By Ken Reed
When one reads about boxer Magomed Abdusalamov remaining in a coma at Roosevelt Hospital in New York after his Nov. 2nd fight with Mike Perez at Madison Square Garden, one has to ask, “What kind of society sanctions assault and battery for the public entertainment of others?”
The answer, I guess, is a country that matures and progresses very slowly. We’ve moved on from public executions and dog fighting. Things like that are now dubbed “barbaric” by society. But what’s more barbaric than allowing two people to pummel each other’s brains until one of the combatants falls unconscious?
Meanwhile, while Abdusalamov fights for his life in a hospital, the promoters that staged the fight are busy counting their obscene profits. Is there not something wrong with this picture?
Football and hockey have rightly been getting a lot of scrutiny for the brain trauma issues in their sports. But at least those sports are games that have purposes that go beyond pure violence. Boxing’s one and only purpose is to match two combatants until one of them drops to the ground unable to get up. If some fighters die (nearly 2,000 have since the 1890’s) or end up in a coma like Abdusalamov (the father of three kids, ages 8, 4 and 11 months) so be it. It’s part of the game.
Look, boxing clearly should be banned immediately. It’s gratuitous violence that feeds the worst parts of our collective character. It’s depraved and unethical and should be illegal.
Progress as a species is slow. One can only hope that we evolve more quickly to higher standards and stop taking sordid pleasure from watching two fellow human beings inflict pain on each other in a boxing ring.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
Sports Forum Podcast
Episode #14 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Making Sense of the Injury Pandemic in Major League Baseball – The guest is Gary McCoy, a strength, conditioning and high performance coach who has worked with several Major League Baseball organizations. Our focus is the injury pandemic in baseball, what’s causing it and how it can be fixed.
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Episode #13 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: A Conversation With Long-Time MLB Exec Dan Evans About What’s Right With Baseball and What Could Be Better – Evans is a former general manager for the Los Angeles Dodgers and is currently a consultant for Go the Distance Baseball, which owns the Field of Dreams movie site.
Episode #12 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: A Fun Chat With Dan Gutman, Author of the Baseball Card Adventure Series for Kids
Episode #11 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: The Latest on Brain Trauma, Concussions and CTE with Dr. Chris Nowinski – Nowinski is CEO of the Concussion Legacy Foundation.
Episode #10 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: An Issues Discussion With Paul Dolan – Dolan is the Cleveland Indians Owner and CEO.
Episode #9 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Talking Sports Issues With Ralph Nader – Nader is a consumer advocate and was named one of the “100 Most Influential Americans of the 20th Century” by Time magazine. He is the founder of League of Fans.
Media"How We Can Save Sports" author Ken Reed appears on Fox & Friends to explain how there's "too much adult in youth sports."
Ken Reed appears on Mornings with Gail from KFKA Radio in Colorado to discuss bad parenting in youth athletics.
“Should College Athletes Be Paid?” Ken Reed on The Morning Show from Wisconsin Public Radio
Ken Reed appears on KGNU Community Radio in Colorado (at 02:30) to discuss equality in sports and Title IX.
Ken Reed appears on the Ralph Nader Radio Hour (at 38:35) to discuss his book The Sports Reformers: Working to Make the World of Sports a Better Place, and to talk about some current sports issues.
Sports & Torts – Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans – at the American Museum of Tort Law
League of Fans is a sports reform project founded by Ralph Nader to fight for the higher principles of justice, fair play, equal opportunity and civil rights in sports; and to encourage safety and civic responsibility in sports industry and culture.
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