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Letters | Lessons in the ring

Boosting youth is admirable, but must boxing be the method?

In “BoB. Weave. Spar. Study (G section, May 14), Paul Doyle says that boxing is a metaphor for life.

Boxing may also be an exercise in Russian roulette.

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A single blow to the head can kill or severely injure. More insidious is the damage caused over time by repeated blows to the head, even those that are subconcussive. The cumulative injury can lead to chronic traumatic encephalopathy.

Doctors around the world oppose the sport of boxing. In 1983, the World Medical Association called for a ban, as did the Journal of the American Medical Association. The journal’s editor at the time, Dr. George Lundberg, still urges an end to the barbaric sport whose goal is to inflict maximum harm on the opponent.

Norway and Iceland have listened. We should listen, at least, to the Australian Medical Association, American Academy of Pediatrics, and Canadian Paediatric Society, all of which oppose boxing for a child or adolescent.

Our youth need activities that foster a positive self-image and nurture life skills, but not at the expense of their physical well-being.

Sally Ann Connolly


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