Friday, January 27, 2012

Buffalo Girls - child boxers

How young is too young to fight? 

Director Todd Kellstein says: "Their faces beam with youthful innocence. Like other young girls, they laugh and play, in spite of their hardscrabble existence. But on Saturday nights in rural villages throughout central Thailand, some of the nation’s 30,000 child boxers enter the ring, where their tiny fists, elbows, knees and feet fly, pummeling one another in pursuit of prize money as strangers, neighbors, and even their own families, wager on the outcome. Is it exploitation, empowerment or economic necessity?"



Snowcatcher said...

Probably a little bit of everything. But when kids get into something they enjoy, even if it does exploit them, how much are they learning, enjoying and building skills they will use throughout their lives? For the kids who make something of it, I'm very excited they have the opportunity.

niamh said...

@Snowcatcher - right, it's a complex situation. The first girl interviewed here clearly wants to contribute - what's heartbreaking is that any family should live in a so bad a situation that their 11 year old daughter feels she should make money to keep the family going. And then like you say for kids who compete wholly for the fun, if they are enjoying fighting and it's safely done, then why not?