Apparently, Chicago is for Lovers not Fighters

Capone Chicago

The state that brought us Al Capone passed a bill (House Bill 1490) in June banning boxing and full-contact martial arts contests that are not explicitly approved “by the Department” or as it is commonly known “by the Man”.

The event organizers have to demonstrate that they conform to a strict set of rules defined by the government including the requirement that they pay %3 on the first $500,000 gross income and %4 on the rest.

This might not be a huge deal for large events, but for the smaller guys, it’s a major problem. One example is the IBJJF Chicago Open that was scheduled for August 21st and that I was planning to attend with several other people. The event is now on hold until further notice.

Will a respected IBJJF organization be willing to operate in a state that wants it to follow a complicated bureaucratic process in order to host an event that most other states give it the full freedom to do without it?

Chicago is the city where I grew up, in that I went from middle school to college there, and it saddens me to see it give so little love to those that fight. Al Capone would be sorely disappointed.

0 thoughts on “Apparently, Chicago is for Lovers not Fighters

  1. Eric Silverman

    3% tax on GROSS revenue sounds like a targeted way to keep the little guys out. It means if the event doesn’t make any money you still need to pay taxes on the gross ticket sales which essentially magnifies the losses making it even harder to get started.

    Most of the laws I have seen around MMA and grappling seem written with the intent of keeping boxing, the political financing that comes from boxing and obviously all of the other revenue around boxing intact. This seems to be another one of those laws, no doubt “the man” has ties in some way to boxing revenue. The larger boxing events will probably sail through without a hitch while the larger MMA or grappling events get permanently moved to the bottom of the “to be considered pile”.


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