I am not a victim, because I refuse to be a victim, regardless of what life throws at me. I grew up in a very poor family, my mother and grandmother were cleaning ladies, and I was a child raised on welfare who lived in ghettos and barrios my whole life. I was physically abused at home, got into a lot of fights at school, and lived in an area of Philadelphia where violence and gangs were common.
I was raped at age eleven, jumped and hit in the head with a brick by a dozen kids at fifteen, got a traumatic brain injury (TBI), and was in a bad car accident at 17 that almost left me crippled. Most of the friends I grew up with are either dead or in jail, and I was married to an abusive woman for a decade. I am legally blind, I’m hard of hearing, I have two traumatic brain injuries, have multiple spinal curvatures, degenerative spinal conditions, and possibly Fornier’s disease (they are still testing).
I have ulcerative colitis, diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol… Honestly, I thought it would take a miracle to see my 30th birthday, let alone my 44th as I write this. Through all of these setbacks and issues, I’ve managed to achieve many things;
- Written seven books (A book of poetry, a young adult novel, 2 horror compilations, and 3 occult books)
- Recorded and released five albums of music and a single as D-Lux and play piano/keyboards, bass guitar, Cajon, drums, midi, sing and write both music and lyrics. I also do pre and post-production and mastering.
- Painted and sold over 200 pieces of art worldwide.
- 5th Degree master martial artist under a world famous martial artist (though I can no longer practice or teach martial arts)
- Sho Dai Soke Cook’s Kenpo Karate
- Converted to Judaism
- Licensed Psychotherapist, master hypnotherapist, Ericksonian hypnotherapist, Neurolinguistic programming practitioner, Reiki master, and acupressurist
- Father of two boys and two girls
I’ve done a lot of things and have been a lot of things, more so than many twice my age, and I’m still not done, and do you know how? I am not a victim, nor will I ever be one regardless of what happens to me. I will be a survivor, I will be a fighter, I will be the walrus coo coo ca choo, I will be anything and everything, but a victim!
I choose to be victorious over victimhood and knowing my own worth, I would settle for nothing less. This has zero to do with ego and more to do with self-reflection and knowing exactly who I am and what I am capable of. To me, a victim is someone who is no longer with us, someone who was killed or who succumbed to something tragic, but if you’ve overcome something, you’re a victor and not a victim.
Sadly, today the trend is to be a victim, it’s the popular thing with everyone looking for something to be the victim of. People will search high and low for every minor thing to be victimized by, every slight is oppression, every minor infraction is a tragedy and when they still cannot find it, they will create it themselves. It’s like an episode of Oprah everyone is living, “… and you get to be a victim, and you get to be one too, EVERYBODY GETS TO BE A VICTIM!”
People are more miserable today than in recent history, more so than those who were genuinely oppressed and who saw true victimhood occur. People are angry, they are miserable, depression and suicide are at an all-time high, and the great wars fought today are for likes and clicks on videos. For sympathy and pats on the back and thunderous applause by those who are also victims and angry, and depressed over life.
Being a victim is easy today, you get donations, pats on the back, everyone calls you brave and you have to take responsibility for nothing. The drawback to this, is you achieve nothing of genuine value in life, you essentially give your power of self-identity, pride, and self-knowledge over to others and become whatever those who have supposedly “victimized,” you say, and nothing more. Living in such a privileged Western society to claim unabashed victimhood perpetually, is narcissistic at best and degrading to genuine victims at worse.
I choose to keep my power, to choose joy, and to find the little things to rejoice over, I choose to be thankful for every day I am above ground, instead of bitter. I refuse to accept the yoke of society, to be pitied, to be seen as lesser or disabled, I exist to live, not merely survive. I run from the crowd and not alongside the socially acceptable and pushed narratives, which if the media and corporations are supporting your victimhood, you’re not on the right side of history.
I believe the ultimate determining factor of a person is in the decisions they make and the accountability for one’s life they hold. This is a tough one for me even, as I’ve more often than not given away lessons and therapy hours for the less fortunate for free whenever needed, rather than make a paycheck for my services. I’ve practically given away pieces of art to those who couldn’t afford it and have several times even covered shipping, sometimes internationally.
I give of myself because it helps people, it makes people smile, and for that, I am not a wealthy man, I get by, but I am far from wealthy. Yet, I am emphatically NOT a victim of anything more than my generosity, empathy, and soul as it tells me to do good, be good, and see the good. Wealth does not equate to happiness, nor does wealth equate to victimizing others, nor does getting by mean one is a victim, my life is full of joy regardless of what measures stand before me.
I have known very wealthy people who were incredibly kind, and poorer folk who would steal the teeth from your mouth to put under their pillow for a dollar. I have also known the complete opposite, whereas someone wealthy would hoard away every dollar and not care where it came from, while the very poor share in what little they have with others. Wealth or supposed “Victimhood,” does not make anyone more or less susceptible to the darkest parts of human nature, it is a personal decision, choice, and accountability.
I am not a victim and honestly, most of you aren’t either, you’re just looking to escape the reality of your own actions and skirt personal responsibility. If what I’ve said here has made you angry, good, the first step is anger, the second is introspection and reflection, the third is denial, and the fourth is acceptance of the undeniable truth. Not “your truth,” the truth, which is like a lion, you set it free and it needs no one to defend it, it cares little about your feelings, it simply is.