How do you win a boxing match?

By hitting your opponents so hard that you hopefully damage their brains so that they lose consciousness for a while, or you hurt their ribs or stomachs so much that they give up or you cut them above the eye so the blood hinders their vision. So how can people speak of the ethics of boxing or boxing ethics?

Just imagine the message that boxing/cage fighting sends to people. It is okay to assault people – as long as you do it within certain rules!.You can  hit them, kick them and knee them. It is good to be aggressive and being so earns you money and fame. You are revered if you are a champion at hitting people.

Is not boxing just a milder form of the savagery of ancient Rome where people were torn apart by animals or made to fight to the death?

We could be gentle with our criticism of  most boxers – perhaps they were influenced by parents to take part or perhaps boxing was their way out of a difficult life and the only thing they found they were good at.  Still, they must begin to see the impression they are giving to young people.

Our harshest criticism should be aimed at boxing promoters – those who (like the gladiator masters of old) pit people against one another for financial gain. Let’s face it when unethical behaviour arises, it usually comes down to money.  But hold on a minute what about people who pay for tickets and get joy  from seeing human beings hurting and injuring each other?  We even cage people when they fight – treating them like animals. Is that not unethical? Is that not giving in to the worst side of our fhuman nature?

Note to editors Dr Bill is available for expert opinion, interviews and comments on ethical matters. See About Us for Bill’s credentials.

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