Today's Pantagraph (April 20, 2019) sports section has three boxing matches scheduled. This brutal, barbaric sport should be banned.

The objective in boxing is to hurt the opponent — to inflict as much harm as possible in a three-minute round. Much of the harm is to the head, which occurs from the blows administered by both boxers to each other. These blows cause brain concussions, which have lasting effects.

The popular heavyweight boxer Muhammed Ali is an example of the effects of concussive blows, which were felt after his boxing days were over. Three years into his retirement from boxing at age 42, he was experiencing tremors, slowness of movement, slurred speech and unexplained fatigue. The damage to Ali's brain was permanent and continued into his old age.

Serious as brain concussions were to Ali and other boxers, this sport has proved fatal to others. Here is a short list: Brad Bone died in the ring at the end of the first round; this was in 2003. Choi Yo-Sam, Korean world champion, died after brain surgery following 12 rounds in 2008. Benjamin Flores, Mexican, 2009, taken from the ring on a stretcher, died from a massive brain injury. Frankey Campbell, heavyweight boxer, died after the fifth round in a bout with Max Baer in 1930.

Since permanent brain damage is an occupational hazard for boxers, the sport should be banned.

William Frinsko, Normal


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