Congressmen Blast Power Slap In Open Letter To TBS: ‘Traumatic Brain Injury Isn’t Entertainment’

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Back in January, after Dana White’s Power Slap aired its first broadcast, former UFC referee “Big” John McCarthy called it “sanctioned brain trauma.”

“I’m just going to tell you straight out. I’m all for competition and I’m all for any kind of competition, for the most part. I really am,” McCarthy said. “I just find it hard to believe, especially with places like Nevada, that they are regulating sanctioned brain trauma. That’s what it is. There’s NO defense of any type.”

McCarthy wasn’t the only one put off by Power Slap. Former WBC interim lightweight champion Ryan Garcia told the New Yorker, “it needs to be stopped.”

Even number one ranked UFC bantamweight Sean O’Malley said about Power Slap, “I cannot watch it. I don’t know if it’s I can’t watch it, because I understand what concussions are. I understand; I’ve been through them. I know how bad it is to do that to your brain. I can’t even see it.”

Now, two United States Congressmen, Bill Pascrell Jr. of New Jersey and Don Bacon of Nebraska, are decrying the “sport.”

In an open letter to Warner Bros. and TBS, the channel on which Power Slap airs, Pascrell and Bacon wrote, “From what we can tell. The Power Slap capitalizes on violent behavior and lurid drama masquerading as athletic prowess for profit. Participants are subject to sudden and powerful blows to the head and face causing ‘rotational acceleration,’ a primary cause of concussion and Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE). In recent years a large body of evidence has established CTE as a direct cause of memory decline, impaired cognition, depression, impulsive behavior, suicidal ideations, parkinsonism and dementia.”

Pascrell founded the Congressional Brain Injury Task Force in 2001 of which Bacon is a co-chairman.

The letter continues, “In exchange for endangering their mental and physical health, participants are offered a paltry $2,000 and optional cursory screening from Cleveland Clinic’s Lou Ruvo Center for Brain Health. Power Slap participants may not demonstrate immediate injury, but the unnecessary damage caused to their brain will have long lasting and disastrous consequences. Endeavor Production, TBS, and UFC appear to have created and profited off a deadly television show, with significant reach and impact, without implementing basic and commonsense protocols.”

The entire letter, which includes three questions they would like to see answered, can be read below.

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Before settling down at BroBible, Douglas Charles, a graduate of the University of Iowa (Go Hawks), owned and operated a wide assortment of websites. He is also one of the few White Sox fans out there and thinks Michael Jordan is, hands down, the GOAT.