Mixed Martial Arts
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Mixed Martial Arts
First off mixed martial arts is what it sounds like. It is a session between two opponents who have trained or cross trained in martial arts. Although mixed martial arts in not a mainstream sport, there is no reason why it should be banned in any state here in the United States. Like most, if not all sports, there are rules that one most abide by , the fights are sanctioned, so rules must apply. There are regulations and weight classes much like other sports. Mixed martial arts is considered to be the ultimate fighting method. To be considered an accomplished fighter you have to have skills in striking, take downs, submissions, stamina, but most of all you need heart.
Mixed martial arts, or MMA, started back in the United States in 1993, and over 70 year ago in other countries. “The first mixed martial arts organization in the United States was the Ultimate Fighting Champion or UFC. Japans biggest mixed martial arts organization is PrideFC, which started back in 1997,” (Doty 13). These may be the two largest mixed martial arts companies in the world. Back then and still today mixed martial arts have been the subject of arguable political debate. The
people against mixed martial arts have had many arguments against the sport in the early to mid 90s. It even convinced several states to ban the sport. This was because when mixed martial arts first started there was little to no rules. This was a one-event night tournament, where any fighters that signed up would fight numerous matches in one night, in a single elimination style tournament until one champion was named. Two men entered an octagon arena and did whatever they had to do to knock out, or tap out their opponent. Mixed martial arts fighters could not bite, eye gouge, or fish hook, and fights could only end with a referees stoppage, a knock out, or submission (Royce 6). Basically it was a street fight without weapons. In 2001 a major factor in the comeback of the sport, and the return of the sport to pay-per-view was the employ of a new set of rules. The unified rules of mixed martial arts combat, as drafted in New Jersey, and later adopted in Nevada 2001 were a welcome change to the sport. “The new rules featured five weight classes, rounds, time limits, a list of over 31 fouls, and eight possible ways for the fight to end,”(Walter, grapplearts.com). The unified rules of mixed martial arts combat have become the standard rules of not only the UFC, but of most major mixed martial arts promotions in the United States, such as king of the cage. MMA has now been adopted by many states, including New Jersey, Nevada, Florida, California and Louisiana. In order to understand why it was
necessary for the sport to adopt the unified rules of mixed martial arts combat, it is necessary to question the exact arguments that have been leveled at the sport. The sport has been called “barbaric” and labeled as “human cockfighting”(Doty 64). Beginning with Calvin McCards opposition to the holding of UFC IIX in San Juan, Puerto Rico; politicians began to take notice of the negative aspects of the sport. Most notable among these was Arizona Senator John McCain. McCain, a devoted and lifelong boxing fan, was shocked when he was shown a tape of an early UFC. He started a letter writing campaign to prevent UFC IIX, but the event went on despite his opposition. McCains next target was Colorado, the intended site of UFC IX, which also went on despite strong opposition, but with new rules. Following UFC IX, John McCain targeted the cable pay-per-view providers to persuade them to drop the UFC. He encouraged Neil Henry, the pay-per-view provider that was hosting the UFCs events to drop the UFC from his service. Senator McCain also sat on the FCC commission, which had much say over Neils business. Neil voiced many of the opinions that Senator McCain and other opponents of the UFC had been voicing up until that point. Neil and Senator McCain believed the sport was too brutal, and that to hit a man when he was down was un-American. Now in 2005 John McCain would have a field day of what is going on in media, music, television, and the internet. Other opponents of the sport supposed that the
sport had serious moral issues, in that it encouraged two-mixed martial artist to enter a cage, or ring and badly harm or injure one another.
The claims not in favor of the sport that were based on the health and safety of its participants seem to be commonly based on misunderstanding. First, a sort of civilizing seems to have influenced the opponents of the sport of mixed martial arts. Unlike Japan and Brazil where mixed martial arts have a long history of popular approval, American societies only knowledge with a mainstream combat sport is boxing (Doty 33). Under the marques