Boxing can promote discipline

Published 8:16 pm Thursday, July 21, 2011

How many times have we all heard older men say, “When we were young, we settled our problems with our fists?”

I’ve even caught myself uttering those same words after hearing about shootings in Selma. It is true the world has changed for the worse in terms of conflict resolution among young people. Many are too quick to pick up a gun to provide an outlet for their frustration and anger.

I always felt that football was a great way to get out any aggression or frustration, but football is not for everyone. Those who are not interested in playing football need another outlet.

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That outlet has arrived in the form of Robert Dower’s boxing lessons.

For now, Dower is teaching from a friend’s garage and has gotten a strong response. Hopefully, he will eventually find a gym that can be used.

Dower said the idea is to convince young people to pick up a pair of boxing gloves instead of a gun.

He is off to a good start, and he is doing it the right way. Dower has already met with members of the Selma City Council and the Selma Police Department to lay out his plans.

This isn’t a man who is trying to turn a quick buck; he is trying to pass on his knowledge and skills to people who might find an outlet for their aggression and a potential career.

Yes, boxing is a violent sport. Yes, people get hurt.

But more times than not they walk out of the ring with a life lesson and no regrets.

Creating a boxing hub in Selma can have lots of positives if Dower’s efforts were to expand to a level where the city could host a venue like Friday night fights.

There is no doubt that boxing in a controlled environment with ticket sales and concessions could be a huge draw.

Hopefully Dower’s efforts will be rewarded with community support and young people will respond with enthusiasm. The young men training in a garage could be on their way to starting something great for Selma.