainy.

Conversely, if he were found innocent, it means that he is guilty of nothing more than hurting feelings.

I know people who have lived in places where there is no law and no police presence. For people like them, a sexual assault is met with violence: either the woman will kill the attacker during the act (see what I wrote above?), or her friends and family will find and lynch the attacker after the assault. This serves the same purpose of destroying a threat and sending a message to other monsters. The main difference is that they step up and take responsibility of the problem, instead of delegating it to someone else like most civilised people.

The people who want to ban Blanc are not interested in actually dealing with the problem. They just do not want him in their backyard. This is NIMBYism on a global scale, sparked by little more than hurt feelings.

Blanc’s speech may be offensive, but the solution to offensive speech is more speech. His ideas have roundly criticised by people around the world, which means people are less likely to believe him. Or else just ignore him, denying him the fame he needs to continue his lifestyle. To curtail his ability to travel on the basis of offensive speech is to seize the tools of oppression on the basis of hurt feelings, punishing someone for saying the wrong things as opposed to actually harming someone. This sets a powerful precedent: if an international network of people can degrade someone’s freedoms for nothing more than saying politically incorrect words and hurting their feelings, who will they target next?

The answer: anybody else who disagrees with them and hurts their feelings.

People who use their freedom of speech to accuse someone of oppressing a designated victim group and take away his rights are not interested in freedom or protecting people. They just want to be the ones holding the whip.

12 thoughts on “Banning Julien Blanc: NIMBYism on a global scale

  1. It does not matter whether it a blood choke, air choke, arm triangle, read naked choke or front choke. It does not matter. As long as a woman is compelled to have any sort of sexual activity with a man by virtue of any force or perceived THREAT of force, what you euphemistically referred to as “domination”), it is rape.

    So what we are banning, in essence, is a seminar on how to rape women (which might be a crime itself). To me, that ranks up there with seminars on how to kill infidels through the manufacture of home-made explosives. If you want a less radical example, how about the KKK coming to Singapore to preach white supremacy? You would do well to notice that the USA, the bastion civil rights (I kid, only on paper) as seen fit to outlaw that organisation because black people were being subjected to violence. As such, I do not begrudge this curtailment of his freedom to enter Singapore to encourage the commission of sex crimes against our women. I cannot understand how you see otherwise.

    • It’s clear you have missed the difference between a proper choke and Blanc’s deeds. The former is the use of force. The latter is a pyschological trick. The difference, which I have explained and you have missed, is that the choke opener does not harm the victim.

      If you need an analogy, consider the case of a salesman using high-pressure tactics. He overwhelms the client with verbiage and repeatedly touches him. Blanc is using a variation of this, touching the neck and leaving it there. Calling the choke opener a choke is akin to calling high pressure sales tactics robbery. The latter is not a crime; why, then, is the former a crime?

      You have conflated psychological pressure with actual violence. It’s a common tactic used by SJWs to push their agenda.

      If Blanc has truly assaulted women, or promoted actual violence against women, the appropriate way to handle him is through the courts, complete with a trial and evidence. By seeking sanctions outside the court, the rule of law is undermined, opening the way to mob rule and demagoguery. But that’s exactly what ideologues want.

      It is not about the man. It is about principles.

  2. My point is this: rape is sexual intercourse without consent. Even if a woman does not object to sex and even agrees to it, it does not constitute consent under the law IF the man procures it by force or threat of force.

    Real choking, fake choking or even pretending to choke a woman without touching her all falls under force or threat of force, meaning any “consent” by the woman thereafter is negated. By extension, it is rape.

    I am not talking about the normal vanilla flavour violence and I am not talking about whether the woman will/will not be physically harmed. I am talking about sexual violence which INCLUDES using psychological methods and the inducement of fear to compel a woman to have sex. That is rape.

    • You are veering into straw man territory. We are not in dispute about the nature of rape. What we are disputing is whether Blanc actually raped anybody, because there is no actual evidence of rape or sexual assault. Accusations, cropped photos and stills from videos do not count — show me rape kits, DNA marks, testimonials, surveillance footage, expert medical examiners, actual proof that Blanc actually harmed women instead of talking them into sleeping with him through underhanded means.

      Once more: if Blanc or any other individual used force to coerce a woman into having sex with him, that is rape and should be punished under the law. As I have broken down in my article, it is unlikely that Blanc’s controversial choke opener qualifies as criminal use of force. Merely touching someone is not assault. Merely leaving one’s hand on someone is, again, not assault. it is a violation of social norms in this country but it is NOT a violation of the law. To claim otherwise is to speak against the sun.

      Choking someone is lethal force, but the onus is on the prosecution and the accusers to demonstrate that the choke opener and similar techniques demonstrably lead to injuries similar to a choke and that Blanc and his fellow travellers have injured women and/or coerced them into sex. As I have broken down in my piece, the evidence I have access to does not demonstrate that choke opener actually harms the victim. At worst, it makes her uncomfortable. Making someone feel uncomfortable is not a crime, except in the minds of people who wish to impose their will on everybody else.

      To claim that psychological methods is tantamount to rape is again to claim that high-pressure sales tactics the manner I have described is akin to robbery. Hurt feelings and discomfort do NOT qualify as harm, not in this case, because they cannot be objectively proven and they have not led to injuries physical, emotional or mental. Merely inducing a feeling of fear or vulnerability is insufficient, because these emotions are fleeting and therefore cannot be proven in court, because different people will have different reactions to psychological tactics, and because there is no proof of harm. If you will not push for the criminalisation of high-pressure sales tactics, you cannot claim that using mind tricks to obtain consent is rape. Because you have not yet proven through rational argument that the choke opener is criminal violence, your spiel on rape is invalid in the eyes of the law. Ergo, you have advocated punishing a human being for the audacity of saying things that make you feel uncomfortable. Today it is a sleazy womaniser — who will it be tomorrow?

      If you still insist that Blanc and his ilk are rapists, then, once again, why are you content with stripping his right to travel? That is NIMBYism as I have written about. Convict him or deal with him yourself. Eroding his right to travel does not one thing about the real problem, unless your true goal is simply to feel good about yourself.

  3. “What we are disputing is whether Blanc actually raped anybody”

    Fact check. I never once stated that Blanc raped anyone. I likened his seminar to one which teaches men on how to coerce women into having sex, by using force or the threat of force to compel them into having sex. Last I read, that is rape. So no, I did not say Blanc is a rapist, I am saying his teachings condone or at least encourage rape and/or sexual violence.

    “the evidence I have access to does not demonstrate that choke opener actually harms the victim. At worst, it makes her uncomfortable.”

    If the psychological discomfort, or the fear of being hurt by choking, is used to procure sexual intercourse, that is rape.

    “Merely inducing a feeling of fear or vulnerability is insufficient”

    Doing so to procure sexual intercourse is rape.

    “If you will not push for the criminalisation of high-pressure sales tactics, you cannot claim that using mind tricks to obtain consent is rape.”

    Did you by any chance read about the Jover Chew fiasco a couple of weeks back? Why did you think he was arrested?

    Again, don’t try to cloak the concept of rape with silly words like “mind tricks”. For the umpteenth time, if anyone who (a) applies force on a woman by choking or pretending to choke her to coerce her into having sex; or (b) puts her in a state of fear of getting hurt by choking or pretending to choke her and thus procures sex from her will be committing rape. And that is precisely one of the things Blanc is teaching.

    It is rather disturbing to witness your rather misguided notions on what constitutes rape. Your emphasis that “hurt feelings”, “discomfort”, “inducing a feeling of fear and vulnerability” and “no proof of harm” are all things that cannot be proven in court and therefore obtaining consent for sex by those methods is acceptable and legal is very telling as to what sort of person you are. Incidentally, inducing fear or apprehension in a person is an element that can be tested in court, and procuring sex in that fashion is rape.

    I will said all I have to say in relation to this issue. Have a good life.

    • Fair enough. So allow me to amend my statement to say: What we are disputing is whether Blanc taught people how to rape, because there is STILL no evidence that there is violence and you have provided none. I have analysed his technique and put them into context; you have asserted they produce fear but you have not adequately argued for that position.

      In particular, you said, “If the psychological discomfort, or the fear of being hurt by choking, is used to procure sexual intercourse, that is rape.”

      Not quite. Psychological discomfort is not criminal intimidation or use of force. Again, if hard selling is neither robbery nor fraud then psychological dominance cannot be rape. Be consistent.
      As for ‘fear of being hurt by choking’, that is the legal standard. The issue in doubt is whether there is a real fear of being hurt in the eyes of a reasonable person. Placing a hand on a non-eroticised part of the body is not assault, sexual or otherwise. Was he holding her so tightly that he left marks behind? Did he close off her airway? Did he say anything threatening? Did he produce a weapon? Did he leave no reasonable doubt that he truly wanted to hurt her? The answers as I have seen is no to all.

      Inducing fear or vulnerability to procure sexual intercourse is not rape, IF there is no evidence that the perpetrator was doing something that could be seen as proof that he wanted to harm her. If he didn’t produce a weapon, cock his fist in a threatening manner, didn’t shout at her, didn’t grip so tightly she couldn’t breathe, how does one prove apprehension or fear in a court of law? Conversely, if there were evidence — again, charge him in court, don’t bother banning him from travelling here. You seem to have missed this part. One cannot simply say ‘these can be tested in court’ and be done with it: put up the evidence or set down your accusations.

      Yes, I have read about Jover Chew. As far as I can tell he cannot be charged because the criminal code holds no provisions for his unethical business dealings. The only conclusion I can draw from this is that the police have finally unearthed something clearly illegal and are preparing to charge him in court, or that they made a big show out of arresting him to appease the public. To date I have found nothing about criminal charges against him, so you can imagine which interpretation I favour.

      I have maintained the stance that Blanc is a despicable individual because of the tactics he uses. These techniques are legal until proven otherwise, but I do not deem them acceptable. I would not have described the self-defence techniques and culture of violence in this post otherwise. I would not have injected my personal opinions of him if I thought him praiseworthy. I would not have talked about charging him in court or alluding to informal punishment if I thought he should get away with things.

      But I am, first and foremost, dedicated to principles, among which is that no one, no matter how loathsome, may be stripped of his rights without, without due process. There was no trial save for the court of public opinion, so injustice and autocracy have been served.

  4. I’m not here to further discuss the issue of whether his teachings encourage sexual violence because I have made my point.

    “But I am, first and foremost, dedicated to principles, among which is that no one, no matter how loathsome, may be stripped of his rights without, without due process.”

    I applaud you for your dedication in upholding his rights. Except … he was not stripped of any rights. Look up the Constitution of Singapore and tell me which rights were denied of Julien Blanc. I’ll even do your homework for you. Articles 13 and 14 under Part IV Fundamental Liberties. First, under Art 13(1) and 14(1) respectively, those rights are conferred only on Singaporean citizens. Second, these rights you are talking about are in no way absolute rights meaning they are qualified by a country’s sovereign right to make laws and/or exclude any individual from its territory.

    There is a process that is undertaken by the executive (MHA/ICA) which lead to the conclusion that he is to be banned. Parliament has conferred that right of decision at first instance to them, not the courts. If Blanc is so aggrieved by this decision, he may seek a judicial review of the exercise of MHA and/or ICA’s powers in banning him. In short, there is no guaranteed right that any non-citizen may enter Singapore.

    Apart from that, he has NOT been stripped of any rights – (neither life nor liberty) other than those bestowed upon him by your confused interpretation of our laws..

    • So much for having said everything you had to say on the matter, eh? I also note that you keep shifting around, talking about peripheral points, instead of attempting to grapple with what I have said, not that that strategy has resulted in greater illumination on this subject.

      You see, I am not speaking of rights in reference to Singapore law, which naturally only apply to Singaporeans. I am speaking of the universal right to freedom of movement, which Blanc enjoys by virtue of being human. Under article 13 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, everyone has the right to leave any country, including his own, and return to his country. For someone to leave a country there must be somewhere to go to. Imposing a travel ban on someone reduces the number of destinations he may travel to; therefore this would erode his freedom of movement. There is insufficient justification to prove this ban is warranted, a case you have failed to prove.

      Note that the Singapore executive, not the judiciary, made the decision to ban Blanc. He was not put on trial, no case was heard, no evidence was reviewed in the public eye, and he had been given no chance to defend himself. Given the political climate it is extremely unlikely that Blanc will be successful in seeking a judicial review. Therefore, his right of freedom of movement in general, and his ability to enter Singapore in particular, has been eroded. This, incidentally, runs afoul of Article 10 of the UDHR, which states, “Everyone is entitled in full equality to a fair and public hearing by an independent and impartial tribunal, in the determination of his rights and obligations and of any criminal charge against him.”

      There have been no fair and public hearings by an independent and impartial tribunal. There have only been howling mobs and governments too eager to please the masses. Yesterday the mobs besmirched Blanc; tomorrow, who will they target? Think deeply on this, for speaking in support of their deeds you have signalled what you truly stand for.

  5. Your long paragraphs showing off your martial arts knowledge are redundant and off topic, acting as if he was being banned for assault, when it’s his offensive derogatory teachings people wanted to make a stand against. He uses “murky” methods and you want us to deal with him – meaning let him in and allow him to work his murky methods and wait for it to leave the grey area into black and create actual victims? If it remains grey, it’s not a problem (for you) right? After all, it’s not really rape according to you.

    You’re so sympathetic towards a man you claim to find repulsive. Sure, welcome him into your backyard if you want. And then if he does assault someone, you’ll help with the violent revenge, and we can all applaud you for your bravery.

    Call it mob mentality or whatever you want, but I have my right to slam the door in a repulsive salesman’s face. You can join him on your moral high horse calling me names like NIMBY and fight for his rights to come in.

    Ron said it very well that all this is “very telling of what sort of person you are”. For that, thank you for sharing.

    • By failing to read what I have written, it is very telling what sort of person you are.

      I have argued that the only reason to deprive someone of rights and liberties is if he has harmed someone. I discussed why the scintilla of evidence provided by his accusers fail to show ‘harm’, by talking in terms of violence, predator psychology and anatomy. The same kind of terminology that would be used in a court of law to determine the facts of the case. I do not admire him, nor am I sympathetic towards him, but I speak for principles higher than mere men, and those principles demand that I act regardless of how I feel towards someone.

      You have provided no evidence nor reason beyond ;offensive derogatory teachings’. Through these words you have demonstrated that you act out of disgust and repulsion. Emotions, being subjective, cannot be the basis of public policy. But since you find it acceptable to act based on emotions I can only conclude that you are, like the people I have described here, among those who do not care about humanity — you only care to hold the whip and to feel good about yourself.

      You claim to have your right to slam the door in a repulsive salesman’s face. But this is not so. What you are supporting is not merely refusing to listen to him. Slamming the door is the equivalent of refusing to listen to him; this does not infringe on his rights. What you are doing is banning him from knocking on doors and selling products — in effect, to forbid him from interacting with everybody else, solely because you and fellow travellers feel hurt. If you would wield the power of the law against someone who has committed no provable offense except to hurt your tender emotions, who would you target next? And for what arbitrary reason? And for that matter, you have shown that you do not care about the fate of everybody else who will have to contend with people like Blanc in their midst, as long as he is not bothering you and yours. What kind of person does that make you?

      You have shown the world what manner of man you are. You would rather push him off somewhere else than to deal with him directly. You are not interested in knowing whether he is a threat to society — you just want to feel good about yourself. You would not even honestly attempt to address my points.

      • Yes I’m not bothered to ways more time on people like you, like obviously most wiser people chose not to. Look at all the attention you got for your verbose moral high ground. Well I’ve done my good deed for the day both with giving you the attention and alerting my friends to your views. Carry on crying injustice for the poor misunderstood Blanc who was obviously not demanding women 🙂

        • And that’s all right with me, because my next lungful of air is more important to me, now and in the future, than whatever you think of me. But then, I’d like to think you think.

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