This past Saturday (6/8/02), Lennox Lewis and Mike Tyson attempted to beat the holy hell out of each other in Memphis, Tn., to see who would be the new heavyweight champion of the world. Naturally, Hollywoodites couldn’t resist the temptation to follow the herd to the city that Elvis once called home. According to a story by Reuters, the celebrities that were in town for the fight included the illustrious likes of Tom Cruise, Richard Gere, Denzel Washington, Halle Berry, Britney Spears, Clint Eastwood, Ben Affleck, The Rock, Hugh Hefner and Leonardo Di Caprio. Many were hosting or attending parties the night before to commemorate the event, living it up and getting ready for two men to climb into a boxing ring and lock horns the next day.
It may be called the “sweet science” by the likes of Jimmy Breslin, but before it was over Lewis had bloodied both of Tyson’s eyes and his nose before delivering the final blow and knocking the man to the mat in the eighth round of the match. But before you feel bad for Tyson you should know that this is the man who said he’d give Lewis a lobotomy and eat his children. A man who seems to be unable to keep himself from having his way with women and/or beating them. What a charming fellow.
I’m sure you can tell I love boxing. Even though my love for it abounds and pours forth from all orifices, my real problem with this whole thing is the Hollywoodites. For a crowd of people who champion the causes of minority groups this seems pretty hypocritical to me. Two black men beating each other? One of them a convicted rapist who seems to suffer anger and/or mental problems. Why does the Hollywood jet set keep supporting this sport? To me boxing is a trash sport just a rung above “professional” wrestling, not something that people should be paying thousands of dollars for ringside seats too.
Halle Berry, as you read above, was at the fight. About a week before the Academy Awards she gave an interview to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution saying that if she didn’t win the award for Best Actress then it was more than likely because of racism. Could Halle tell me if watching two men beat the garbage out of each other lifts up African-Americans? Rather than pay thousands to attend this trashy sport, these A-list actors should speak out against boxing and the thug mentality it seems to bring out in its participants.