WCCO's Mark Rosen is reporting that Scott LeDoux, former boxer and Anoka County commissioner, has passed away after a long fight with ALS.
Rest in Peace.
I've been an avid boxing fan my entire life, and have expanded my interest to the MMA.
Less and less in the nfl (unless the Vikings are doing well, of course).
These guys almost always die well before the average life expectancy, or are severely debilitated by brain damage.
They in effect kill themselves for money and fame, and hopefully for the joy that comes from winning, or at least doing something well.
I wonder if in some distant - or not so distant - future, history will look back on us and wonder how we could have permitted such brutality for entertainment.
Much in the way we now look at gladiator competitions in terms of sport. Or dueling in terms of honor.
Of course there is the libertarian "personal freedom" argument, especially when participation can be so profitable monetarily.
I don't know. I just wonder.
A libertarian response to your comment would be yes, Scott and others who engage in other bloodsports make the choice to do so. Making boxing illegal would not stop it, just push it underground.
More importantly a libertarian might point out your contradiction "I've been an avid boxing fan my entire life, and have expanded my interest to the MMA" and then "wonder how we could have permitted". Boxing, drugs, prostitution, abortion, pornography are all markets with buyers and sellers. If you find a market that you find objectionable the first step is to not be a buyer not to regulate the sellers.
We don't know whether boxing causes ALS; lots of people who don't box get ALS. We don't know if boxing caused Ali's Parkinson's -- lots of people who don't box get Parkinson's.
The death of a 62-year old boxer, however, presents bigger questions to me. What is the nature of risk, for example? Why do people climb mountains that could kill them?
We only get to do this once and the tragedy, it seems to me, is regret. Over the years, I haven't heard of any interview with Mr. LeDoux in which he regretted his life.
Matt - thanks for the clear, concise description of the libertarian view.
Sometimes I agree, sometimes I wonder. Depends on how good the fight is, I guess.
Do real live card-carrying libertarians wonder sometimes? (Yea, I know. A real libertarian would never consent to carrying a card) :-)