How Can a Sport Whose Sole Purpose Is To Cause Brain Damage in One’s Opponent Still Be Legal?
By Ken Reed
Patrick Day is dead. At 27. Because of a blow to the head suffered during a boxing match. How senseless.
Maxim Dadashev, another boxer, is also dead. At age 28. So is Hugo Alfredo Santillan, an Argentine boxer. Dead at 23.
So much of life ahead of them. Wiped out by a sport whose sole purpose is to inflict brain damage on one’s opponent (yes, that’s what a “knockout” is).
Those three pro boxers died this year after suffering traumatic brain injuries in the ring. Yet, somehow boxing remains a legal activity in the United States, despite all we know about the brain disease chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), concussions and the dangers of repetitive sub-concussive blows to the brain.
How barbaric are we?
“It becomes very difficult to explain away or justify the dangers of boxing at a time like this,” wrote boxing promoter Lou DiBella, Patrick Day’s promoter, on his website earlier this month.
It’s not just difficult to explain, Mr. DiBella, it’s impossible.
— Ken Reed, Sports Policy Director, League of Fans
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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.
Episode #8 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: How Can We Save College Sports From Overcommercialization and Professionalization? – The guest is Dr. David Ridpath, a sports business professor and past president of the Drake Group
Episode #7 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Brain Trauma and CTE Risk in Sports With Dr. Ann McKee – Dr. McKee works in the field of neuropathology and has demonstrated that “mild” repetitive head trauma can provoke chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a devastating neurodegenerative disease.
Episode #6 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: The Need for Quality Physical Education in Our Schools is Greater Than Ever – The guest is Clayton Ellis, one of our nation’s leading advocates for getting our young people to be more physically active.
Episode #5 – League of Fans’ Sports Forum podcast: Youth Sports with Positive Coaching Alliance Founder Jim Thompson – Thompson started Positive Coaching Alliance (PCA) in 1998 to help create a movement to transform the culture of youth sports from “win-at-all-costs” to a positive, character-building experience.
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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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