This flap could turn positive. Sulaiman (right, next to Canelo in center) could renounce his opinion, and visit domestic violence shelters with Sergio Martinez to learn why domestic violence is a sin and true crime. (Hogan)
The sanctioning bodies exist with a “Kick Me” sign perpetually attached to their tush. At times I tend to think they get a tad more grief than they deserve, and some fightwriters expend most of their outrage at the alphabet boys when it could be argued it would be wiser to spread it around more. But by and large, the sanctioning bodies deserve the scorn they receive. I mean, Hasim Rahman ranked No. 1 by the WBA, Hasim Rahman who hasn’t beaten anyone in the top ten since 2006. Hasim Rahman who is 39 and whose last semi-meaningful win came back in 2005, even in this dreadful era of heavyweights, really shouldn’t be within sniffing distance of anyone’s top ten..But I digress. The subject of this column is the head of the WBC, Jose Sulaiman, who was quoted by writer Ronnie Nathanielsz of Boxing Scene and the Manila Standard as dismissing wife beating as being not such a big deal.
I am hoping that Sulaiman was misquoted, that lines got crossed, that he didn’t really say, when talking about the Floyd Mayweather case, “beating a lady is highly critical, [but] it is not a major sin or crime.”
You read that right. Not a big deal. On par maybe with jaywalking? Does this guy yearn for the caveman era, when you could bonk your gal on the head with a club with impunity? Does your wife Martha know about this flippant attitude to the sort of situation Mayweather got himself into? Do your six kids sign off on this? You owe it to all of them, if the quotes are accurate, to explain yourself.
Now, it is entirely possible that the writer misheard the 80 year-old ruler, who has been president of the Mexico-based body since 1975. After all, this next sentence in Nathanielsz’s story, ‘The WBC president feels that “we should join the service to society ruling [by the court] with visits to hospitals of children with cancer’’ doesn’t make much sense.
Sulaiman was asked about how the WBC would handle the Mayweather case, as Floyd is the WBC 147 pound champion, and their rules call for a boxer to be stripped of his belt if he’s incarcerated. Floyd is due to enter jail on Jan. 6, after being sentenced for domestic violence following a Sept. 2010 fracas with the mother of his children. He indicated that his outfit would likely blow off their regulations so as to make it easy to make the Mayweather-Manny Pacquiao fight.
If indeed Sulaiman did say beating a woman is neither a sin nor a crime, and he does not come forward to retract his statement, he should be removed as president of the WBC.
I’d like to hear him explain his statement, and first make sure he did mean what the writer said he said.
But if he did say that, then the man should be booted, because he is not of Earth. Really, what planet do you live on if you think beating a woman is not a sin or a crime?
Jose Sulaiman, you must step forward today and address this situation. And if you do not, anyone who deals with you is tarred by association. I’m all for free speech, but I’m also for being mindful of standards of decency in our sport and society as a whole. This sort of embarrassing material reflects poorly on all of us involved in the fight game.
Sulaiman’s opinion on domestic violence, if indeed the quote reflects his true stance, is beyond ignorant and grounds for dismissal. Jose, if you want to address this situation, and clarify or retract your stance, my email address is Fightwrite@gmail.com">Fightwrite@gmail.com. Please reach out.