By refusing to reinstate Mike Tyson's boxing license, the Nevada Boxing Commission has demonstrated that even in Las Vegas, there are some things money can't buy. Despite the certain knowledge that Tyson's fight with British boxer Lennox Lewis would have provided millions of dollars to that region's devastated post-Sept. 11 economy, the commission held firm
With Tyson in the ring, big-time boxing has degenerated into nothing more than a Roman-style entertainment, in which the rich and famous gain some kind of satisfaction watching warriors duking it out in the Coliseum. Tyson's biting antics let him play two roles -- the lion and the gladiator. There should be nothing for him but thumbs down.
All is not lost for the fight, however. The Staples Center in Los Angeles is said to be expressing interest in the bout -- if the California boxing commission is willing to license Tyson. Michigan might look favorably on a deal as would a number of other countries, including England, South Africa and the Netherlands. Sensibly, Raymond W. Kelly, New York's boxing commissioner and the city's police commissioner, said that & quot;we would honor the decision of the Nevada athletic commission. & quot;
Act of contrition: At the Nevada hearing Tyson was oh so contrite, saying he was sorry and that next time he would learn to control his anger.
But before the commission had even reached its verdict, Tyson was already out in the parking lot, calling Lewis out. & quot;I think Lennox is a coward, & quot; Tyson said. & quot;I'm going to fight him any time I see him in the streets. & quot; So much for anger management.
Still, Nevada boxing commissioner John Bailey told Tyson, & quot;Deep inside I sense you are a good person. ... I will always root for you to overcome life's challenges. & quot; In fact, while Tyson is trying to find another state or nation that will grant him a boxing license, Las Vegas police are investigating two more accusations of rape against him
In an interesting juxtaposition, on one page of the news, there's former heavyweight boxing champion Mohammed Ali appealing to Pakistani terrorists for the release of Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl, asking that they show "compassion and kindness."
On another page of the news, there's another former heavyweight boxing champion letting the world know that he's not Mother Theresa. As if anyone would mistake the convicted rapist, biter and brawler for the symbol of peace and lovingkindness.
Such men as Tyson do not belong in the public eye