We think of violence as unpredictable and all consuming, without laws and control. However, in boxing, the ferocity of the fight is always subordinate to the rules of the ring. This is the beautiful paradox of boxing. It teaches controlled violence executed within a context of rules.
The Downtown Youth Boxing Gym is a similar paradox.
To cleave neighborhood youth from a life of violence, Khali, head coach at the gym, offers lessons in this special brand of violence.
In the gym, the many youth who are trained by Khali are disciplined and matured by the rules and expectations of the sport.
The rigor and fast paced work helps the kids stay out of trouble; the traditions give the kids a place to learn respect.
The camaraderie of sparring, training, bleeding and boxing teaches the kids about family.
So in a place sometimes desperate like Detroit, sometimes seemingly on the brink- on it's ninth day without water- there is comfort in the hope the gym gives. The hope that the hard work and training will birth rare warriors who will fight for a better city.