Mary Griffith Rips USA Fencing on her blog and Walks Away…

Mary Griffith is a long time member of the bout committee that helps to run USA Fencing’s large North American Cup Tournaments.   On May 13th, she took to her blog to share her frustrations with the organization and to explain why she has had enough.


I’ve written several times before about how I got into working bout committee at USA Fencing national tournaments, about how annoying it was for both me and my daughters for me to be right there at the strip watching them compete. For them, I was a distraction; for me, watching them fence was uncomfortably stomach-churning—there was nothing I could do to help them except refill their water bottles and try not to bother them. When someone suggested that I help out with bout committee (BC), I jumped at the opportunity—it gave me something useful to do far enough away from my daughters’ strips to eliminate the stomach-churning, but still gave me access to plenty of information on how they were doing.

One thought on “Mary Griffith Rips USA Fencing on her blog and Walks Away…

  1. Thank you to MG for all of her hard work and time to serve the fencing community. Fencing has been the avenue through which I have received a lot, including a wife and something to share with my son. I agree with the perspective of Tony Gross’s post in her comments section, in that the problems you are describing are in fact prevalent in every organization in America today. The problem is not USFA or the fencing community.
    The problem is every individual American.
    We see it every day:
    *when we get cut off in traffic and scream at the windshield – but cut someone else off 10 minutes later and don’t even notice that we did it;
    *when we call someone a name under our breath for not mowing their lawn – but 10 minues ago we through a cigarette butt on the street with no thought about the mess or who cleans it;
    *when we complain endlessly about how “all” politicians are crooks and they are all the same because they are all liars – but 10 minutes later we are convincing ourselves that we really do deserve that item we put on the credit card, or we are yelling at our kids for their messy rooms while we haven’t vacuumed in months, or we don’t back into a store to pay for what was mistakenly not charged, or we say we want to be physically healthier and then stuff more cookies into the maw,
    or when we say someone ought to fix our country and then can’t be bothered to know anything about how that coutry works, don’t vote at all, or vote blindly;
    or when we tell our bosses, teachers, friends those untruths to protect our own feelings or power or stuff.
    Every American needs to take a hard look at two things: lies and accountability
    Take a challenge, find out what a lie really is. Understand both those of commission and omission. Then for one week, do not lie.
    Take a second challenge, accept no lies from anyone around you. Do not remain silent. Call him out on it – gently, don’t be mean we don’t have to be mean.

    Thank you to MG for pointing out an aspect of our lives, fencing and the governing body that makes local, state, national, and global tournments possible. Without these venues in which to pit ourselves against each other, for iron to sharpen iron, we would have no growth internally. I believe MG is making a difference, by what she does, and by what she says that brings understanding to others. There are two people of value in this world, those with a commitment and those who require the commitment of others. Please be encouraged by the posts you have see here and do not be weary in well doing.

    Thank you also to Tim Morehouse for having the vision and taking the publicity lead toward making the USA fencing community what it should be another American success story based on individual Americans holding themselves and each other to high standards.

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