Correcting past wrongs

John McCain, AZ’s senior senator, has spent a great deal of time seeking a posthumous pardon for heavyweight fighter, Jack Johnson. The first black heavyweight champ was convicted of violating the federal Mann Act in 1913, which prohibited transporting women across state lines for “immoral purposes.”  Johnson’s career was devastated by the year he spent in prison on what are now being exposed as trumped up charges.

That was 96 years ago, when McCain was just a boy, but he is not one to forget.  The lifelong boxing fan has met with some of the boxer’s descendants and has pushed for a pardon since 2004. McCain has been joined in his effort by Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., and documentary producer Ken Burns.

President George W. Bush declared “Jack Johnson Day,” for five years in a row when he was Governor of Texas. Johnson was a native of Galveston, Texas.

“Rectifying this injustice committed against Jack Johnson, the first African-American heavyweight champion of the world, is long overdue. A posthumous pardon would represent a final vindication to his family, and I hope the president will concur with Congress and swiftly issue a posthumous pardon to Jack Johnson,” McCain said.

The Dallas Morning News carries more information here.

We invite you to watch this fascinating video clip.

7 Responses to Correcting past wrongs

  1. Flying V says:

    OK. You caught me short on this one. Thanks for the chuckle!

  2. West Valley GOP says:

    “96 years ago when McCain was just a boy”? Was that supposed to be funny?

  3. Chuck says:

    Did it make you laugh, WVGOP? It cracked me up! I’ll just bet it was a touch of Friday humor. I thoroughly enjoyed it!

  4. sherriaz says:

    Good one, SeeingRedAZ!

  5. Tempe Tom says:

    Hey John! How about standing against the illegal invasion and Obama’s march into socialism when you get some free time?

  6. Ajo Joe says:

    Tempe Tom, you stole my thunder! That’s the right question. On this one, I’m a day late and the ol’ dollar short.

  7. West Valley GOP says:

    I thought it was funny, so long as it was written as a joke. Bet McCain votes for Sotomayor. If he had a real primary, he wouldn’t, but without one, he’s gonna go all “maverick” on us again.