Check out this news feature on Kimbo Slice from a local CBS affiliate in Florida. I’m not going to go as far as the reporter and suggest Kimbo is a soft, hugable teddy bear. But Kimbo is truly something unique that I find quite admirable in many ways. The general perception of Kimbo is that he’s “street” and therefore “thug”, “brut”, and “violent”. That’s fair to a certain extent, but that description has all the subtlety and nuance of a two by four to the face.
I’ve never seen Kimbo demonstrate any hatred toward any of his opponents. He’s there merely to do his job and collect his check. It’s a dirty job, but it’s also an agreement entered into by two consenting adults. He doesn’t take anyone’s lunch money or snatch old ladies’ purses. He’s there because he was asked to show up. Moreover, Kimbo is actually a decent sportsman. For a street fighter, he’s awfully good about giving his opponents recovery time and not kicking them when down. And while his contests don’t have the application of state-sanctioned rigorous rules, he does stick to a few guidelines that make his fights clearly a matter of choice for his opponents. In fairness, part of this stems from his confidence since he’s well aware he’s fighting people who have virtually no chance against him. The important feature here, though, is that what Kimbo does is dangerous and certainly not anything I’d recommend to anyone, but it’s also morally defensible.
He could adopt a few more safety precautions for my tastes, such as fighting on dirt instead of pavement or perhaps seeking out better competition. But whatever the case, Kimbo Slice isn’t hurting or bothering anyone that doesn’t want to be bothered. He’s making a living by using his hands – quite literally. There is a real John Wayne-esque nobility packed into his choice of occupation. Again, he could be a little more cautious about his fighting arrangements, but if you’re asking me to condemn what he does at reprehensible or ghoulish, don’t hold your breath.
HT: Lay and Pray
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