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Three years later, Johnson was convicted of violating the Mann Act, which made it illegal to transport women across state lines for immoral purposes. But the flamboyant boxer's real crime had been flaunting white society by having romantic relationships with white women.
Now, under a black president and black attorney general, the Justice Department is against pardoning Johnson. In the last session of Congress, both houses of Congress passed a resolution urging a pardon pushed by Sen. John McCain, R-Ariz., and Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., "to expunge a racially motivated abuse of the prosecutorial authority of the federal government." But President Barack Obama has not acted on it.
Johnson was hated by many white Americans, especially after retaining his title by defeating white boxer Jim Jeffries in the 1910 "Fight of the Century." Jeffries had come out of retirement for the bout, and Johnson's victory infuriated whites, setting off deadly race riots across the country.
Supporters were sure they'd have better luck with Obama, who became the nation's first black president 100 years after Johnson became the first black heavyweight champion. But they're still waiting.
The possession of muscular strength and the courage to use it in contests with other men for physical supremacy does not necessarily imply a lack of appreciation for the finer and better things of life. ~ Jack Johnson (boxer)
The first person prosecuted under the act was African-American heavyweight boxing champion Jack Johnson in a case with strong racist overtones. He had had an interracial affair with a white prostitute named Lucille Cameron, but she refused to cooperate with the prosecution; Johnson later married her. Less than a month later he was re-arrested for having crossed a state line, before the Mann Act was passed, with Belle Schreiber, a prostitute who had left a brothel. She testified against him, and Johnson was convicted and sentenced to the maximum penalty of a year and a day in prison.
Originally posted by JustinSee
Well, it was like a million years ago. Is it that important to apologize for the past? Everyone involved is dead. The world of yesterday is dead.
Once, when he was pulled over for a $50 speeding ticket (a large sum at the time), he gave the officer a $100 bill; when the officer protested that he couldn't make change for that much, Johnson told him to keep the change, as he was going to make his return trip at the same speed.
Originally posted by whyamIhere
reply to post by gimme_some_truth
Do you think Obama might be dodging this subject?
Do you think a pardon could be used against Obama?
Or is this another case of leading from behind?
I really had a great time reading about Mr. Jack Johnson.
His antics in context...Were decades ahead of their time.