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Blood Sports (Debate)

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Blood sports should not be banned; whatever problems there are with the sport can be fixed with reforms. The World Health Organization has called for tighter regulation, including “Simple rules, such as requiring medical clearance, national passports to prevent players from fighting under more than one name, restricting fights for fixed periods after knockouts, requiring that ringside physicians be paid by the state and not the promoter, and making sure that the players are aware of the potential long-term consequence of blood sports, may help protect them to some degree.”The Australian Medical Association additionally “recommends that media coverage should be subject to control codes similar to those which apply to television screening of violence.

”Finally, the World Medical Association suggests that all matches should have a ring physician authorized to stop the fight at any time. It has been reported that no safety regulations would be effective if head blows remain – however such authors incorrectly apportion blame on boxing for a group of diseases known as Parkinson’s syndrome. Blood sports can result in chronic traumatic neurological conditions if fighters are not well matched, and fight without regulations in regard to their exposure. Boxing cannot cause Parkinson’s disease or other conditions such as Alzheimer’s disease as those are genetic conditions – so to include them together as one set of conditions is incorrect and misleading.

About 80% of deaths are caused by head, brain, and neck injuries, so the removal of the head as a scoring region may make a huge difference to the injury outcomes for this sport. However it would also change the very nature of the sport; and may mean people won’t participate in it. Ultimately, governments should do what they can to make blood sports as safe as possible, without losing the essence of the sport or banning it entirely.

(Banning blood sports would force people to channel their aggression into more harmful, violent activities)

There is no conclusive scientific evidence linking increased contact sport participation with being more violent in social settings. Such statements make it sound as thought we would have not violence in society if all contact sport was removed – and we all know that is untrue. Blood sports isn’t about violent aggression, it is about controlled aggression – this is very different to violent behaviors. In a report on “violent” sports in schools, conducted by the Lance Armstrong Foundation, a martial-arts instructor explained, “Contact and combat sports allow students to deal with their aggression in a safe environment, rather than in the context of the classroom or school hallway.”This type of outlet is not only important for youth, but for adults as well. Jason Brick said, “Positive Views on Violence In Sports,” Live strong, January 7, 2011, accessed July 13, 2011,

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(The Effect of blood sports on the viewers)
Blood Sports have been around for decades. Viewing violence generally triggers or serves in the increase of aggression of an individual. Sports such as wrestling (smack down) and Ultimate Fighter Competition (UFC) are bloody sports and have mostly negative effects on those who watch them. The objective of these two sports is to beat an individual into unconsciousness, make them tap out by inflicting pain, if none of these is accomplished within a time frame, the match is to be stopped and the judges decide who wins. Many children, teenagers, and even adults tend to try and imitate a knock out or combos that were seen performed at one of these fights onto an individual in an uncontrolled environment whether it is their sibling, friend, coworker, or a stranger for different reasons that includes but is not limited to a misunderstanding or horse playing.

Watching this sport leaves the viewer psychologically aggressive. For example, if someone watches a match and gets into a fight with another person later on, that person is more likely to use a technique he saw during the fight, and since there is no referee to stop the fight in case of suffocation or tap-out, the victim is more likely to bleed, pass out or even dies. During the 1980’s, two men were in a bar discussing the Marvin Haggler and Sugar Ray Leonard fight that had occurred several days before, and in the process on trying to show exactly how one of the punch landed, both men went outside, drawing a crowd with them. The demonstration turned tragic when one of the men landed a punch to the jaw of the other, and such was the power of the blow, that the victim fell, hit his head on the pavement and started to bleed, and had to be buried a few weeks later.

Seeing and permitting violence to be seen makes it seem normal and legal when in fact it is not normal and it is horrible, but here is where lies another problem which is called desensitization. Many years ago when a horrible scene was about to be portrayed on your television set, there would first appear a window saying ‘the images that you are about to see might injure the sensibility of certain people’ or words to that effect. Well, have you noticed that now they no longer even bother showing that little window? It’s as if the media know that human kind are used to everything by now. That nothing is going to affect them that much. So what does this show? It shows that us human beings are getting desensitized to everything and when that happens it also means that we don’t get so emotional about anything anymore and so consequently don’t fight any more either in order to strive for a change. We have all come to a point where nothing moves us that much anymore.

(Pain and Injury as the Price of blood sports)
Many people think about sports in a paradoxical way: They accept violence in sports, but the injuries caused by that violence make them uneasy. They seem to want violence without consequences— like the fictionalized violence they see in the media and video games in which characters engage in brutality without being seriously or permanently injured. However, blood sports are real, and it causes real pain, injury, disability, and even death (Dater, 2005; Farber, 2004; Leahy, 2008; Rice, 2005; Smith, 2005b; Young, 2004a). Ron Rice, an NFL player whose career ended when he tackled an opponent, discusses the real consequences of blood sports. The brutal body contact of the tackle left him temporarily paralyzed and permanently disabled. He remembers that “before I hit the ground, I knew my career was over. . . . My body froze. I was like a tree that had been cut down, teetering, then crashing, unable to break my fall.”

Research on pain and injury among athletes helps us understand that blood sports have real consequences. Studies indicate that professional sports involving brutal body contact and borderline violence are among the most dangerous workplaces in the occupational world. The same could be said about high-profile power and performance intercollegiate sports in which 80 percent of male and female athletes sustain at least one serious injury while playing their sports and nearly 70 percent are disabled for two or more weeks.

Research shows a close connection between dominant ideas about masculinity and the high rate of injuries in many sports. Ironically, some power and performance sports are organized so that players feel that their manhood is up for grabs.

Men who define masculinity in terms of physically dominating others often use violence in sports as an expression of this code of manhood. Until they critically examine issues related to gender and the organization of their sports, they will mistakenly define violence as a source of rewards rather than a source of chronic pain and disabilities that constrain and threaten their lives.

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