Fist Fights are Good For Society

Maybe. And I’m just talking out my rear end here, but I see so many stories about people being beaten to death or seriously injured due to squabbles that it takes me back to my youth.

Back in the day, if two males had a disagreement, then we had it out in the alley/off campus/after work. We beat on each other (or at least tried) and more times than not we shook hands and moved on with our lives.

If you do that today you will be arrested for assault and/or battery and could possibly be fired from your job even for suggesting such a solution.

So the tension builds and builds until a deadly weapon or a horrific fight comes about, people go to jail and the tension remains.

Were we right in the good old days?

Were the disagreements really settled by a fight?

Is that how you want society to work? Who ever wins a fight is ‘right’?

You were not right in the old days.

No, we didn’t. I don’t know where/when you grew up, but fights weren’t a common occurrence in my neck of the woods. We usually just avoided each other, that seemed to work. I think you’re looking back with rose colored glasses, and you have a very confused view of how things are currently. IIRC, school violence and deaths are down overall but we just report on it more.

Not really. Recent research on aggression indicates that the more often someone behaves aggressively, the more likely they are to be aggressive in the future. It becomes an addictive behavior. The idea that ‘‘venting’’ rage makes people less likely to be aggressive is a myth.


What venting does is make you feel good and powerful, and more likely to vent in the future.

As far as ‘‘deadly weapons’’ and ‘‘horrific fights’’ – those were actually more common in the past than they are now.

Actually a little more fist fighting would be good for everyone. The most important lesson you learn from such situations is : My actions have consequences. Today people are able to act in absolutely abhorrent manners and get away with it scot free. Provided they don’t touch someone, or get really over the line sexually, there are no legal repercussions for the actions. A good punch to the face every now and then was a potent reminder to think before speaking or acting.

Yes. An excellent rejoinder to my OP…

In other words, you had more respect towards someone because if you crossed a certain line, then fisticuffs would ensue

Fist fights? That’s for pussies. In the real good old days, if someone took umbrage at something you said, you’d each load up a pistol and fire at each other until one man was crippled. Politeness ensued.

Unfortunately, overbearing government regulations no longer allow that. It would be very interesting with the advent of accurate barrels and full automatic, high capacity pistols.

I’d just like to say that I find the idea of an adult male never having had a fight to be a bit dubious. Who are these people - some kind of wimps who avoided every physical confrontation they were faced with?

I don’t think the belief was that the winner was right, just that the issue didn’t need any more disputing, once both words and fists were exhausted.

This is most people actually. The vast majority of people will do almost anything to avoid any fight, physical or even just verbal. Many times just standing up and taking a step forward is all it takes to back someone down. I’m not a big guy but I’ve gotten guys WAY bigger than me to back down simply because they weren’t willing to throw down.

I would say that I have more respect, tolerance, and patience in general, not of any specific person. Sometimes I won, sometimes I didn’t. Either way though, a fight is an unpleasant and dangerous consequence that I understand to be an option if I push someone too far. For those that have never been in one, they often have an inflated sense of self assurance and protection within the law to be total assholes. That’s why there are so many more of them about these days.

Right. A good ass-kicking will humble you. And even when you win a fight you probably took a good shot or two. Either way, like you said, it was a bad experience that you don’t want to duplicate unless necessary.

These days, people don’t experience those consequences, so they continue to be dicks in perpetuity.

First rule of Fight Club is you don’t talk about Fight Club, brah.

Really? If at WORK, as the OP stated, if some issue came up that lead to a fist fight, then after the fight the issue just didn’t matter?

Look, I’ve been in that situation a few times and the issue didn’t magically go away. Ever.

You assume the point is to vent. The point is instead to create consequences for negative actions, so that they don’t occur, and the anger doesn’t build up in the first place.

Honestly, I wouldn’t be for violent punishment, but I would really like there to be something you could do to someone who treats you like a jerk. This “as long as I don’t touch you” crap is bogus. You can stir up quite a lot of anger without physically hurting someone. And even most people who dish it out can’t take it without at least wanting to become violent.

How do you guarantee that no one’s bringing a weapon to a fist fight? It’s not like such things proceed only after everyone agrees on Marquis of Queensbury rules or anything.

If they aren’t touching someone, and they aren’t going over the line sexually (or presumably, with any particular epithets), then how abhorrent can they act?

I inferred this comment

to be a reference to fistfights as a way of preventing tension from building.

I don’t like violence, in fact I’d consider myself somewhat of a pacifist, but I have to admit I think fist fights are kind of cool. I guess I watch too many movies.

Earlier, you said “you” and “in the old days”–now you’re saying that, in fact, you have personally taken matters “outside”?

Really, now?