In a community recently, there was an exposure of past school violence (school violence) against a player belonging to a professional baseball club in a non-metropolitan area. He said it happened 17 years ago, when he was in elementary school. The issue of past school violence against professional sports players is still rising in the mouth. If the issue of school violence arises, it will be fatal to the life of a player. The twin sisters Lee Jae-young and Lee Da-young, former national volleyball players, can no longer set foot in Korea and travel abroad. Ahn Woo-jin of Kiwoom Heroes is recognized as the best ace in Korea, but he is not selected for the national team.

Doosan Bears pitcher Lee Young-ha is currently on trial for school violence. In February 2021, Mr. A, a junior in the baseball team of Sunrin Internet High School, reported to the Sports Ethics Center that he had been abused by Lee Young-ha and Kim Dae-hyun (LG Twins), and the Sports Ethics Center commissioned the police to investigate them after their own investigation. Kim Dae-hyun was acquitted in the first trial, and Lee Young-ha’s sentencing hearing will be held on May 31. Prosecutors are seeking two years in prison for Lee Young-ha.

Depending on the outcome of the trial, Lee Young-ha’s life as a professional athlete may or may not stop. According to the rules of the Baseball Commission, for intimidation, assault, injury, etc., a 2-month suspension of participating activities, a suspension of 50 games or more, or a penalty of 5 million won or more can be punished. However, public opinion is more terrifying than rules, so if a conviction comes out, the future of Lee Young-ha cannot be guaranteed. After making his professional debut in 2017, Lee Young-ha recorded a career record of 46 wins, 35 losses, 7 saves and 4 holds with an ERA of 4.81. In 2019, right before the school viole

Song Myeong-geun and Park Sang-ha, who were quick to respond by giving up 

business trips and declaring retirement, returned to the court. In February 2021, when Lee Da-young was a member of Heungkuk Life Insurance, a post posted on her personal Instagram hinting at a discord within her team became the catalyst. At the time, Lee Da-young wrote that “Those who bully may be fun, but those who are bullied want to die” and that “abuse and bullying are things you should never do”, and her writings became boomerangs. It is because of the revelations of juniors in the same volleyball club that they were assaulted and threatened by Lee Da-young and Lee Jae-young during her middle and high school days. 

Her twin sister later posted a handwritten apology, but the situation escalated out of control and eventually led to her being kicked out of the domestic volleyball world. Lee Jae-young and Lee Da-young once played in the Greek league or the Romanian league안전놀이터, but currently do not belong to a team. In the case of Lee Jae-young, Pepper Savings Bank also pushed for recruitment, but faced a strong headwind from public opinion. In the volleyball world, there was once a public opinion saying that only Lee Jae-young should be saved, but it seems that it will be difficult to see these twin sisters in the domestic professional league in the future. In fact, it is permanently expelled. 

After the twin sisters’ abuse became an issue, several revelations followed. In men’s volleyball, Song Myeong-geun and Park Sang-ha’s school violence was raised, but they are currently continuing their professional lives. Song Myeong-geun immediately apologized after the school violence broke out and then gave up on the rest of the 2020-21 season. Afterwards, he signed a contract with OK Financial Group for an annual salary of 300 million won as a free agent, enlisted, and then was discharged and played the 2022-23 season. In the case of Park Sang-ha, immediately after the exposure, she admitted to the abuse twice and announced her retirement, but she returned to the court after being found to have made false reports about the 14-hour confinement assault. His team changed from Samsung Fire Insurance to Hyundai Capital, and he also played in the 2022-23 season championship.

Unlike the twin sisters, the reason Song Myeong-geun and Park Sang-ha were able to return to the court was because their response was different. Sisters Lee Jae-young and Lee Da-young also admitted to the abuse and apologized at first, but later changed their attitude to tougher responses, such as countersuing. There is no sense that fans who were disappointed with this have turned their backs.

The scarlet letter once stuck, the reason why it is not easily erased

In professional baseball, along with Lee Young-ha and Kim Dae-hyun mentioned above, Ahn Woo-jin and Kim Yu-seong (Doosan Bears) are not free from the issue of school violence. Ahn Woo-jin was punished by the Korea Sports Association for bullying while at Whimoon High School, so he cannot be selected for the national team. This is why it cannot be included in the preliminary entry for the Hangzhou Asian Games in September. In the case of Ahn Woo-jin, he reconciled with 3 out of 4 victims, but it is known that he has not yet been forgiven by 1 person who is serving in the military. He is evaluated as the best ace in the domestic league, but the issue of school violence is likely to follow as a tag throughout. 

Kim Yu-seong, who was the ace of Gimhae High School, was first nominated for the NC Dinos, a club related to his hometown in 2020, when he was in his third year of high school, but his nomination was withdrawn as his abuse in middle school became known. The first nomination withdrawal was the first in professional baseball. After that, Yuseong Kim went to Korea University and was nominated by Doosan during the rookie draft last year when he was a sophomore. Even a protest truck to withdraw the nomination appeared, but Doosan pushed through with the contract. 

Kim Yu-seong made his professional debut as a relief pitcher on April 28 against SSG Landers. His performance was 1 inning, 2 walks and no runs. However, in the match against the Hanwha Eagles on May 4, he collapsed with 3 hits (2 home runs) and 5 runs in 1 inning. Every time Kim Yoo-seong takes the mound, cheers and booing erupt from the crowd at the same time. 

Bae Ji-hwan (Pittsburgh Pirates), who plays in the US Major League, was summarily indicted by the Daegu District Prosecutor’s Office on charges related to dating violence in 2018, and was also suspended for 30 games by the Major League Secretariat. Bae Ji-hwan was also eliminated from the preliminary entry for the Hangzhou Asian Games.

The exposure of school violence in the past does not stay in the sports world. Idol singers and actors often leave the team or get off the drama because of past school violence. The standards of the public are more strict for those who are exposed through TV. Compared to gambling or drunk driving, public opinion is harsher. The more popular they are, the stronger the whip. As seen in the case of the twin sisters and Song Myung-geun and Park Sang-ha, the public’s judgment also differs depending on the initial response and whether or not to apologize to the victim. 

It is also true that efforts are being made to self-clean up in the amateur sports world due to the exposure of school violence and subsequent sanctions. A parent of a baseball player in the second year of high school said, “These days, athletes are less troublesome at school. Rather, even if non-athletes inflict verbal and physical violence on athletes, athletes do not stand still for the future. You just have to be patient,” he said. There are also opinions that each player should be judged differently depending on the severity of the abuse, but there is currently no severity of abuse. There are only perpetrators and victims. It is only hoped that the number of players wearing the scarlet letter of “academic violence” will gradually decrease in the professional sports world through strong self-restraint and self-restraint efforts.  

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