Knock out Boxing
“It goes without saying that the sport boxing can be defined as barbaric and dangerous and is something that has been around for centuries. Other sports have goals of making a basket for points, getting a touchdown, or even hitting a home run. However, boxing is not like any other sport. The goal of boxing is to hurt the other opponent by knocking them out with blows to the head. Unfortunately, violence has become such a big part of our lives and it can be witnessed in many ways.
When you think of boxing, what do you see? Maybe someone who is trying to relieve some stress, win a match, and/or wanting to take down the other opponent to be the best. Boxing has a heavy impact on the larger society for many reasons and there are many issues and reasons that come into play regarding the sport and why it should no longer exist.
Sports are a very important part of culture and are often created by groups of individuals who are part of a specific culture. These individuals base their sports and games on values, needs, interests, and resources of the group and the area in which they are located. Different cultures create and use sports for a variety of purposes, therefore, sports are very different and take on different meanings from culture to culture. There are factors in each society that may limit individual access and participation in all or certain sports. These factors include: religion, politics, economics, and family preference.
The value of sports takes on very different meanings in different cultures. For example, some cultures place a great emphasis on athletes and sports while other cultures place more emphasis on academics and learning. There are other factors that greatly influence the value of sports for both individuals, as well as, cultures such as rewards received from participating in sports and the status the athlete may be able to earn. The value of sports and their importance are not only an individual decision and belief, but also that of a family, a community, and a culture as a whole.
Similar social issues that exist in society as a whole also exist in sports. Gender inequality is an issue every day in many different aspects of our world. Not only does it exist in the work environment, but also in sports. During most of the 1800’s women were discouraged or banned from participating in sports. Most sports were considered a man’s sport and women were not encouraged to participate in them. While women have made huge strides in gaining equality, there is still a gender gap in the area of sports. The sports men typically watch are given much more screen time than those women typically watch.
The moral aspect of sports and society are another issue. Many parents encourage their children to become involved in sports because they believe that it will encourage their child to learn important concepts such as teamwork, respect, and perseverance. Many athletes exhibit behaviors that deviate from the accepted normal behaviors of moral individuals.
Often the desire to win and be competitive causes athletes to behave in ways that are not considered ethical or moral at all. For example, some athletes take steroids or performance enhancing drugs to be the best in the sport, others have been known to cheat or bribe officials, and some athletes have lied and deceived fans. When athletes commit crimes that are illegal for the common individual they are often given lighter sentences or no punishment since they are famous sport personalities.
Sports play a huge role in our lives, our society, and our world. Many people are very committed to being athletes and participating in organized sports events. There are even a greater number of individuals who are committed to watching and supporting sports teams or individual athletes. Sports most certainly have benefits to everyone involved such as learning a more active lifestyle, and developing a sense of comradery. While they are a very important aspect of many individuals lives, sports present concerns and issues in the larger society of which it is a part.
Many people argue that a sport as brutal as boxing should still be permitted to exist in our civilized society. There are three types of people. Those who see it as a beautiful sport that has been in existence for many centuries and it should be preserved and continued. Those who believe that it is a barbaric sport and that it should be banned since it leads to a lot of long term negative effects for those who participate in it. Finally, the majority of people who do not really have an opinion about it one way or another.
There are many dangers to boxing, but there is also a great interest in it as well. With that being said it is a big money making sport. At the time that people are watching boxing matches, the dangers of the sport itself are not really addressed because the dangers would distract from the financial gain. Boxing has long been considered a violent sport, but it still exists and thrives. Boxing is able to exist and thrive because society finds it to be an acceptable activity. People have a desire to participate in boxing and millions of individuals have a desire to watch those people participate in a sport and will pay money to go watch them.
Boxing takes place of physical assault which would be illegal in any other context, however we glamorize violence and become famous and rich from physical aggression. Although, the men who are boxing have a choice and the free will to undergo such violence to participate in the sport, I do not believe that boxing can exist a part from the larger American society of which it is a part of. Boxing needs the support of the society that it appeals to, to maintain popularity and continue to create revenue which makes it more popular and appealing.
In order to continue to be successful, boxing must use the resources available in our modern society such as the internet, television, radio, advertisement, etc. if there is no interest in boxing, the sport will simply die out and be replaced by another sport. In Joyce Carol Oates book, “On Boxing” she says, “Boxing is about being hit rather more than it is about hitting, just as it is about feeling pain, if not devastating psychological paralysis, more than it is about winning” (p. 25). This is an example of how boxing is this glamorized sport where it is okay to hurt other people. This is appealing to the worst and most violent parts of humans. There are people who die or have severe illnesses due to going into the ring and facing against someone. The controversy of whether the sport should continue to exist brings awareness and publicity to the sport, hence creating new fans and intriguing established fans.
In the movie, “Raging Bull” Jake LaMotta is a very big hot head inside the ring and outside of the ring. The movie shows the violence and temper of LaMotta and how he treats his family and friends is the same way that he treats his opponents inside of the ring. For Jake LaMotta, his rage helped him to become a champ inside of the ring, but for his life outside, the outcome was not the same. This movie shows how the violence that was brewing inside him helped in the long run, however in reality what did he end up with?
He was nicknamed “The Raging Bull” because of his relentless ways and during one of his fights with Sugar Ray Robinson he said, “Hey Ray, I never went down man! You never got me down, Ray! You hear me, you never got me down.” He was so stubborn and ruthless that no matter who he was talking to or what he was doing, he acted and treated everyone like he was in the ring at all times. This is a prime example of the controversy that fighting someone for fame and fortune can have on you.
Another example is the 1984 Olympics that took place in Los Angeles, California. Evander Holyfield who represented the United States and went against Kevin Barry. During the fight, Holyfield was giving blows to Barry’s stomach and head and the referee shouted “stop” however, Holyfield was in the middle of a hit and hit Barry to the point where he dropped him to the mat, after the referee said to stop. This call made a ruckus due to the fact that Holyfield was disqualified and not awarded the medal that he should have got.
Although, the United States protested this issue, they were denied. Even though the referee apologized for disqualifying him, this didn’t change the outcome. This shows that in the middle of a fight, you are so strung on getting your opponent down and doing it at any cost. Although, Holyfield was not in the wrong here, it shows that violence and rage took over in order to be rewarded with a medal. With this controversy happening, it showed that boxing would not be the sport that we know today without the incidents that had happened during these Olympics. Rage and adrenaline take over, if this happens in the ring during a fight why wouldn’t it happen in the real world if you are provoked and mad about something?
Although, boxing has been around before I can remember. I think of the rage and the bullying in the ring that could lead to become dangerous. It is showing our young people that if you have so much anger inside of you, step inside of the ring and take it out on someone else. If somebody is going to do it in the ring, they will most likely do it outside of it. The goals of boxing are much different than the other sports that are out there. The injuries that happen are mostly accidental and you can do things to prevent injuries from happening, boxing you are the reason behind those injuries.
Boxing shows a big part of the violence that we see in everyday life and it promotes others to knock each other out to say that you are the best fighter. Boxing is glamorized due to physical aggression, where anywhere else we would be in trouble if we showed that aggression elsewhere. It not only shows violence, but how heavily this sport can affect a person, the way that they act, and how they treat others inside and outside of the ring. And therefore, we need to think about boxing as more than a sport and how it effects our society and how we can overcome the issue of violence in boxing. This sport needs to be put to rest and it needs to be knocked out for good!”