Not all Bostonians are excited to have the UFC Fight Night 26: Mauricio Rua vs. Chael Sonnen in their city, especially when it comes to the children having access to the event. Boston City Council President Stephen Murphy made it clear he is not a fan of mixed martial arts and what he believes it teaches children.
The councilman recently sponsored a citywide petition that would ban minors from attending mixed martial arts events within Boston. The ban would keep children from the event even if parents or guardians over the age of 18 accompanied them.
On NECN's “The Morning Show,” Murphy made his feelings on the combat sport clear:
I filed a resolution not so much for the behavior in the cage, as the behavior outside of the ring of some of the stars of the UFC and there haven't been sanctions. They are all over YouTube and the internet which is a great source of information for kids. They are promoting violence against women, teaching kids how to rape and stuff that is way over the top, the behavior. There has been no official sanction from UFC, the governing body that employs all these guys.
The YouTube video the councilman implicated in his statement was one made by former light heavyweight champion Quinton Jackson. The former champ made a tongue-in-cheek video regarding how to pick up women wherein he mockingly used chloroform. Jackson later admitted the piece was made to try and get himself fired from the UFC.
Subsequent rape-related, or otherwise insensitive, remarks made by UFC fighters have come with suspensions, firings and/or fines from the company. Such comments include a television reference involving a rape van made by former bantamweight contender Miguel Torres and abusive comments against a transgender individual made by heavyweight Matt Mitrione.
The petition pushed by Murphy is backed by the Culinary Union, the same group fighting to keep the UFC out of New York. Dana White has already dismissed the social concerns of individuals like Councilman Murphy, as there appear to be no concerns over other violent sports such as boxing or football within the city or state.
While the comments are sure to rile up some UFC/MMA fans, the councilman is not wholly ignorant to the positive aspects of the sport as well.
"It's great for discipline, physical training and these guys are athletes. On one level, it's really professional. It's the level that I'm talking about, the social behavior, the anti-social behavior."