@stonyman65: I'm sure, but the problem with many of these arts is that they often have to be watered down when taught to the general public. The dilemma that remains is that how useful is it to train an extremely deadly technique when you can never really try it in sparring or sometimes even in drills to really know you've mastered it? And even so, if you're not a soldier, how useful are these techniques to begin with? Perhaps in the U.S. it might be a little different, but in most parts of Europe, for example, you can't just maim or kill your attacker because "they started it." Even the police typically must not cause any more damage or inconvenience than is absolutely necessary.
To most people, my advice would be to pick an art that seems interesting or fun to you personally, and intrinsically. By which I mean not as a means to learn to protect yourself, but because it's fun to train the art, or to compete in it, or whatever. As a result, you will get into better shape and maybe even learn to defend yourself a little bit in some situations. Even if you're a professional boxer and you can beat the shit out of pretty much anyone you would ever meet on the "street", it doesn't make you bulletproof, knifeproof, or immune to prosecution.