Ben Rothwell isn’t about choosing sides.
In the wake of violence and discontent in his hometown of Kenosha, Wisc., after police shot Jacob Blake, Rothwell did his finest to pass along a message of unity over divisiveness.
He posted a photo on his Instagram explaining the meaning behind Black Lives Matter as well as the significance of that phrase, adding “I hope we can come together and have some understanding.”
The veteran heavyweight contender also published a picture standing along with Kenosha police officers with a message that said “regardless of political views, I hope we can concur that these are some of the most essential individuals in the country.”
According to Rothwell, he felt the need to speak up in hopes of bringing his neighborhood back together once again rather than enjoying it be torn apart.
” I do not want to break it out and state the community’s shattered cause that’s how it felt at first,” Rothwell informed MMA Fighting throughout the UFC Fight Island 5 media day.
” Individuals started to put the pieces together that this entire scenario was pretty messed up, and I put myself … and if any person looked at my social media, I was kind of right in the middle getting ripped to shreds by both sides. People that lost their organizations and things like that, [and] the neighborhood came together to assist.
In the middle of a very heated presidential election, Rothwell thinks that played a major part in the stress that continuously boiled over in the fights between protesters and foes.
” I kind of blame a lot of the politicians,” Rothwell stated. It’s getting even more obvious what this is all about, and it’s quite unfortunate that this whole thing is about an election and it’s all politics.
” Our country is actually at each other’s throats, pointing fingers at each other. I simply wish we might slow down and look at the huge photo and realize we’re all getting played.”
On a more individual level, Rothwell just needed to take a look at the membership in his own gym to understand that deep down people aren’t naturally great or wicked and common ground can be reached even in one of the most basic ways.
Rothwell spends the majority of his days training and mentor along with a diverse group of coaches and trainees from all walks of life. They put biases aside to assist each other while practicing martial arts.
” I had the photo with all of our hands in the middle,” Rothwell explained. “As you can see, there’s lots of various colored hands in the middle. That was my gym. Individuals do not understand me, they don’t understand why I’m in this position since I’ve type of resided in my little bubble in my fitness center for the last 10 years knowing world peace.
” I have many various people that work together. When they come through the doors, they do not care where they worked, what they did, we come in there to help each other and it’s a stunning thing. I want more of the world could be like mixed martial artists. We ‘d have more world peace in this location. That’s where it’s at. I simply attempt to be there for the neighborhood, too. Just attempt to put myself out there and do the very best we can.”
While he understands there’s no best answer to sooth the stress that exists on the planet right now, Rothwell enjoys that he’s been able to turn back to martial arts as a sanctuary of sorts throughout a truly tough time in the United States.
” Blended martial arts is a godsend– it conserved my life,” Rothwell stated. “We got our kids classes going once again. To see what it provides for children, finding out genuine defense and they develop self-confidence and to stop bullying and to find out to interact. For the adults, they can be found in and they get their tension relief and all of the grownups have this going on in Kenosha.
” They come into our health club and just have peace, train together to help each other and to have that. It’s truly an amazing thing. I’m permanently an ambassador of combined martial arts. It conserved my life.”