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December 21, 1994

Let's Stop Boxing in the Olympics and the US Military

Author Affiliations

Southern Illinois University Eye Center Springfield

JAMA. 1994;272(23):1821. doi:10.1001/jama.1994.03520230031028

To the Editor.  —I am writing to applaud Dr Lundberg's efforts to eliminate boxing in civilized countries.1I am sure his latest Editorial suggesting that boxing be eliminated from the Olympics and no longer sponsored by the US military will be no less controversial. Proponents of boxing in the armed forces in general and at the service academies in particular argue that boxing develops physical courage while teaching the boxer how to surmount fear. However, at the US Military Academy the female cadets do not box, but rather participate in martial arts instruction. If boxing is such an integral part of leadership development, then certainly these women are not getting the full benefit of their West Point education.The alleged benefits of boxing need to be weighed against the definite medical risks associated with participation. I have been a singular unpopular voice calling for the elimination of boxing in