Irresponsible reporting on kids grappling by Daily Mail
Hi guys, I don't usually post but I thought you guys would like to comment on this...
Basically, the kids were having a grappling match. They make it sound like they were being forced into death matches or something...
It says they arent allowed to strike, but then says they were brawling. BARE KNUCKLE!
Its on the Daily Mail's front page, as well as being link to on the Drudge report, so it will get a ton of views.
Maybe some of you would like to leave a comment on their website, offering a better reflection of the sport.
The headline is:
"As the crowd roars, cage fighters aged 8 and 9 do battle... even after one breaks down in tears"
Here is the text...
Kicking, shoving and grappling each other to the floor, children as young as eight compete in cage fighting contests in front of a baying mob of adults enjoying a night’s entertainment.
These shocking images show the primary school-age boys fighting with no padding, headguards or protection of any kind in what critics have described as ‘like a circus performance’.
The youngsters have been trained to wrestle their opponents into submission as their fathers, pint glasses in hand, look on.
Unlike adult contestants, they are not, in theory, allowed to punch, kick, knee or elbow each other during the competitions, but the rules are inevitably broken.
In these pictures, nine-year-old Kian MacKinson, who has been cage fighting for nine months, is shown brawling with an eight-year-old, whose father has asked for him to remain anonymous.
The boy of eight was left in tears in the middle of one of the terrifying ten-minute bouts before he was attended to by medics to check he could continue.
Last night, appalled doctors and child safety campaigners said the lack of headguards could cause brain injury or death and called for the ‘sick and disturbing’ practice to be banned.
Rosie Carter, from the Safechild children’s charity, said: ‘This is sick, absolutely disgraceful and I would call on social services to step in.
‘I can’t believe the parents are allowing their young children to participate in this barbarity.’
A spokesman for the British Medical Association said: ‘Boxing and cage fighting are sometimes defended on the grounds that children learn to work through their aggression with discipline.
‘The BMA believes there are many other sports which require discipline but do not pose the same threat of brain injury.’ The event took place at the Greenlands Labour Club in Preston and was organised by joiner and professional cage fighter Steven Nightingale.
The 28-year-old said the sport is safe and growing in popularity among children.
He added: ‘Competitions start from the age of five it is definitely a big up-and-coming sport.’
Asked about the young boy who was crying during one bout, he said: ‘The kid has never been beaten before, he is the one who wins the gold medals. When they get beaten, they are going to get emotional.’
Father-of-three Nick Hartley, 33, whose nine-year-old son Kian fought at the social club, defended the event. ‘None of the children were ever in danger,’ he claimed. ‘There is no harm in cage fighting at all.
‘If he wasn’t cage fighting, he would probably be chucking stones at buses and giving people grief. But now he has learned some respect and he would rather go training than play out.’
There is no suggestion any of the bouts at the event, which took place earlier this month, breached any rules or licence laws.
Michelle Anderson, owner of Greenlands Labour Club, who attended the event, said: ‘There was nothing wrong with it.
‘The parents were there. Would people rather these kids were out on the streets with guns and knives?’
Cage fighting, also known as mixed martial arts, encompasses a wide range of martial arts which are performed in circular cages. The sport has become popular partly due to reality star Alex Reid, its most high-profile figure in the UK.
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