Look around and tell me if you like what you see.
Here’s what I see, and I don’t like it: I see the unavoidable evidence that we live in a world that increasingly confuses the bizarre for the entertaining, the outrageous for the significant. With television and the Internet as our voyeuristic guides, we keep getting larger doses of the twisted “realities” of over-the-hill rap stars, dysfunctional brides, celebrities in rehab, ostentatious suburban housewives and a wild menagerie of other mindless idiots who are willing to go wild and expose themselves for their slice of 15 minutes of fame.
Welcome to the American Apocalypse, a dark and sad place that celebrates the absurd and the obscene and can’t tell the difference between good ratings and good taste. Like the culmination of a 23-year-old prophecy (or is it life imitating art?), look how we have descended into this Mad Max-like world, where society has bottomed out and snarling men in cages battle in a blood-sport feast.
Jumping headlong into this disturbing abyss comes the CBS television network, which Saturday night broadcast the first of three primetime events it calls “EliteXC Saturday Night Fights.”
It might as well have been called “Barroom Brawls After Dark,” “Aunty Entity’s Saturday Night Dance Thunderdome Party”, or “Don’t Go Down That Alley ‘Cause You Might Get Your Head Cracked,” because whatever this is, it sure isn’t in the same realm with boxing. This is boxing like the demolition derby is auto racing. It’s more closely associated with pro wrestling with one notable exception: wrasslin’s fake. The mayhem that goes on in mixed martial arts is not.
The MMA apologists call that its appeal.
I call that it’s fatal flaw. Mixed Martial Arts wants the world to sanction its underworld barbarism as legitimate. But no matter which form of this “sport” you look at, it ought to be hard to stomach for anyone with even the faintest grain of civility. This crazed violence allows men with thinly padded leather on their fists to pummel each other nonstop, even when your opponent is on the ground. It allows you to send knees into your opponent’s midsection (“Ooops, was that your groin?”), kick them in the face, and while he’s laying on the ground, continue to pound him with elbows, fists and feet.
That’s not “art.”
That’s street brawling.
I’ve complained about this before, and predictably the MMA loyalists have a few typical replies:
Let’s clear a few things up.
All I want is for someone to realize what a distasteful freak show mixed martial arts is in these bastardized forms. What I want is for sane folks to slow down this gradual slide into a post-Apocalypic haze where the absolute worst elements of human nature are sanctioned and celebrated.
What I want is for us to stop glorifying the most deviant aspects of our own personalities, the ones where pit bulls, roosters and human beings can be gored, gouged and brutalized for sport, and where intelligence is a fault and the dumbing down of our society is considered a point of pride.
Video: MMA from NBC Sports
Cavalcante didn't want fight to stop
After losing his fight with Justin Gaethje due to a deep cut above his left eye, Gesias Cavalcante talks about the decision to stop the fight. Cavalcante says he was ready to continue the fight before the doctors made the call.
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