Efforts to stop Judo becoming sport fail
As soon as Mr. Risei Kano (son of Jigoro Kano), who had maintained a distance from the Kodokan for many years out of dislike for Judo, became the third president of the Headquarters, he initiated efforts aimed at the conversion of Judo into a sport and its promotion and acceptance as an Olympic sport. Thus, the seminars given by Ito Sensei constituted a very pathetic resistance in the face of such a movement. In order to collect large donations for the sums required to move the Kodokan from its location near Suidobashi and to erect the new structure in its present site, chief secretary Mr. Ito, Master Kyuzo Mifune and Juzo Kudo Sensei visited Mr. Matsutaro Shoriki (a Judo player from Sanko School and an ardent believer in Kanoism) on many occassions. Mr. Shoriki was heavily involved in newspaper activities in both the political and financial worlds and he was finally persuaded to cooperate with the plan. The condition Mr. Shoriki set down was to the effect that the monies he donated be used to stop the movement to convert Judo into a sport and to re-establish “Budo Judo”. However, upon completion of the new Kodokan, Mr. Shoriki found that the Kodokan was actually attempting to create the impression that they were in favor of Judo as a self-defense art when in fact they were continuing their efforts to promote the conversion of Judo into a sport. He became inflamed with anger. (A bust of the “angry” Mr. Shoriki can be seen in front of the Kodokan.) This series of events led to the construction of the Budokan (large sports arena located in central Tokyo used especially for martial arts events) in Kudanshita, to which he devoted himself with an almost abnormal intensity. The Budokan holds consultative meetings for the promotion of the traditional martial arts and has a budo research association.
It is probably the case that, as with the eternal development of mankind, sports will never disappear. Those of us who are practitioners of budo are without exception devotees of sport. Sports are the celebration of both technique and physical power. They are the manifestation of the fighting instinct and life energy of humankind. However, despite the fact that the order of sports is based on the morality of European knighthood, the rapid degeneracy of this ethic has recently come under criticism. At the same time, the commercialization and politicization of the Olympics have become more conspicuous and loud cries have been raised in favor of the games being returned to Greece. Furthermore, the crime rate among juvenile delinquents rises in proportion to the popularity of sports. This fact has darkened the world of sports which has adopted European knighthood as its standard.