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Old 03-12-2012, 09:11 AM   #46
Legend X
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

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He was a child of his times, in that he'd let racism from others happen without protesting. For instance, I am guessing he'd watch a lynching of a black, enjoy the free drinks on hand and would not try and stop it, but he wouldnt takean active part in the actual lynching himself.
You are "guessing" he'd enjoy himself at a lynching party ?

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Much like he was happy to accept when he was told he shouldnt fight blacks, he was ready to accept the status quo of white race hat, but he wouldnt actually go out there and stop blacks fighting whites on hisown accord.
Whoah ..... ducking black fighters with the 'color line' is "much like" sipping drinks under the hanging corpse of some poor victim of a racist lynch mob ?

I think people need to get a sense of perspective with this boxing history stuff.
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Old 03-12-2012, 09:48 AM   #47
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

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I disagree with a lot of your assertions.
You may, they are the status quo in historic sciences though.

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Firstly, the cruel African slave trade was known to be 'wrong'/immoral/inhuman or at least highly morally dubious by a great many white Americans, including the slave owners themselves.
Most intelligent people could probably see it was a bit dodgy if they knew anything about it.
Since the 1500s and 1600s there were religious groups calling for it to be ended. Christian culture had long since associated slavery with pagan Roman empire.
But slavery in America persisted because it was PROFITABLE.
Biological 'scientific', as well as religious, justifications were later made, but that was in the face of protests and common sense that deemed it wrong.
Of course there were people who thought it was wrong and 100 years ago there were more than 200 years ago. But they were not the majority. For the majority the inferiorness of blacks was a fact. They hardly thought of them as better than animals and thus slavery was okay.

Christianity opposed slavery. But only to a certain point. In fact that blacks were used as slaves and not Natives was a result of the Catholic Church "deciding" that the Natives had souls that could be rescued and thus cannot be made slaves. They never said anything about blacks, we know the result.

Changing the opinion of one person about something that he got teached all his life is very hard. Doing the same to a society is a lot harder. Thatīs what happened there. A whole society changing their views on "race".

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Secondly, the German generation who were Nazis were NOT brought up to think killing all human beings for their race was wrong. They grew up in an age of imperialism, an age of eugenics, an age where war and harshness and ruthlessness were glorified as 'noble' qualities. They grew up where the idea 'survival of the fittest' and 'the strong have a natural right to kill the weak', 'the strong nations must conquer or destroy the weak nations and races' were at the forefront of a lot of intellectual and modern thinking.
While some of that is true to some extent. You overlook 300 years of enlightment and humanism that coined German society. That means that human life was seen as the most valuable good on the planet. That everybody has the same rights. And that was the case during the late German Empire and itīs successor the Weimar Republik. Thatīs were the later nazis grew up in.

The age of imperialism you describe was gone by then - at least in Germany who had to learn it the hard way in WW1. That was the thinking of the people who lead Europe into WW1, not the ones who would lead it into WW2. Social Darwinsim as you described was NOT accepted by the majority of society - until the nazis came along.

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Plus, the myth of the 'Jewish problem' was even more deeply imbedded than a myth of blacks being inferior.
The "Jewish Problem" was a nazi construct that did not exist before them. Sure, Jews were looked upon as different and by many with suspicion but they had the same rights as everybody else and were accepted as part of society at the time. In the past they had to suffer due to various reasons, for example as "murderers of Christ" or because they were allowed to take interests when Christians couldnīt and thus were different AND rich (well some of them). But at the time of the nazis those were things of the past (thanks to enlightment and humanism) and the anti-semitism was marginalised to some stereotypes. The nazis took it to a whole other level, later using the past stereotypes and constructing "the Jewish problem" - and later their "solution" to it.


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Of course the German Nazis knew the holocaust was a 'crime'. And they knew many Germans would have thought it wrong too. That's the same with most genocides and massacres. They wanted rid of the Jews. They didn't expect to sell it to the world as 'a good thing' all at once. They were working on a tight schedule. And they had a lot on their plate.
But thatīs the whole point. Everybody knew it was a crime. They did it anyway.

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They tried to hide it because they could.
Why would they when they knew it to be right?

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That's my take anyway.
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Old 03-12-2012, 10:36 AM   #48
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

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i never said he wasn't, just that it had 0 to do with boxing, and i was replying to posts that weren't about boxing either.
The history of american boxing is full of race issues, but the fighters involved skills have little to do with race, and most top black boxers who were held back do recieve their historical dues from people here.
I will also say that self made people are usually free from a lot of the causes of racism in an individual, rich = snobby and ignorant, comfortable middle class = keep others off my stuff, poor = blame others for problems. self made = much more aware that individuals are the same because less reliant on their social group for all their interactions and opinions.

on the holocaust, remember the difference between nazi party and ss, and conscripted troops/civilians
I think the Holocaust is an entirely separate issue, that has zero to do with boxing .

Colour prejudice on the other hand ,touched the lives of countless blacks involved in boxing, not to mention those that were lynched after white black contests. so it is a legitimate point for discussion imo.
A boxer can have any amount of character faults/ vices ,I should have thought it was a given that they would not alter his standing as regards his fistic talent?
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Old 03-12-2012, 01:01 PM   #49
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

holocaust is nothing to boxing, was just making the point that the nazi party was not all german peoples.

the lynching thing is, of course, a massive evil, i had never heard of it directly following a boxing match(to the participant), and was a little shocked 2 read it.(my ignorance, not questioning you)

boxers ability - i agree with you


this is the only forum i use so i am not the best at expressing my exact views without voice tone or facial expressions, and i hate racism, but also those that throw the word about without applying world and sociological history to their opinions, which there is a lot of in this thread.
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Old 03-12-2012, 02:07 PM   #50
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

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holocaust is nothing to boxing, was just making the point that the nazi party was not all german peoples.

the lynching thing is, of course, a massive evil, i had never heard of it directly following a boxing match(to the participant), and was a little shocked 2 read it.(my ignorance, not questioning you)

boxers ability - i agree with you


this is the only forum i use so i am not the best at expressing my exact views without voice tone or facial expressions, and i hate racism, but also those that throw the word about without applying world and sociological history to their opinions, which there is a lot of in this thread.
You expressed yourself well K. Who is there on ESB that condones the horrendous practice of slavery ? Answer none.. Enough of the self -
flagellation by some posters on today's uninvolved and innocent human beings in ESB...Bigotry also is evil, and it is going by the wayside...
But as sure as I am typing this, today there are evil people in every race
and they too must be exposed...Cheers...
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Old 03-12-2012, 02:56 PM   #51
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

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1. You may, they are the status quo in historic sciences though.

2. Of course there were people who thought it was wrong and 100 years ago there were more than 200 years ago. But they were not the majority. For the majority the inferiorness of blacks was a fact. They hardly thought of them as better than animals and thus slavery was okay.

3. Christianity opposed slavery. But only to a certain point. In fact that blacks were used as slaves and not Natives was a result of the Catholic Church "deciding" that the Natives had souls that could be rescued and thus cannot be made slaves. They never said anything about blacks, we know the result.

Changing the opinion of one person about something that he got teached all his life is very hard. Doing the same to a society is a lot harder. Thatīs what happened there. A whole society changing their views on "race".

4. While some of that is true to some extent. You overlook 300 years of enlightment and humanism that coined German society. That means that human life was seen as the most valuable good on the planet. That everybody has the same rights. And that was the case during the late German Empire and itīs successor the Weimar Republik. Thatīs were the later nazis grew up in.

5. The age of imperialism you describe was gone by then - at least in Germany who had to learn it the hard way in WW1. That was the thinking of the people who lead Europe into WW1, not the ones who would lead it into WW2. Social Darwinsim as you described was NOT accepted by the majority of society - until the nazis came along.

6. The "Jewish Problem" was a nazi construct that did not exist before them. Sure, Jews were looked upon as different and by many with suspicion but they had the same rights as everybody else and were accepted as part of society at the time. In the past they had to suffer due to various reasons, for example as "murderers of Christ" or because they were allowed to take interests when Christians couldnīt and thus were different AND rich (well some of them). But at the time of the nazis those were things of the past (thanks to enlightment and humanism) and the anti-semitism was marginalised to some stereotypes. The nazis took it to a whole other level, later using the past stereotypes and constructing "the Jewish problem" - and later their "solution" to it.

But thatīs the whole point. Everybody knew it was a crime. They did it anyway.

Why would they when they knew it to be right?

1. History is written by then winners, I doubt sociolocial theories trying to understand German motivations are given much lip service in modern Germany?

2. Well you say that but abolitionist legislation had been past years before because the majority believed slavery to be wrong

3. They did and they didn't but see above, the abolitionist movement was a strong one supported by the majority of white society, especially the educated circles

4. Now you're comparing educated German society with uneducated American society.

You also overlook the following, many German soliders in WW2 attributed no value of life to Jews and Slavic people butchering them left right and centre. While they were by all account treated the 'Aryan' British reasonably well as prisoners of war. If all life is considered equal, why was this so?

5. Is it not more likely the majority of German society in this time were not educated and accepted what their government told them?

6. The 'Jewish problem' was a big focus of The Nazi Party, partly because of the perceived Jewish allegiance with The Communists. However Jewish and German integration and xenophobia were always issues, not just in Germany but throughout Europe. The Nazi Party took that xenophobia and conflict to the N'th degree. As you mentioned the Jews were seen as the murderers of Christ, many didn't integrate, the Jewish Elite (not the Jewish Majority) ran the banks, which in turn screwed over the economy the same way they're doing today
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Old 03-12-2012, 03:12 PM   #52
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

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All true but nevertheless they grew up in a society which teached that killing humans - no matter which "race", religion or anything - was wrong. They knew that and committed their crime anyway because they believed it still to be the right thing to do - due to brainwashing, propaganda as you said. Jews were always suspicious in Europe (and partly in the US too if you look how many Americans supported the NSDAP in the beginning) due to them beeing different of the majority. People donīt like different (i know thatīs very general but a look in any history book should prove that point).

The holocaust was the first and biggest planned genozide where the people knew they were doing wrong. Since then there a few others but none of it on the same scale. Thatīs what made it THAT bad and unique.

Different with the slaveowners or racists who grew up getting teached that blacks are inferior to whites. They didnīt know better. And I do not want to excuse them. Racism is always wrong so much is clear. But itīs more understandable for people back then than for people today. And, honestly, IMO when comparing the racists in the US of the past with the nazis you are kind of diminishing the vastness of the crime the nazis committed.
Killing people is indeed as wrong but killing is psychologically justified if the people you are killing are considered the enemy, sub-human or evil. The Jews were wrongly considered just those things

Some of the people working at the death camps would be simply brain washed, others would have been sadists who simply enjoyed hurting and others following orders. We have to bare in mind many soldiers serving at the death camps were following orders. A soldier in the military will be executed if they don't follow orders.

I don't agree the Holocaust was the first planned genocide.
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Old 03-12-2012, 08:47 PM   #53
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

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All you ****s that like to dump on a long dead name from the past like Dempsey..even Jeffries and make moral judgements about them being "racist" should apply the same treatment to modern day racists like Hopkins...and the lovable icon Muhammad Ali as well...among others. tar and feather them for their racist sentiments as well...or just shut the **** up about it.
Agreed. I think the issue has more to do with socialization. Society has progressed significantly in human rights and race relations.

Jeffries ceased to be racist to Johnson the moment he realized that Jack likely could have finished him earlier than he did. In those days, fighters carried each other out of respect. I think Johnson carried Jeffries with a steady beating attached. He would have been killed the moment he stepped outside the ring if he finished Jeffries early. He must have known the dangers of taking it to Jeffries early considering all the reported death threats he received prior to the fight.

Nobody knows what was said in the interviews after the fight on the train, but more than one witness from that time has said Jeffries was very respectful and humbled by Johnson's skills in defeat.

"I could have never reached him in a million years"

Perhaps a Jeffries who wasn't six years removed from his fighting days woiuld have done a lot better.
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Old 03-13-2012, 05:22 AM   #54
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Default Re: all this b...shit about jeffries and dempsey being racist

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1. History is written by then winners, I doubt sociolocial theories trying to understand German motivations are given much lip service in modern Germany?
thatīs the main reserch field over here. To try and understand how a "enlightened", "civilised", "humanist" society could commit those crimes. To understand the "how" and "why" has long displaced "what happened".

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2. Well you say that but abolitionist legislation had been past years before because the majority believed slavery to be wrong
Clearly shown by the newspapers of the time. Freeing the slaves wasnīt even the reason for the civil war as far as I remember.

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3. They did and they didn't but see above, the abolitionist movement was a strong one supported by the majority of white society, especially the educated circles
No, it wasnīt. It was supported amongst the intellectual class but you are doing what you are accusing me of further down. Comparing the intellectual elite with the majority, uneducated people.

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4. Now you're comparing educated German society with uneducated American society.

You also overlook the following, many German soliders in WW2 attributed no value of life to Jews and Slavic people butchering them left right and centre. While they were by all account treated the 'Aryan' British reasonably well as prisoners of war. If all life is considered equal, why was this so?
Yes, but not because they didnīt see them as humans but because the war in the east was a much different one than in the west. It was much more brutal and cruel, from both sides. Quite large parts of the local population helped the nazis, trying to get rid of the communists. That is a far too complex topic to say "Germans had no value of life, see the war in Eastern Europe." Far, far more complex which many more reasons.

No, Iīm not comparing educated Germans with uneducated Americans. I compare the majority in both countries. Germany was not just some country but the country which in the preceding centuries produced many of the most important philosophers that articulated and formulated both enlightment and humanism. This kind of thinking sickered in in nearly 4 centuries, slowly replacing the thinking and ethics of Middle Age and early Modern times. Sure people were still majorily Catholic and Protestand but both tastes of Christianity were also transformed in those centuries, embracing both enlightment and humanism and coming back to the core value of Christianity which it shares largely with humanism.
And both - humanism and christian faith of the time - valued life above everything else.

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5. Is it not more likely the majority of German society in this time were not educated and accepted what their government told them?
No, because it has nothing to do with education. The majority of Germans wanted to do what every else wanted: a good life. They didnīt want to be harrassed or killed so they played a long. Many, on the countryside, probably didnīt even know what was really going on, many used it as an excuse to relief some pressure, some were fanatical about the ideology, their patritiotism or revenge for Versaille, and some tried to organise resistance (and nearly all died). But the vast majority played along because they simply wanted to go to work, raise their kids and have a good life and thus arranged themselves with the changes. By ignoring them mostly. IMO nearly as bad as actually helping in commit those crimes, so thatīs not an excuse but the momentarily by scientist preferred explanation.

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6. The 'Jewish problem' was a big focus of The Nazi Party, partly because of the perceived Jewish allegiance with The Communists. However Jewish and German integration and xenophobia were always issues, not just in Germany but throughout Europe. The Nazi Party took that xenophobia and conflict to the N'th degree. As you mentioned the Jews were seen as the murderers of Christ, many didn't integrate, the Jewish Elite (not the Jewish Majority) ran the banks, which in turn screwed over the economy the same way they're doing today
Thereīs some truth but also some wrongs. Jewish Elite didnīt run the banks, just as they donīt today. They run a few of them but not "the banks". And yes, this lead to aversion against them, and yes there was a xenophobia against Jews. But there was not a "Jewish Problem". This was a construct of the nazis - even there you have to differentiate, only few high-ranking nazis believed in that themselves but it was a useful tool to relieve pressure from a boiling society and to control it - not unlike nowadays.

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Killing people is indeed as wrong but killing is psychologically justified if the people you are killing are considered the enemy, sub-human or evil. The Jews were wrongly considered just those things.
There were not. Thatīs the problem. Not by the vast majority. See above.

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Some of the people working at the death camps would be simply brain washed, others would have been sadists who simply enjoyed hurting and others following orders. We have to bare in mind many soldiers serving at the death camps were following orders. A soldier in the military will be executed if they don't follow orders.
Yeah, following orders. For one, if you follow them you donīt have a problem and can live your life while it also gives you an excuse for what you did afterwards. Convenient, no? Thatīs what the majority of German soldiers said after the war: "we did nothing wrong, we just followed orders." And thatīs exactly what the majority of Germans thought and did, if you play along you get along and afterwards you can pretend of either not knowing anything or not beeing able to do anything because you might have gotten killed (which is true though).
There were a few brainwashed and sadists mongst them - like Mengele who until his death thought he did the right thing and was still a fanatical nazi - but they were a rather small minority.

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I don't agree the Holocaust was the first planned genocide.
Read again what I wrote "The holocaust was the first and biggest planned genozide where the people knew they were doing wrong.". Perhaps I should have put in "industrialised" somewhere but thatīs something different than what you wrote.
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Old 03-13-2012, 07:02 AM   #55
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Agreed. I think the issue has more to do with socialization. Society has progressed significantly in human rights and race relations.

Jeffries ceased to be racist to Johnson the moment he realized that Jack likely could have finished him earlier than he did. In those days, fighters carried each other out of respect. I think Johnson carried Jeffries with a steady beating attached. He would have been killed the moment he stepped outside the ring if he finished Jeffries early. He must have known the dangers of taking it to Jeffries early considering all the reported death threats he received prior to the fight.

Nobody knows what was said in the interviews after the fight on the train, but more than one witness from that time has said Jeffries was very respectful and humbled by Johnson's skills in defeat.

"I could have never reached him in a million years"

Perhaps a Jeffries who wasn't six years removed from his fighting days woiuld have done a lot better.
Jeffries, never at any time in his life made a complimentary remark about Jack Johnson, he refused to shake his hand before the fight either at the signing of the contracts , when they met in the ring, or after.

Johnson sent a friendly telegram to Jeffries on Jeffries birthday,[ April 15th 1910].

No response.

Jeffries did not reply to a telegram from Johnson congratulating him for taking the fight, and, in later years, signed his name to a statement that he was drugged with doctored tea just prior to the fight.

We know what Johnson said in interviews after the fight, they were published in all the dailies.
Johnson was allways a cautious performer,against Jeffries he fought the perfect fight, he controlled him in the clinches ,and just let him use himself up, no doubt he could have ended it earlier ,but it was not in his nature to take risks , then too there was the financial consideration of a longer fight being more valuable re movie rights.

Last edited by mcvey; 03-13-2012 at 09:45 AM.
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Old 03-13-2012, 08:24 AM   #56
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I think people are getting mixed up. Dempsey and Jeffries are criticized for not facing the best black fighters of their eras, not for being racist. A sportsman can be the least racist guy in the world, but if they do not compete against whole demographics of people then any claim the have to greatness must be scrutinised.
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Old 03-13-2012, 09:49 AM   #57
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I think people are getting mixed up. Dempsey and Jeffries are criticized for not facing the best black fighters of their eras, not for being racist. A sportsman can be the least racist guy in the world, but if they do not compete against whole demographics of people then any claim the have to greatness must be scrutinised.
Ive never heard / seen a quote from Dempsey where he refers to blacks as n*****s, smokes ,and dinges.

Jeffries ,many times referred to them in those terms.

Dempsey paid for George Godfrey's funeral, and said complimentary things about both Johnson ,and Langford.

I don't criticize Jeffries for being racist , I criticize those that won't admit he was.
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Old 03-13-2012, 10:12 AM   #58
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I think people are getting mixed up. Dempsey and Jeffries are criticized for not facing the best black fighters of their eras, not for being racist. A sportsman can be the least racist guy in the world, but if they do not compete against whole demographics of people then any claim the have to greatness must be scrutinised.
There you go again. If you [in general] tell a lie often it becomes a truth, so thet say. Dempsey today [on ESB mainly] has been accused od not fighting the obvious #1 contender Harry Wills, THOUGH they SIGNED for a fight, while he was champion [1920-23, when active]. If you want to accuse him of avoiding black contenders, [plural], name me the viable black contenders ? Langford, McVea, Johnson ,werall close to their forties by then,and were almost retired by that time...He {Dempsey] did fight the tough John Lester Johnson,who he befriended years later, he did employ the best black sparring partners as Big Bill Tate, massive George Godfrey,etc. This B.S. attributed to Dempsey is truly B.S. Any court of law
would throw the case out were "racism" illegal after the Wills signing, fighting JL Johnson, employing the top black sparring mates, etc.
You Dempsey haters, and I don't use the term lightly are so obsessed with tossing the term "Racist" when it suits your darn agenda, but overlook the
terrible racial and demeaning insults of others as Ali, Hopkins in very recent years...Furthermore in the days and years following the terrible race riots after the Johnson/ Jeffries fight in Reno, it was almost impossible to
promote a heavyweight title bout between a white champ and black contender...NY State would not issue a permit for this bout. So fearful of
riots and deaths as in the aftermath of Reno. One promoter Floyd
Fitzimmons signed Dempsey and Wills, but couldn't come up with the remainind dough from wary investors, had to cancel the bought and lost all his deposit money...These are the facts. So aside from the Wills cancellation what viable black contender did Jack Dempsey avoid that would have drawn a decent gate ? Aside from Harry Wills, none...Cheers...
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Old 03-13-2012, 12:09 PM   #59
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I think people are getting mixed up. Dempsey and Jeffries are criticized for not facing the best black fighters of their eras, not for being racist. A sportsman can be the least racist guy in the world, but if they do not compete against whole demographics of people then any claim the have to greatness must be scrutinised.
The interesting fact here is that Jeffries' public statements define him as a crudely overt racist, but

"Dempsey and Jeffries are criticized for not facing the best black fighters of their eras"

One can make a lot better case for Jeffries on this score than for Dempsey, who being part Jewish and part Amerind was probably much more sensitive on such issues. Jeffries did fight Johnson, Jackson, Armstrong, and Griffin, certainly a fair cross-section of the best black heavyweights of his era. Dempsey never met Langford, Wills, or Godfrey.
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Old 03-13-2012, 12:22 PM   #60
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The interesting fact here is that Jeffries' public statements define him as a crudely overt racist, but

"Dempsey and Jeffries are criticized for not facing the best black fighters of their eras"

One can make a lot better case for Jeffries on this score than for Dempsey, who being part Jewish and part Amerind was probably much more sensitive on such issues. Jeffries did fight Johnson, Jackson, Armstrong, and Griffin, certainly a fair cross-section of the best black heavyweights of his era. Dempsey never met Langford, Wills, or Godfrey.
Jeffries fought Johnson to "regain the honour of the White Race.

Whilst champion he many times stated ,"when there are no more white challengers left to fight I shall retire, I will not take a chance on losing my title to a black man".
Dress that up how you want, it is what it is.

A public statement of racial prejudice.

Langford was past it when Dempsey was champ.

Dempsey broke Godfrey's ribs in sparring, I doubt he feared him.
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