Turning the Mirror on Ourselves
By Jason Petock, DoghouseBoxing (Aug 30, 2009)  
Is it just me or have you ever noticed that the majority of the time when you read about boxing these days it’s mainly sensationalistic drivel written by someone who claims to be a “fan” or “pundit” of boxing, when all the while all they tend to do is rip fighters and their performances to shreds? No longer highlighting the positive aspects of the sport, these “experts” tend to rely on sensationalism and ridiculous finger pointing and name calling to get their “points” (if you can even call them that) across. Sitting high upon on their porcelain thrones, these journalistic leeches only true purpose in their writing is to bash, deface, and assault boxing and everything it stands for while they spout idiocy from their scripts. No longer are there the boxing writers who would glorify and acknowledge fighters for what they do in the ring, and if there are a few writers of such temperament these days, their numbers are few and far between. People don’t want to read about how good a fighter is doing, they want to criticize and berate a pugilist’s performance, and stand on their soapbox for the entire world to see, when half the time they don’t even know what the hell they are talking about to begin with.
Don’t get me wrong, I have never been a boxing “expert” and never claimed to be. I’m simply a fan who is trying to preserve the nature of boxing, if that is even remotely possible these days. I don’t go on the message boards ever to post anything, although I do read all of the negative shit and garbage that is posted on a routine basis by people who dare to call themselves “fans”. It is these very individuals who are destroying the sport and its popularity with their incessant negativity and bullshit. It is these people who say boxing is dead, that fights are boring, and that fighters suck. If anyone wants to look anywhere for what is eating away at boxing, they need to look no further than the closest mirror they can find. Combine this with bad decisions (i.e. – most recently the Malignaggi vs. Diaz debacle), biased referees, and a public disdain for the sport in general and you truly have a recipe for disaster in the making, and a serious problem for the sport of boxing.

Negativity is a way of life these days, and it’s an ugly bedfellow of boxing. Boxing’s cruel mistress tends to be in the limelight all the time. Substance gives way to sensationalism, depth to hype, lies to truth. As the days turn to weeks, and the weeks years, boxing suffers blow after blow from the very people who are supposed to be its friends and pretend to support it so much. As a betraying public twists the knife further and further into boxings chest, the sport struggles to find its breath, gasping for air as a crowd of “fans” holds its head under water until the desire to breathe and its penchant for life almost disappears and fades into oblivion. Boxing’s blood is on your hands public, and if you choose to continue to do what you’ve been doing, meaning “fans”, promoters, referees, and anyone else involved who doesn’t have boxing’s best interest at heart, then you will be responsible for the possible erasure of a sport that some of us still revere and hold close to our hearts.

Since when did it become alright for everyone to slam the sport on a continual basis? With the advent of technology and its subsequent progression, writers have popped up all over, some like blossoming flowers and others like earth ravaging stink weeds. No longer is there anything of substance written, and when it is written its criticized and dismissed as much as boxing has been, by those whose only purpose in reading it (although we all know they just skim it, and find the parts they don’t like) is to pick it apart and offer their two cents of negativity about how wrong the writer is, how much that fighter sucks, or how that writer knows nothing about boxing, along with any other insults, slams, or ignorant statements that the person can think of with their tiny minds to try to rile and provoke the writer who is actually trying to propel the sport past such infantile attitudes.

I am sure I will get a lot of hate mail for this article, and to be honest with you I could care less at this point. Honesty tends to be something that is really frowned upon in boxing journalism, that is of course unless its coated with a heaping dose of sensationalism and negativity, then it’s alright and acceptable. Here are few suggestions to those of you out there that resemble the lack of character that I have outlined in this write-up. If you don’t like boxing then don’t watch it, you not only waste your time but also ours with your opinions about how much it sucks. If you feel the need to constantly trash someone who you feel isn’t performing at the level that you deem worthy, put a pair of gloves on yourself, step into the ring, and see how much easier it is fighting in the ring than from your desktop. And most importantly, quit saying boxing is dead. While you may want this to be a self-fulfilling prophecy and you are doing all you can to make this a reality it will never happen. Boxing is rich in tradition and was here long before you existed and will be here long after you have turned to dust. You can count on that.

Jason at:

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