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Truly Unfit for a Civilized Society

Here’s a letter that I sent several days ago to the Boston Globe:

Like Peter Funt, I’m disturbed by the appeal of mixed martial arts (“The disturbing appeal of ‘human dogfighting’,” July 29).  But unlike Mr. Funt, I object to outlawing this sport, the brutality of which is inflicted only upon – and witnessed only by – consenting adults.

Far more disturbing to me than this sport is the inexplicable appeal of busybodiness – the eagerness of Jones to threaten coercion against Smith whenever Smith chooses, although violating no one’s rights, to act in ways that Jones disapproves of.  That species of brutality – coercive violence against non-coercive other persons – is truly disgusting and unacceptable and should have no place in a civilized society.

Donald J. Boudreaux

As my GMU colleague Dan Klein points out, it’s not violence that’s objectionable; what’s objectionable is coercion.