To hear Mike Tyson
tell it, his whole life is about lost innocence.
“Tyson” is an authorized biography of the former
heavyweight champion, now 40, who patiently explains how
he went from boxing phenom to fallen celebrity to
convicted felon to resurgent fighter to retired former
Along the way, he became Muslim, kind of, he
distances himself from Don King, kind of, he blames
himself for his losses in the ring, citing lack of
preparation or motivation or both (as if he’s still
convinced that nobody could beat him if he was really
trying), and has nothing good to say about the young woman
in the Miss Black America pageant who accused him of rape,
which he still maintains is not true (though a jury of his
peers decided otherwise, and sent him to prison for it).
He’s magnetic, he’s powerful, he’s sad,
he’s even pitiable, but he seems desperate to tell
everyone how he’s at peace with himself now.
We hope so.
Do you think of boxing as
organized masochism, condemnable personal violence,
amazing athleticism, venerable sweet science, or some
Why are some heavyweight
champions also celebrities, and others not?
Can you name the current heavyweight champion?
Dr. Ronald P. Salfen,
Pastor, Grace Presbyterian Church,