PRESIDENT TRUMP pardoned LEGENDARY boxer JACK JOHNSON yesterday . . . after being talked into it by SYLVESTER STALLONE.
Jack was the first black World Heavyweight Champion. He held the title for seven years, from 1908 to 1915. His career spanned more than 40 years, and he won 104 official fights, 40 by knockout.
He had 10 draws and 13 losses . . . although he only suffered ONE loss between 1905 and 1926, and that was to Jess Willardwho stripped him of his title in 1915.
Jack was arrested in 1913 and convicted of violating the ‘Mann Act,’ which forbid transporting a woman across state lines for, quote, “immoral purposes.” The woman was allegedly a prostitute, who he was dating.
He’d been involved with her in 1909 and 1910, which was actually one year BEFORE the Mann Act passed. And there’s a good chance the charges were racially-motivated, since Jack was always in relationships with white women.
Jack eventually served 10 months in prison, and died in 1946.
Over the past decade, there’s been a push to have him posthumously pardoned, and Trump agreed to do it after getting a call from Stallone.
Trump said, quote, “It’s my honor to do it. It’s about time . . . he represented something that was both very beautiful and very terrible at the same time.”
Trump took a few jabs at President Obama for not pardoning Jack, saying that Obama’s failure to do it was, quote, “very disappointing.”
It’s unclear why he didn’t, but generally the Department of Justice doesn’t bother with pardons for dead people, to focus on the requests of the living. So, they’re rare, but they have happened.
(By the way, the Mann Act is STILL on the books, but it’s been altered . . . and for the last 40 years, it’s mostly been used to prosecute child abuse and child trafficking cases.)