Violence in Sports - an Ethical Perspective

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Violence in sport has become far too commonplace. Aggressive sports such as football and hockey involve many aggressive tactics; however far too often do these aggressive tactics become overshadowed by deliberate acts of violence with the intent to cause bodily harm to an opponent. Many professional and non-profession athletes, as well as coaches, have adapted the mentality that winning is the common goal that all who participate in sport strive for and therefore feel that engaging in violent acts while competing should be permitted in achieving this goal. In sport winning is what each athlete strives for and seemingly they will consign in harmful acts of violence to achieve their goal. Former Boston Bruins player David Forbes was quoted “…show more content…
For an athlete to be above the law simply because he or she is an athlete is irrational. However, “the public has gotten fed up with athletes crossing the violent lines, both on and off the court, and that may contribute to police entering the sanctuary”, (Lapchick, 2000 p.1). If indeed the police begin to get involved when acts of violence are performed by athletes on and off the court, violence and physical aggression may not be as commonplace in the future as they are today. Irrational as it may be for sport to have its own sanctuary atmosphere in terms of the legal system, we as a society must question why we ultimately allow for this to occur. During the 2003- 2004 National Hockey League season Todd Bertuzzi of the Vancouver Canucks viciously attacked unsuspecting Colorado Avalanche forward Steve Moore. The attack left Moore with a broken neck which ultimately ended his NHL career. Although Bertuzzi was suspended for the remainder of the season and his team was fined $250,000 no criminal charges were laid. One can only wonder how an unprovoked attack on an unsuspecting victim which ultimately ended a career due to a broken neck cannot be treated as a criminal offense. The Bertuzzi incident is an ideal example which illustrates how our society allows professional athletes to advocate themselves above the law. The problem of violence in sport can be discussed using the sub branches of the Social Conflict Theory of sociology. The Social Conflict Theory of sociology
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