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Oh yes, itwould go there. How about a streetfight show, in which dudes wearing cool looking clothes kick each other in the throat, pull switchblades and leave permanent scars. While women get raped in the stands.

Now, that's entertainment...

I watched UFC 20 years ago a few times, and after a certain match found it too violent for me. Since then, they vastly improved it by making it less violent. They stop matches at an appropriate time, and eliminated the blood bath. As a result, it became far more popular. I don't think that MMA is more violent today than boxing was 50 years ago, so I completely disagree with your comment.

Though, I only watch it on occasion, but it's more about hanging out drinking beers than enjoying the fights...

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I watched UFC 20 years ago a few times, and after a certain match found it too violent for me.

But the sport is actually a lot less violent than boxing. The problem here is the perception that bood = violence. The reality is the repetitive blows to the head inherent in boxing are more violent than being cut open in terms of trauma to the body. These blows in boxing accumulate and cause brain damage, but in MMA theres much less of them for a number of reasons.

Boxing is not only flat out more dangerous and violent than MMA, its statistically much more dangerous. In lart part because the gloves they wear are so dangerous.

Also... the UFC has changed a lot during the last 20 years. Its not just big dummies swing for the fences anymore its many of the best martial artists in the world... most of them with black belts in numerous different disciplines.

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Well I know some of you are "fans", and you listen to and believe the information coming out from the UFC governing body. But they have a vested financial interest to keep their business running. The doctors have no such interest. I'll go with the people who have valid concerns based on professional opinion, not the money changers.

Not saying boxing is not dangerous though. Yes, repeated head shots must have some efct

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Well I know some of you are "fans", and you listen to and believe the information coming out from the UFC governing body. But they have a vested financial interest to keep their business running. The doctors have no such interest. I'll go with the people who have valid concerns based on professional opinion, not the money changers.

You make it sound as if the BCMA based this on extensive research. In fact, the opposite is true, as the BCMA president himself explains in this Vancouver Sun article:

BCMA president Dr. Ian Gillespie said Friday that concern about brain injuries prompted the push to ban the sport. He said the BCMA’s concerns came up after emergency room doctors had to deal with a number of injured fighters showing up at Vancouver General Hospital’s emergency department after a mixed martial arts match in June.

Fighters were treated for “cuts and fractured limbs and severe facial bruising,” Gillespie said, but no brain injuries.

There was an event in Vancouver, doctors treated cuts, bruises, and fractured limbs afterward, and said "oh no this is terrible we have to stop this!"

If you don't believe the information coming out of UFC, how about the information coming out of the Johns Hopkins study that concluded that injury rate in MMA is comparable to other martial arts sports, and that the risk of brain injury is lower than in boxing.

They actually studied the issue, unlike the BCMA.

Let's be honest here: the BCMA are acting on moralist reasons.

I'll believe their position is based on the risk of broken limbs if they issue a call for a national ban on downhill skiing. I'll believe their position is based on the risk of brain injury when they issue a call for a national ban on hockey and football.

Trying to dress this up as medical concern is an insult to the intelligence of everyone involved.

-k

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There was an event in Vancouver, doctors treated cuts, bruises, and fractured limbs afterward, and said "oh no this is terrible we have to stop this!"

That is an oversimplification of the issue. These people are professionals and their concerns are valid. MMA is a dangerous sport with the potential to kill, and it has killed.

Moving on to a more reasonable, measured view, I like this excerpt from the article-

Gillespie said the BCMA takes the position that MMA fights are more dangerous than boxing because of fewer safety rules.

“MMA allows a fighter to attack an opponent while down and we believe those things increase the risk of serious injury,” said Gillespie.

So agreed Dr. Samuel Gutman, founder of Vancouver’s Rock Doc Consulting and an ER physician at Lions Gate Hospital, who’s treated MMA athletes as a ringside doctor and other combative sports for the past seven years.

“What’s really needed is a provincial governing body that will protect the fighter,” Gutman told The Province. “The fact is [the sport] is not going away and it’s being practiced in less than a safe manner in some cases, like many other things. Gutman was working at Vancouver’s first UFC tournament at GM Place (now Rogers Arena) in June, which drew a sold-out crowd, and said the injuries suffered by those athletes are representative of those overall in the sport.

Gillespie noted Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador, Yukon and Nunavut have province-wide bans on contests, while New Brunswick has a ban on MMA fighting outside of Moncton.

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The move to have better rules and improved safety would be good for the MMA, because it will be accepted into the mainstream and have a wider audience, and so make more money.

And there you have it. The outcome of a reasonable debate should be something positive, not simply "No you fool, what the heck do you know."

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That is an oversimplification of the issue. These people are professionals and their concerns are valid. MMA is a dangerous sport with the potential to kill, and it has killed.

Moving on to a more reasonable, measured view, I like this excerpt from the article-

Gillespie said the BCMA takes the position that MMA fights are more dangerous than boxing because of fewer safety rules.

“MMA allows a fighter to attack an opponent while down and we believe those things increase the risk of serious injury,” said Gillespie.

So agreed Dr. Samuel Gutman, founder of Vancouver’s Rock Doc Consulting and an ER physician at Lions Gate Hospital, who’s treated MMA athletes as a ringside doctor and other combative sports for the past seven years.

“What’s really needed is a provincial governing body that will protect the fighter,” Gutman told The Province. “The fact is [the sport] is not going away and it’s being practiced in less than a safe manner in some cases, like many other things. Gutman was working at Vancouver’s first UFC tournament at GM Place (now Rogers Arena) in June, which drew a sold-out crowd, and said the injuries suffered by those athletes are representative of those overall in the sport.

Gillespie noted Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador, Yukon and Nunavut have province-wide bans on contests, while New Brunswick has a ban on MMA fighting outside of Moncton.

Link

The move to have better rules and improved safety would be good for the MMA, because it will be accepted into the mainstream and have a wider audience, and so make more money.

And there you have it. The outcome of a reasonable debate should be something positive, not simply "No you fool, what the heck do you know."

The move to have better rules and improved safety would be good for the MMA, because it will be accepted into the mainstream and have a wider audience, and so make more money.

That move has already taken place, and the risk to MMA fighters is already in line with other sports. Its safer than boxing... and safer than American football. In the last 10 years there has been a massive rewriting of the rules to deal with safety concerns and negative public perception of the UFC prior being taken over by Zuffa.

Heres an excellent article... It talks about some of the same things mentioned here, including the safety angle and moral angle, and how dangerous boxing gloves are.

Since the sport of mixed martial arts was first introduced to the United States in 1993, it has been the subject of much heated political debate. The opponents of mixed martial arts have leveled numerous arguments against the sport, and under the leadership of Arizona Senator John McCain, they even succeeded in forcing the sport from national pay-per-view carriers, and convinced several states to ban the sport. The four year forced hiatus that the sport experienced from 1997 until 2001 was a direct result of the political onslaught headed by Senator John McCain. Though on the surface, this event may look to be a terrible set of circumstances for the sport of mixed martial arts, but in reality this hiatus allowed the sport to almost totally reinvent itself. Though the rules of the UFC had been changed prior to the sale of the franchise to Zuffa by SEG, the sport still carried much of the negative stigma that was associated with the unruly nature of the early UFCs until the sport was dropped from pay-per-view carriers for several years. When the sport reemerged in 2001, many of the sport’s greatest opponents had all but forgotten about it, which allowed it to reemerge under the political radar. This also allowed the sport to gain a new fan base and to expand its support.

A major factor in the reemergence of the sport, and the return of the sport to pay-per-view was the utilization of a new set of rules. The Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts Combat, as drafted in New Jersey, and later adopted in Nevada on July 23, 2001 were a welcome change to the sport. The new rules featured five weight classes, rounds, time limits, a list of over 31 fouls, and eight possible ways for the fight to end . This differed greatly from the rules present at the sport’s genesis in the United States, which allowed for no weight classes, no time limits, no rounds, two methods of victory, and only three fouls. In drafting the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts Combat, the commission that worked on the project had the goal of making the sport safer, and to take the sport from a spectacle into the realm of respectable sporting events.

According to John McCarthy, head referee for the UFC since UFC II, the commission looked to other combative sports for rules that the sport of mixed martial arts could incorporate. Among these sports were the accepted Olympic rules for boxing, judo and wrestling, as well as the rules for professional kickboxing, and Brazilian jiu-jitsu tournament rules. The primary obstacle that the commission had to overcome was that no other sport in existence permitted striking while the participants are on the ground, but this is an essential feature in mixed martial arts. Nonetheless, the commission included striking on the ground in the rules. The Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts Combat have become the standard rules of not only the UFC, but of most major mixed martial arts promotions in the United States, and have been adopted by many states, including New Jersey, Nevada, Florida, California and Louisiana.

In order to fully understand why it was necessary for the sport to adopt the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts combat, it is necessary to analyze the exact arguments that have been leveled at the sport. The sport has been called “barbaric,” and labeled as “human cockfighting.” Beginning with Calvin McCard’s opposition to the holding of UFC IIX in San Juan, Puerto Rico, politicians began to take notice of the negative aspects of the sport. Most notable among these was Arizona Senator John McCain. McCain, an avid and lifelong boxing enthusiast, was horrified when he was shown a tape of an early UFC. He sparked a letter writing campaign to prevent UFC IIX, but the event went on despite his opposition. McCain’s next target was Colorado, the intended site of UFC IX, which also went on despite strong opposition, but with new rules. Following UFC IX, John McCain targeted the cable pay-per-view providers to encourage them to drop the UFC. He encouraged Neil Henry, a personal friend of Senator McCain’s, and the owner of TCI, the pay-per-view provider that was hosting the UFC’s events to drop the UFC from his service. Senator McCain also sat on the FCC commission, which had much say over Mr. Henry’s business. Mr. Henry voiced many of the opinions that Senator McCain and other opponents of the UFC had been voicing up until that point. Mr. Henry and Senator McCain believed the sport was “too brutal,” and that “to hit a man when he was down was un-American.” Other opponents of the sport believed that the sport raised serious moral issues, in that it encouraged two participants to enter a cage, or ring and seriously injure or maim one another.

The claims against the sport that were based on the health and safety of its participants seem to be widely based on misunderstanding. First, a sort of cultural determinism seems to have influenced the opponents of the sport of mixed martial arts. Unlike Japan and Brazil where mixed martial arts have a long history of popular acceptance, American society’s only experience with a mainstream combat sport is with that of boxing. Under the Marques of Queensbury rules, boxing only permits punches thrown to the head and body, unlike mixed martial arts which permits punches and kicks to all areas of the body with the exception of the groin, neck and back of the head, as well as knees and elbow strikes, takedowns, throws, and submissions.

Also, in boxing, the participants wear large padded gloves, whereas in mixed martial arts, the participants wear only minimally padded gloves. On the surface, this would make the sport of mixed martial arts seem significantly more dangerous, but in reality, it is actually safer. The heavily padded gloves used in boxing are actually employed to protect the boxers’ hands, not their opponents’ face and body. This allows the boxer to throw more punches to the head and body of his opponent than mixed martial artists, as mixed martial arts gloves do not protect the wearer’s hands as much as boxing gloves. In addition to the lower level of padding used in mixed martial arts gloves, the greater volume of techniques that can be employed in mixed martial arts actually make the sport safer as well. In the words of professional mixed martial artist John Rallo,

“After all the goal in boxing is to punch you opponent in the head until he is unconscious. This is not the goal in our sport. There are many other ways to win. Since 1900 their have been over 1000 documented deaths in boxing. There has been 1 in MMA in 70 years. That was in Russia at an unsanctioned event. Ironically the death was caused by strikes to the head.”

Mr. Rallo’s claim about the sheer volume of deaths in the history of the sport boxing is substantiated by numerous reports, most notable of these is the Manuel Vasquez Boxing Fatality Collection. The Vasquez Collection is a documentation of all reported deaths in the sport of boxing since 1900. The list compiled by Vasquez, and continually updated since his death, now contains 1,157 names. Ironically, one such death in the sport of boxing, the 1995 death of Jimmy Garcia, was witnessed by Senator John McCain, as he sat ringside. Strangely, Senator McCain remains a fan of boxing, a sport with a marred safety record, and over 1,000 recorded deaths in a little over 100 years, but he continues to be an opponent of the sport of mixed martial arts, which has not had a serious injury in the recorded history of the sport. In comparison to many sports that are widely and popularly accepted in American culture, including football, cheerleading, hockey, boxing and basketball, mixed martial arts is relatively safe. The numerous ways in which a fight can end in a mixed martial arts event, the great deal of safety precautions taken by promoters, and the attentiveness of mixed martial arts referees, who can end the fight at any time they see fit are all reasons why there have been no serious injuries in the recorded history of sanctioned mixed martial arts events. The effect that the various ways in which a mixed martial arts fight can end have on the safety of the sport is illustrated by John Rallo in his statement that:

“…it is honorable to tap in our sport. If you quit in a boxing match you may not fight again. Look at Roberto Duran after the "no mas" match with Ray Leonard. He was looked down upon and never regained his edge after that fight. A KO is not the only means of victory. The average boxer takes several hundred blows to the head in a winning performance. In MMA I have been in fights and not even taken one punch. If you take down your opponent and finish the fight on the ground you greatly reduce the chances of being KO'ed or even hit at all. Obviously there are injuries. This is a contact sport. But the injuries are no more severe then those suffered by collegiate wrestlers or football players.”

Even in the case of mixed martial arts events that are held on Indian Reservations, or in casinos where sanctioning bodies are not present, and the events are not monitored, such as Rob Braniff’s Freestyle Fighting Championship, it is still commonplace that the methods of business, safety measures employed and the ethical measures taken far surpass the rules and regulations set out by the sanctioning bodies of outlying areas.

Another major argument against the sport of mixed martial arts is that it is immoral, and goes against the morals that are considered part of the “American way of life.” Opponents of the sport question the sport’s morality, as it requires two opponents to enter a ring or cage with the intention of hurting or injuring one another. Another moral argument against the sport is that striking a downed opponent is “un-American.” Proponents of the sport strongly disagree with these allegations. Proponents of the sport strongly disagree with these allegations. One such proponent, John McCarthy emphasizes that the fighters in mixed martial arts do not fight to inflict pain on one another, rather they fight for the sake of competition. He states that all of the fighters that he has talked to about this issue say that when they fight, it is all about the sport, and that it is more an issue of dominance, like a game of chess, rather than one of inflicting pain on another human being. In this vein, Mr. McCarthy says that the ethics of mixed martial arts are the same as those of other widely accepted sports, such as football or hockey, where inflicting pain on the competition is merely a part of the sport, not the ends of competing. Professional mixed martial artist John Rallo reinforces this. Mr. Rallo says that when he fights:

“I feel respect for my opponents. They trained just as hard to beat me as I did to beat them. You can't underestimate anyone in this sport. One mistake and the fight is over. My emotional state is probably nervous…As for getting into the ring to harm my opponent this is not true. I am getting in the ring to win the competition. Unlike boxing, I can use submissions to defeat my opponent. Since competitors can honorably tap out usually nothing more is injured then pride. If you know them well it does complicate things a bit. But it is a sport. It is not personal. After the match is over you get up shake each other’s hand and continue to be friends.”

As for the morals of the sport of mixed martial arts being un-American, this statement too is refutable. Though the United States of America was founded on the principle of religious freedom, it is quite easily recognized that the founding of the United States of America and its government had a heavy Christian influence. This manifests itself in many ways, even to this day. It can be seen in everything from American currency, which bears the statement “In God We Trust,” to the Pledge of Allegiance, which proclaims the United States of America to be “One nation under God,” and these are just two of many examples of the imprint that Judeo-Christian beliefs and morals have on the United States. Since the American way of life and the morals that comprise it have their roots in the Judeo-Christian belief system, it would be difficult for the opponents of mixed martial arts to level a moral argument against the sport, since the first book of the Holy Bible (which happens to be part of the religious scripture for not only Christian religions, but Judaism, and Islam) features a tale of a mixed martial arts style competition between Jacob and God. Genesis 32 tells the story of how Jacob grappled with God at Peniel for the duration of a night. When the night was over, Jacob had dislocated his hip, and for his refusal to submit, or “tap out” in mixed martial arts terminology, God blessed Jacob.

Currently, mixed martial arts is the fastest growing sport in the United States of America. Its fans and participants can be found all over the country, and in all walks of life. They represent every race, creed and class of people in the United States. They are teachers, police officers, attorneys, truck drivers, accountants, laborers, ministers, soldiers, doctors, students, and family members. They are as much American as the fans and athletes involved in any other sport that is popularly and culturally accepted by the people of the United States of America. They are not savages, barbarians or criminals, nor are they a collection of social deviants and miscreants as people like John McCain would have the voting public believe. They are simply people who enjoy a sport that is misunderstood and as a result, feared and hated.

As the fan base of the sport continues to expand and grow, the sport will receive more attention as it edges closer to mainstream American culture. Currently, UFC events are covered in USA Today, and the Fox Sports Network, which has aired several fights from UFC events on its network, and ESPN airs similar competitions as part of its regular line up. It is only a matter of time before the sport of mixed martial arts is a mainstream sport which will rival boxing, but in order for the sport to gain mainstream acceptance, the public must be educated on the sport. As long as the terrible misconceptions that are associated with the sport continue to permeate society, misguided opposition to the sport will exist based on these misconceptions and irrational ideas. Only with education will the society ever fully accept the sport of mixed martial arts. Until the public can be educated, the sport will remain a fringe oddity to some members of the population, and will continue to be considered in the same vein as “extreme” sports, though it could achieve much greater things. The potential for the success of the sport exists, as evidenced by the widespread acceptance and monetary gains the sport has gained in both Japan and Brazil. It is only a matter of time before the sport of mixed martial arts sweeps the United States.

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That move has already taken place, and the risk to MMA fighters is already in line with other sports. Its safer than boxing... and safer than American football. In the last 10 years there has been a massive rewriting of the rules to deal with safety concerns and negative public perception of the UFC prior being taken over by Zuffa.

Heres an excellent article... It talks about some of the same things mentioned here, including the safety angle and moral angle, and how dangerous boxing gloves are.

Since the sport of mixed martial arts was first introduced to the United States in 1993, it has been the subject of much heated political debate. The opponents of mixed martial arts have leveled numerous arguments against the sport, and under the leadership of Arizona Senator John McCain, they even succeeded in forcing the sport from national pay-per-view carriers, and convinced several states to ban the sport. The four year forced hiatus that the sport experienced from 1997 until 2001 was a direct result of the political onslaught headed by Senator John McCain. Though on the surface, this event may look to be a terrible set of circumstances for the sport of mixed martial arts, but in reality this hiatus allowed the sport to almost totally reinvent itself. Though the rules of the UFC had been changed prior to the sale of the franchise to Zuffa by SEG, the sport still carried much of the negative stigma that was associated with the unruly nature of the early UFCs until the sport was dropped from pay-per-view carriers for several years. When the sport reemerged in 2001, many of the sport’s greatest opponents had all but forgotten about it, which allowed it to reemerge under the political radar. This also allowed the sport to gain a new fan base and to expand its support.

A major factor in the reemergence of the sport, and the return of the sport to pay-per-view was the utilization of a new set of rules. The Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts Combat, as drafted in New Jersey, and later adopted in Nevada on July 23, 2001 were a welcome change to the sport. The new rules featured five weight classes, rounds, time limits, a list of over 31 fouls, and eight possible ways for the fight to end . This differed greatly from the rules present at the sport’s genesis in the United States, which allowed for no weight classes, no time limits, no rounds, two methods of victory, and only three fouls. In drafting the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts Combat, the commission that worked on the project had the goal of making the sport safer, and to take the sport from a spectacle into the realm of respectable sporting events.

According to John McCarthy, head referee for the UFC since UFC II, the commission looked to other combative sports for rules that the sport of mixed martial arts could incorporate. Among these sports were the accepted Olympic rules for boxing, judo and wrestling, as well as the rules for professional kickboxing, and Brazilian jiu-jitsu tournament rules. The primary obstacle that the commission had to overcome was that no other sport in existence permitted striking while the participants are on the ground, but this is an essential feature in mixed martial arts. Nonetheless, the commission included striking on the ground in the rules. The Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts Combat have become the standard rules of not only the UFC, but of most major mixed martial arts promotions in the United States, and have been adopted by many states, including New Jersey, Nevada, Florida, California and Louisiana.

In order to fully understand why it was necessary for the sport to adopt the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts combat, it is necessary to analyze the exact arguments that have been leveled at the sport. The sport has been called “barbaric,” and labeled as “human cockfighting.” Beginning with Calvin McCard’s opposition to the holding of UFC IIX in San Juan, Puerto Rico, politicians began to take notice of the negative aspects of the sport. Most notable among these was Arizona Senator John McCain. McCain, an avid and lifelong boxing enthusiast, was horrified when he was shown a tape of an early UFC. He sparked a letter writing campaign to prevent UFC IIX, but the event went on despite his opposition. McCain’s next target was Colorado, the intended site of UFC IX, which also went on despite strong opposition, but with new rules. Following UFC IX, John McCain targeted the cable pay-per-view providers to encourage them to drop the UFC. He encouraged Neil Henry, a personal friend of Senator McCain’s, and the owner of TCI, the pay-per-view provider that was hosting the UFC’s events to drop the UFC from his service. Senator McCain also sat on the FCC commission, which had much say over Mr. Henry’s business. Mr. Henry voiced many of the opinions that Senator McCain and other opponents of the UFC had been voicing up until that point. Mr. Henry and Senator McCain believed the sport was “too brutal,” and that “to hit a man when he was down was un-American.” Other opponents of the sport believed that the sport raised serious moral issues, in that it encouraged two participants to enter a cage, or ring and seriously injure or maim one another.

The claims against the sport that were based on the health and safety of its participants seem to be widely based on misunderstanding. First, a sort of cultural determinism seems to have influenced the opponents of the sport of mixed martial arts. Unlike Japan and Brazil where mixed martial arts have a long history of popular acceptance, American society’s only experience with a mainstream combat sport is with that of boxing. Under the Marques of Queensbury rules, boxing only permits punches thrown to the head and body, unlike mixed martial arts which permits punches and kicks to all areas of the body with the exception of the groin, neck and back of the head, as well as knees and elbow strikes, takedowns, throws, and submissions.

Also, in boxing, the participants wear large padded gloves, whereas in mixed martial arts, the participants wear only minimally padded gloves. On the surface, this would make the sport of mixed martial arts seem significantly more dangerous, but in reality, it is actually safer. The heavily padded gloves used in boxing are actually employed to protect the boxers’ hands, not their opponents’ face and body. This allows the boxer to throw more punches to the head and body of his opponent than mixed martial artists, as mixed martial arts gloves do not protect the wearer’s hands as much as boxing gloves. In addition to the lower level of padding used in mixed martial arts gloves, the greater volume of techniques that can be employed in mixed martial arts actually make the sport safer as well. In the words of professional mixed martial artist John Rallo,

“After all the goal in boxing is to punch you opponent in the head until he is unconscious. This is not the goal in our sport. There are many other ways to win. Since 1900 their have been over 1000 documented deaths in boxing. There has been 1 in MMA in 70 years. That was in Russia at an unsanctioned event. Ironically the death was caused by strikes to the head.”

Mr. Rallo’s claim about the sheer volume of deaths in the history of the sport boxing is substantiated by numerous reports, most notable of these is the Manuel Vasquez Boxing Fatality Collection. The Vasquez Collection is a documentation of all reported deaths in the sport of boxing since 1900. The list compiled by Vasquez, and continually updated since his death, now contains 1,157 names. Ironically, one such death in the sport of boxing, the 1995 death of Jimmy Garcia, was witnessed by Senator John McCain, as he sat ringside. Strangely, Senator McCain remains a fan of boxing, a sport with a marred safety record, and over 1,000 recorded deaths in a little over 100 years, but he continues to be an opponent of the sport of mixed martial arts, which has not had a serious injury in the recorded history of the sport. In comparison to many sports that are widely and popularly accepted in American culture, including football, cheerleading, hockey, boxing and basketball, mixed martial arts is relatively safe. The numerous ways in which a fight can end in a mixed martial arts event, the great deal of safety precautions taken by promoters, and the attentiveness of mixed martial arts referees, who can end the fight at any time they see fit are all reasons why there have been no serious injuries in the recorded history of sanctioned mixed martial arts events. The effect that the various ways in which a mixed martial arts fight can end have on the safety of the sport is illustrated by John Rallo in his statement that:

“…it is honorable to tap in our sport. If you quit in a boxing match you may not fight again. Look at Roberto Duran after the "no mas" match with Ray Leonard. He was looked down upon and never regained his edge after that fight. A KO is not the only means of victory. The average boxer takes several hundred blows to the head in a winning performance. In MMA I have been in fights and not even taken one punch. If you take down your opponent and finish the fight on the ground you greatly reduce the chances of being KO'ed or even hit at all. Obviously there are injuries. This is a contact sport. But the injuries are no more severe then those suffered by collegiate wrestlers or football players.”

Even in the case of mixed martial arts events that are held on Indian Reservations, or in casinos where sanctioning bodies are not present, and the events are not monitored, such as Rob Braniff’s Freestyle Fighting Championship, it is still commonplace that the methods of business, safety measures employed and the ethical measures taken far surpass the rules and regulations set out by the sanctioning bodies of outlying areas.

Another major argument against the sport of mixed martial arts is that it is immoral, and goes against the morals that are considered part of the “American way of life.” Opponents of the sport question the sport’s morality, as it requires two opponents to enter a ring or cage with the intention of hurting or injuring one another. Another moral argument against the sport is that striking a downed opponent is “un-American.” Proponents of the sport strongly disagree with these allegations. Proponents of the sport strongly disagree with these allegations. One such proponent, John McCarthy emphasizes that the fighters in mixed martial arts do not fight to inflict pain on one another, rather they fight for the sake of competition. He states that all of the fighters that he has talked to about this issue say that when they fight, it is all about the sport, and that it is more an issue of dominance, like a game of chess, rather than one of inflicting pain on another human being. In this vein, Mr. McCarthy says that the ethics of mixed martial arts are the same as those of other widely accepted sports, such as football or hockey, where inflicting pain on the competition is merely a part of the sport, not the ends of competing. Professional mixed martial artist John Rallo reinforces this. Mr. Rallo says that when he fights:

“I feel respect for my opponents. They trained just as hard to beat me as I did to beat them. You can't underestimate anyone in this sport. One mistake and the fight is over. My emotional state is probably nervous…As for getting into the ring to harm my opponent this is not true. I am getting in the ring to win the competition. Unlike boxing, I can use submissions to defeat my opponent. Since competitors can honorably tap out usually nothing more is injured then pride. If you know them well it does complicate things a bit. But it is a sport. It is not personal. After the match is over you get up shake each other’s hand and continue to be friends.”

As for the morals of the sport of mixed martial arts being un-American, this statement too is refutable. Though the United States of America was founded on the principle of religious freedom, it is quite easily recognized that the founding of the United States of America and its government had a heavy Christian influence. This manifests itself in many ways, even to this day. It can be seen in everything from American currency, which bears the statement “In God We Trust,” to the Pledge of Allegiance, which proclaims the United States of America to be “One nation under God,” and these are just two of many examples of the imprint that Judeo-Christian beliefs and morals have on the United States. Since the American way of life and the morals that comprise it have their roots in the Judeo-Christian belief system, it would be difficult for the opponents of mixed martial arts to level a moral argument against the sport, since the first book of the Holy Bible (which happens to be part of the religious scripture for not only Christian religions, but Judaism, and Islam) features a tale of a mixed martial arts style competition between Jacob and God. Genesis 32 tells the story of how Jacob grappled with God at Peniel for the duration of a night. When the night was over, Jacob had dislocated his hip, and for his refusal to submit, or “tap out” in mixed martial arts terminology, God blessed Jacob.

Currently, mixed martial arts is the fastest growing sport in the United States of America. Its fans and participants can be found all over the country, and in all walks of life. They represent every race, creed and class of people in the United States. They are teachers, police officers, attorneys, truck drivers, accountants, laborers, ministers, soldiers, doctors, students, and family members. They are as much American as the fans and athletes involved in any other sport that is popularly and culturally accepted by the people of the United States of America. They are not savages, barbarians or criminals, nor are they a collection of social deviants and miscreants as people like John McCain would have the voting public believe. They are simply people who enjoy a sport that is misunderstood and as a result, feared and hated.

As the fan base of the sport continues to expand and grow, the sport will receive more attention as it edges closer to mainstream American culture. Currently, UFC events are covered in USA Today, and the Fox Sports Network, which has aired several fights from UFC events on its network, and ESPN airs similar competitions as part of its regular line up. It is only a matter of time before the sport of mixed martial arts is a mainstream sport which will rival boxing, but in order for the sport to gain mainstream acceptance, the public must be educated on the sport. As long as the terrible misconceptions that are associated with the sport continue to permeate society, misguided opposition to the sport will exist based on these misconceptions and irrational ideas. Only with education will the society ever fully accept the sport of mixed martial arts. Until the public can be educated, the sport will remain a fringe oddity to some members of the population, and will continue to be considered in the same vein as “extreme” sports, though it could achieve much greater things. The potential for the success of the sport exists, as evidenced by the widespread acceptance and monetary gains the sport has gained in both Japan and Brazil. It is only a matter of time before the sport of mixed martial arts sweeps the United States.

Hmmm... is there a "Coles Notes" condensed version? :D

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Hmmm... is there a "Coles Notes" condensed version? :D

Sorry... I realized after I hit "post" that it was way to long for a quote and should have been linked to.

Read it though! Its not THAT long :) And it talks about the same thing you were talking about... how the rules have been improved in order to make the sport more mainstream. Theres been massive changes in the last ten years.

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The real problem is the continued head punching while the opponent is pinned down. I think the fight should be declared over at that point, not allowed to continue until the guy is knocked out. As John McCain says, it's barbaric and un-American. That's not necessarily a reason to disallow it, depending on your point of view and values. If you're a liberal, anything goes as long as it sells.

Since 1900 their have been over 1000 documented deaths in boxing. There has been 1 in MMA in 70 years.

I think this could be misleading. It's one thing to compare the number of deaths in two sports over a period of years, quite another to compare them in the number of fights. And there is nothing "ironic" (as stated in the article) about the death that occurred due to repeated head shots. That is in fact precisely the problem.

From the article I quoted, seems that MMA is banned in almost every province in Canada. There should be a regulatory commission set up in the provinces, just as there are in the United States. Leaving the sport without binding commitment to rules leaves the fighters wide open to the dangers of permanent injury.

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That is an oversimplification of the issue. These people are professionals and their concerns are valid. MMA is a dangerous sport with the potential to kill, and it has killed.

There is a long list of sports and recreational activities that have killed more people than MMA. Hockey, football, and downhill skiing are included in that list.

Why does the BCMA think that bruises and broken limbs and concussions suffered during MMA events more worrisome than bruises and broken limbs and concussions suffered during hockey and football and downhill skiing?

Why are you more willing to take the word of the doctors who launched this move after treating a handful of superficial injuries after one event over the word of the medical institution that did a thorough study and concluded it's safer than boxing?

I think we both know the answer to those two questions.

Gillespie said the BCMA takes the position that MMA fights are more dangerous than boxing because of fewer safety rules.

“MMA allows a fighter to attack an opponent while down and we believe those things increase the risk of serious injury,” said Gillespie.

Gillespie is wrong that there are fewer safety rules. There are a lot more safety rules in MMA than in boxing. And referees are far more willing to stop fights in MMA than in boxing.

Gillespie is also wrong that the ground aspect of MMA increases the risk of injury. It's the opposite: the fighters are less likely to be injured during grappling.

Gillespie noted Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland and Labrador, Yukon and Nunavut have province-wide bans on contests, while New Brunswick has a ban on MMA fighting outside of Moncton.

Ontario just sanctioned MMA, so Gillespie is wrong again.

The move to have better rules and improved safety would be good for the MMA, because it will be accepted into the mainstream and have a wider audience, and so make more money.

As Dre points out, MMA has done exactly that over the past decade; it's unfortunate that underinformed people like Gillespie and yourself don't recognize it and continue to perpetuate the myth that it's "no rules cage-fighting".

And there you have it. The outcome of a reasonable debate should be something positive, not simply "No you fool, what the heck do you know."

You're a fine one to complain about the tone of the debate after opening with:

I heard it was being banned in Canada, too many fighters getting their brains beat out. Gee that's not surprising.

and offering the opinion that people who disagree with you have conned by UFC mouthpieces.

I think the replies you received were pretty polite, all things considered.

-k

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The real problem is the continued head punching while the opponent is pinned down. I think the fight should be declared over at that point, not allowed to continue until the guy is knocked out.

And that is pure unadulterated bullshit. When a fighter on the ground is no longer able to defend himself, the contest is stopped by the referee.

-k

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Do both opponents who enter the ring know what they are getting into? If so, then the rules are bunk.

We can look at death statistics for any sport and I will put money on it and say right now that MMA is low on the list.

http://www.sportingo.com/all-sports/a10042_ten-most-dangerous-sports-world

LOL

1. LAWN BOWLS: Forget those UFC pussies, lawn bowls is for REAL men (and women!). Going off the number of deaths per player, it is the world's most dangerous sport, killing literally thousands worldwide every year. Its hardcore competitors will stop at nothing in pursuit of victory. If you're one of the lucky ones that escapes death, there are thousands more who end up with dislocated ankles, broken hips, torn knees or who simply keel over with a heart attack or a stroke due to the incredibly stressful nature of the game. Either that or it's down to most of the competitors being over 85 and lugging great big balls around.

Hardcore baby.

In doing a search it seems that Cheer leading is very high on the injury list. Comes up as one of the most dangerous 'sports'.

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And that is pure unadulterated bullshit. When a fighter on the ground is no longer able to defend himself, the contest is stopped by the referee.

-k

Can you cite that rule please?

Many fighters who have the ability to "defend himself" are often knocked out in mma and boxing. So it is a basically meaningless statement unless you have something specific to add which provides clear boundaries for punching a grounded opponent.

And sitting on someone pounding their defended head is going to cause damage regardless not to mention being totally gutless.

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Can you cite that rule please?

Well, perhaps some of you idiots shouldn't be posting about a sport in which you don't know the rules.

A defenseless fighter cannot be hit over and over again. If a fighter is not appropriately defending himself, the fight is stopped.

Anyways, it seems to me like many of the anti-MMA posters are basing their opinions on what they've seen in movies or UFC during it's first few years. Things have changed a lot. The UFC is fully regulated, just like boxing. It's not anything goes, it's not even close to that. And in fact, most of the fights AREN'T BLOODY.

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The current rules for the Ultimate Fighting Championship were originally established by the New Jersey Athletic Control Board.[79] The "Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts" that New Jersey established has been adopted in other states that regulate mixed martial arts, including Nevada, Louisiana, and California. These rules are also used by many other promotions within the United States, becoming mandatory for those states that have adopted the rules, and so have become the standard de facto set of rules for professional mixed martial arts across the country.

Rules and Regulations

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Can you cite that rule please?

Many fighters who have the ability to "defend himself" are often knocked out in mma and boxing. So it is a basically meaningless statement unless you have something specific to add which provides clear boundaries for punching a grounded opponent.

And sitting on someone pounding their defended head is going to cause damage regardless not to mention being totally gutless.

The fighter on the end of such an exchange must be engaged in an "active defense". The stoppages usually come very quickly when that active defense isnt there, and the UFC gets a fair ammount of critisism for quick stoppages.

The fact is MMA fights are stopped often, and quickly, and the fighters can end a fight any time by tapping on the mat or the opponent. Serious head injuries are extremely rare.

And sitting on someone pounding their defended head is going to cause damage regardless not to mention being totally gutless.

Not really. You need to win the fight. And with the rise of Brazilian Jujitsu a lot of fights are actually won by the guy on the bottom. In fact I would say that when the guy on the top is the "full guard" of the guy on the bottom that position is basically a coin toss. Silva beat Sonnen from the bottom at UFC 118, and Fedor Emelianenko was beaten from the bottom a few weeks ago as well.

Fighting on the ground is just part of the sport. Its probably actually LESS dangerous than standing up and trading blows.

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And in fact, most of the fights AREN'T BLOODY.

Blood actually makes the sport safer, because suferficial wounds often result in stoppages. For example... In boxing the padded gloves result in less cuts and less bleeding. Thats a bad thing in terms of safety because the fights go longer and the fighters trade repetitive headshots. The WINNER will often recieve hundreds of blows to the head in a fight... never mind the loser. In the UFC hard blows result in cuts and cuts lead to stoppages. Many fights are decided without any hard blows to the head at all.

At the end of the day, the most dangerous aspect of combat sport both in terms of deaths and permanent injury is repetitive blows to the head. There is WAY WAY less of this in MMA for a whole number of reasons.

Opposition to MMA is almost completely cultural, and based on flawed perception. People think because it "looks" more dangerous than other sports that it is, but thats not the case. The biggest factor in this probably is that North America doesnt have a history of this type of fighting. Its new to people and they dont understand it yet, whereas its been huge in places like Japan, Russia, and Brasil, or decades.

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Blood actually makes the sport safer, because suferficial wounds often result in stoppages. For example... In boxing the padded gloves result in less cuts and less bleeding. Thats a bad thing in terms of safety because the fights go longer and the fighters trade repetitive headshots. The WINNER will often recieve hundreds of blows to the head in a fight... never mind the loser. In the UFC hard blows result in cuts and cuts lead to stoppages. Many fights are decided without any hard blows to the head at all.

I've seen a few fightsin MMA/UFC where the guy gets a couple good elbow blows to the top of his head. That's gotta do more damage than a boxing glove. Sure the number of hits are less, the severity of the hits in MMA are higher. I am speculating here.

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I've seen a few fightsin MMA/UFC where the guy gets a couple good elbow blows to the top of his head. That's gotta do more damage than a boxing glove. Sure the number of hits are less, the severity of the hits in MMA are higher. I am speculating here.

Yes, thats the perception and it "seems" reasonable. But when you look at the data out there, the most common head injuries come not from a specific blow, but the accumulative effect of many hundreds or thousands of repetitive blows that shake the brain around inside the skull.

Those elbows to the head you mentioned are brutal Ill give you that. But a few of those will cause a stoppage. Youre not going to see a high volume of those kind of shots. But theres rules to deal with that as well. You can only use FOREARM elbows on a grounded opponent. Thats a side-side motion where the forearm makes contact. You cannot use "Spiked" elbows where the force is transfered directly downwards and the tip of the elbow makes contact. Never the less there IS obviously injuries. Iv been broken orbital bones, and broken noses in this scenario.

MMA is full contact sport. Its dangerous and theres going to be injuries including the odd serious one, and possibly some deaths as well. But its comparable in to other contact sports like American Football, and its quite bit safer than boxing.

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I personally am not at all a fan of these sports. However, I see no reason to outlaw sports, including violent sports, so long as the participants are willing and understand the risks. I don't see any reason to believe that that is not the case. If some dudes want to fight each other and other dudes want to watch, fine by me. Yes, there might be injuries, maybe even deaths, but the participants understand and accept the risks. People participate in activities that present risk of injury or death all the time. Do I need to pull out the tired stats about car accident deaths? Risk of injury and death is just a normal part of life.

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A classic case of liberal degeneracy syndrome

In Bonam's case I think it's more like libertarian degeneracy :)

But it's a valid point: if we're talking about banning something because it's offensive to some people, or some people find it gross or icky or degenerate, then we're talking about banning everything from gay sex to alcoholic beverages to dealcoholized beer to rock and roll records to short skirts. Who wants to get into a game of line-drawing like that?

-k

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In Bonam's case I think it's more like libertarian degeneracy :)

Libertarian yes I suppose. Dunno where the degeneracy comes in :)

But it's a valid point: if we're talking about banning something because it's offensive to some people, or some people find it gross or icky or degenerate, then we're talking about banning everything from gay sex to alcoholic beverages to dealcoholized beer to rock and roll records to short skirts. Who wants to get into a game of line-drawing like that?

Indeed. But the more specific point I was trying to make is that it seems the main argument people have made against these particular sports is that they pose a risk of injury. But people partake in countless other such sports all the time. Climbing, skiing/snowboarding, autoracing, and pretty much anything classified as an "extreme sport" carries substantial risks. Should we then ban all of these? Should we just lock people up in their houses and not let them come out in case they might accidentally trip on the porch and hurt themselves?

I value freedom far more highly than having the government try to keep me safe from the consequences of my own choices.

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Indeed. But the more specific point I was trying to make is that it seems the main argument people have made against these particular sports is that they pose a risk of injury. But people partake in countless other such sports all the time. Climbing, skiing/snowboarding, autoracing, and pretty much anything classified as an "extreme sport" carries substantial risks. Should we then ban all of these? Should we just lock people up in their houses and not let them come out in case they might accidentally trip on the porch and hurt themselves?

I value freedom far more highly than having the government try to keep me safe from the consequences of my own choices.

The "safety" argument is a sham. Those opposed to MMA won't-- and can't-- explain why cuts and broken bones and concussions suffered in MMA matches are cause for a ban while cuts and broken bones and concussions suffered in hockey or football or skiing are not.

A competitive skateboarder was killed right in Vancouver this summer. Where's the BCMA outrage?

-k

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The "safety" argument is a sham.

Yeah I suspect it is mostly a cover/justification for their real reason for opposing fighting sports, which is that they look down on them as barbaric/disgusting. Such subjective moral notions shouldn't be the basis of laws that reduce people's freedoms to participate in activities they like. Although there are a few whose main motivation really is the safety argument (and want to ban skiing, football, and everything else too), and those people are even worse than the previous category, because they genuinely believe that the government should control how people live so as not to hurt themselves.

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