SPORT, part 2…
In my last blog post, I wrote about various activities known as SPORT — initiated, I suspect, by the furore surrounding renowned sportsman antivaxxer (later renamed by some as “NoVax”).
Continuing my thoughts on the definition of sport and its different modes — whether for personal enjoyment or for public display and $$$$$$, my mind turned to boxing.
I have always had a strong dislike for this ‘sport’, including confusion on how on earth boxing could ever be classed as SPORT.
To be called a winner after bashing someone into insensibility is hardly what I would consider SPORT.
At the end of a boxing round — or rounds — there’s the ‘champ’, with his hand held high in victory by the referee, while his opponent lies on the ‘canvas’, blood leaking from his broken nose and a cut over his left eyebrow. SPORT?
But there you are: People do it. People watch it. People even pay to see it. Each to his own, I suppose. But….?
Recently in Queensland there was a big horse thing called ‘Magic Millions’. There were a few horse races involved but apparently the ‘millions’ was to do with the selling and buying of racehorses.
I have written about the horse racing ‘industry’ before. I asked how many families keep horses in their backyard, as it had been reported that the racehorse breeding programs did not, (as some suggested) ‘eliminate’ unsuccessful horses as ‘waste’. “No”, they said, “we rehome all horses that are not used in the ‘industry’. All those horses go to homes where they are cared for lovingly…etc…”
Seeing that the rate of horse breeding results in hundreds of horses bred each and every year, far more than those used in racing, there must be thousands of suburban homes that ultimately home and care for one of these excess horses.
Do you have a horse in your backyard?
No? Me neither.
Similarly with greyhounds.
A couple of years ago it seemed to be popular – and dare I say, a fashionable thing, to own a ‘Rescued Greyhound’.
People walking proudly in the park with their svelte greyhounds seemed to emanate an air of superiority. “I saved this beautiful dog from death”, they implied. “Everyone should do this”.
But, then again, there are not hundreds of people walking greyhounds in every park.
The number of bred greyhounds, before ability tested and checked by breeders would be a great number annually. Considering numbers ultimately used in the greyhound ‘industry’, I imagine there would be many more ‘unwanted’ dogs than those few we see walking in the suburbs.
So, I suppose what I am saying about horse racing and greyhound racing is two-fold:
One, that it is debatable if these activities qualify as SPORT. And two, the amount of culling — cruelty, in other words — should be unacceptable.
To end on a more positive note concerning SPORT, I have to say that there are many sporting activities that are great.
In country communities especially, games of netball, tennis, basketball, soccer, cricket, softball, etcetera — even AFL (women and men) — keep towns together and the players healthy.
Activities such as swimming, cycling – even dancing - are all excellent ways to use your time and keep fit.
But I have a problem with some other activities referred to as SPORT.
If it’s primarily for money and adulation – even if it is an excellent skill, I am not sure if that is true SPORT.
I won’t even touch on the Olympics!
If it is using a machine or animal, more than human physical activity, then I am not sure if that constitutes a SPORT.
If the activity results in a person or an animal (animals?) being hurt or ‘eliminated’, then that should definitely not be considered a FAIR SPORT.
I may be wrong.
I choose to comment on social issues and write creatively on a variety of subjects - for a variety of audiences.