sport abuse “The expense of spirit in a waste of shame, is sport in action.” (Or so the immortal bard should have written: “lust” on a *libertarian basis being a healthy delight). While exercise is healthy in cautious moderation, virtually all sporting activities, including athletics, are an abuse of the body to some degree. Sport abuse, unlike so-called *‘drug abuse’, is almost a pleonasm. It is an irony and a *hypocrisy that many people who are otherwise *health *fascists often encourage and even participate in this so-called *natural and healthy activity.

Sport abuse will inevitably result in a variety of sporting injuries throughout the time that the abuser continues with his dangerous habit, and some of these injuries can last the rest of the abuser’s life even becoming exacerbated with time. With many of the hard sports, such as football, running and *boxing, there is a significant risk of permanent *disability and even death. And most of this entirely foreseeable damage will be treated using *state *healthcare at the expense of *tax-victims, which is inexcusable (see *seat belts and helmets).

It might be suggested in its defense, that this is a valuable physical *addiction involving naturally occurring opiates from exercise that are as good and as harmless in themselves as heroin. But this is not a sound defense just because of the alternatives of such safe recreational *drugs or moderate exercise. It is also a psychological addiction, but there are myriad beneficial psychological addictions that could better replace it.

Apart from the damage done to human bodies, the amount of time and *money that is spent indulging in active and voyeuristic sport abuse is phenomenal: a not insignificant proportion of most *countries’ *national products. And yet the state often grants *criminal *privileges and tax-extorted subsidies for sport, especially athletics (e.g., *compulsory purchases for national sports grounds and billions of pounds taxtorted to fund the UK Olympics). This is part of the same ‘bread and circuses’ tactic used by Roman emperors to distract people from the infinitely greater damage caused by *politics. Sport is also the very opposite of a safety valve for national differences. For it is used to stoke up the *nationalism that the nation-state requires to survive and to go to *war.

There is also the fact that many sport abusers become insidious sport pushers of one kind or another, and often push sports to very young *children (including their own sons and daughters) and, at the very extreme, even participate in its compulsion within state child-prisons, i.e., *schools, which is *morally indefensible.

Despite all this, it remains the libertarian prerogative of the individual to pursue this addictive, harmful, mindless, life-wasting depravity at his own expense; and even viciously to entice others into doing the same. One has a *right to choose how to spend one’s own life. Needless to say, if one can affirm individual *liberty even in this *extreme case, one should have no problem with tamer areas such as those involving sex and drugs.

A Dictionary of Libertarianism