Thursday, May 7, 2015

If you cheered for Mayweather you need your head examined

For the “every man,” i.e. those of us who aren't boxing connoisseurs, the “Fight of the Century” turned out to be a bit more of a dud than anything approaching legendary. I personally was disappointed with the result – for the sole reason that I despise Floyd Mayweather.

Floyd Mayweather isn't a champ – he is a woman beater, plain and simple. He couldn't land a KO on Manny Pacquiao, but he has done it to more than a few women in his life. And on Saturday night he made $100 million. It’s enough to make me sick.

I find it shocking that anyone could possibly cheer for such a lowlife. How do you live with yourself cheering for a trained fighter who uses those fists to hit women? "Money" has been accused of seven separate assaults against five different women that lead to citation or arrest, as well as other accusations in which the police weren't called. This is a guy to cheer for? 

What Mayweather does in the ring is special – that’s irrefutable. But what he does out of the ring is equally reprehensible and as a society we shouldn't be able to separate the two so easily. Would you cheer for him when he’s punching a woman? I would hope not. So how can you cheer anything he does? Some people are able to separate the Mayweather in the ring from the Mayweather out of the ring. I’m not one of those people, and I don’t think anyone should be.

Floyd Mayweather is no role model – he is the anti-role model: Kids, this is who you DON’T want to be like. But on the flip side, he is the richest athlete in the world. So are we showing children – and adults alike – that your actions in the home don’t correlate to your prowess in a sports arena? Unfortunately, it is often the case. I had a sports journalism professor at Boston University, the great Jack Falla, who said a quote in class once that has stuck with me for more than 10 yeare: “If Jeffrey Dahmer ran a 4.4 40, we would have said he had an ‘eating disorder.’”  

While a ridiculous statement, it shines a light on a sad truth in our society: If someone is good at a sport, or a good actor or singer, we recuse them of responsibility when they act like monsters in their “regular life.” Look at Chris Brown, who is still a sought-after singer making hit records with some of the biggest names in "The Business." Every time I see or hear Chris Brown, I think of the bruised and battered face of Rihanna and immediately change the channel. Does his abusive background take away from his musical talent? No, but I won't be part of helping him grow his fortune.

With Mayweather’s win, many news outlets have written something along the lines of, “You don’t have to like him…” But why is that OK? Why is it OK to cheer for a man who beats women without thought or repercussions? Because he is a great boxer? That shouldn't be the case. They talk about his “troubled past.” What about his disturbing present? The public's indifference to Mayweather's serial domestic abuse is especially shocking in light of recent events involving football players, and how the public reacted to those. After video was release of Ray Rice punching his then-fiancĂ©e (now wife) in an elevator in Atlantic City, he was suspended by the NFL, dropped by the Baltimore Ravens and became a hated man in the eyes of the public.

Rice is a pariah, yet Mayweather is lauded by many. This guy you cheer for? Well in 2010, Mayweather attacked the mother of three of his four children, punching and kicking her in the head. His oldest son called the police and he did a plea deal to domestic assault and pleaded no contest to harassment charges, serving two months of a 90-day sentence. She filed a defamation lawsuit against him, saying he made up lies about her to save his own butt. He said the alleged abuse against her was a result of his having to "restrain her" because she was "on drugs." How nice of him to blame the victim. What a guy!

I think there are two types of Mayweather fans: those who don’t know his past (which means they have never read anything about him and there is little excuse for that) and those that do. Those who don’t are at best ill-read and at worst ignorant. But those who do? Well they are complete and utter dirt bags at best. Grantland writer Bryan Curtis was at the fight and reported a Mayweather fan shouting, “Give your best Ray Rice to ’em!” Yes, you read that correctly – knock out Pacquiao like Ray Rice knocked out his wife. Stay classy, dude. 

What is my point in all of this? Mayweather may be the greatest boxer of all time, but he is a despicable human being and if you cheered for him, you are either ignorant or a horrible person who supports a serial abuser.