What do you get when you have a neo-nazi who has a conviction for domestic violence and rape? Well, if you are the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC), you might just have a lightweight fighter, who was featured on a televised bout this past weekend.
Does the UFC have any standards?!
Brandon Saling was featured in a lightweight bout on March 4, which aired on Showtime. And there with the world watching, Saling stood shirtless for all to see his 88 tattoo on his shoulder with what look to be “SS” symbols around it, right above a tat of “White Steel” across his abs. (Click here for a photo.) Now, that 88 could mean “hugs and kisses,” which is a sign off for amateur radio enthusiasts. But it is more likely that it is a symbol commonly used by Neo-Nazis (apparently it stands for H, which is the eighth letter of the alphabet and the first letter of Hitler).
So, that’s pretty bad.
But if that isn’t bad enough for you, it turns out that Saling, was convicted of first degree rape of a person under the age of 13 back in 2004 (when he was 18). According to this Daily Jeffersonian story, Saling and another 18-year-old friend were charged in the disappearance and rape of two girls ages 12 and 13.
So, that’s really horrible.
Then comes the revelation that Saling was convicted of domestic violence in 2008 and spent 40 days in jail for that sentence.
Is there anything redeeming about this guy?!
The only good news I can report here is that the Ohio Athletic Commission has stepped in and revoked Saling’s license for failing to disclose his criminal convictions. And, for once, I can say that UFC President Dana White is backing the right play and has said that Saling will never fight for the UFC again. (Then again, he’s fired people before…)
You know what might help a lot in this situation? If the UFC had a Code of Conduct to offer immediate remedy to a situation like this. Background checks, appropriate use of social media, disciplinary actions for offensive hate speech… all these and much more can be addressed in a Code of Conduct!
Please take a second and sign the petition urging the UFC to enact a Code of Conduct!
(PS: The petition closes later this month and I’ll be delivering it to the UFC. The more signatures, the better! Tell all your friends!)