Muay Thai is the national sport of Thailand. Fighters spend their entire lives eating, sleeping, and training at filthy outdoor gyms; aspiring to compete every weekend for little to no prize money. By the time they’re in their late twenties, most of them have retired from competing with 200+ fights, and go on to privately train Westerners visiting Thailand for around $150-$300 per week. With the recent influx of fighters traveling to Asia to hone their striking skills and build on their experience, The Thai government decided mixed martial arts is threatening Muay Thai, so in a controversial move, they outlawed MMA to preserve Thailand’s national sport. Most of us love Muay Thai, so it’s cool the government is looking out for it, but most of us dig MMA too, and banning it only hurts their economy and limits their athletes from achieving full potential (unless they leave their home country entirely, which they can’t always afford to do). In response to everyone opposing this decision, Thailand’s government wants to share the real reason MMA is now banned in Thailand, which is: MMA is savage and has no proper rules.
Rather than criticizing their opinions, I’m just going to assume that MMA is just too mainstream for Thailand. They don’t want to be the most hipster country in Asia, so they’re doing what they can to prevent their country from turning into Austin Texas. If you look at it that way, I’m sure you can get behind that.