The idea of enacting brutal acts of violence for the “pleasure of the audience” has been prevalent in human history since the time of the Romans, the only “advancement” that has been made since then is that instead of having gladiators fight to death, the subjects of torture are now animals. It is surprising that anybody gets pleasure from watching cockfights and dogfights, for the common man finds these acts atrocious and immoral and they have a sense that these acts are not only brutal, but they are also immoral and erroneous.
George Will in his “The Barbarity of Boxing” discusses how these acts have magnified in severity over the years, yet not much action has been taken to fix it. George Will’s diction prognosticates the uncivilized decorum in boxing matches. He uses words such as “banged” and “beaten up” to evoke a sense of pity for the boxers.
He uses these words of harsh consequences to depict the downright brutal sense of boxing today. A recurring theme is prevalent in Will’s writing; he says that watching boxing and such acts of violence are injurious and perilous to ones health and should not be viewed for the purpose of hilarity.He even goes on to describe the logistics of the game. He says that it is a nefarious and heinous sport that is a unpleasant for the players themselves, for not only are they completely vulnerable to the punches of others, the padding in the gloves that is supposed to make the punches lighter also further exacerbates them. Will even goes so far as to aver that the audience is given an injurious covetousness for blood by the sport of boxing.
George vivifies “how hard an opponent’s brain [is] banged against the inside of his cranium”, which immediately fixates a sense of atrocity in one’s mind.The creation of this image of downright horrendousness truly illustrates to an audience how wrong and disturbing the sport actually is. He further illustrates his point by alluding to Johnny Owen, a boxer who was put into a severe coma merited to a single punch to the head. His use of pathos, or emotional appeal, evokes a sense of pity and apology by the audience, the example of a real person who has been greatly damaged by this horrendous act certainly apotheosizes Wills point. This example even goes so far as to engender a sense of hatred towards the sport by the audience.
George Will uses vivid and consequential imagery to illustrate his point that the sport is no less than the acts that the Roman gladiators had to perform nearly two thousand years ago. He reprimands the audience for even thinking that boxing is a legitimate sport that doesn’t somehow detriment the boxers. He uses logos when he argues about the logistics of the sport and how they are scientifically proven to hinder a boxer, and he uses pathos to demonstrate the ramifications of the violent sport on some unfortunate boxers. His use of diction and imagery certainly elevates his argument and makes it more pressing.