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World Famous Heterosexual Pro Boxer Becomes Leading Face of LGBT Rights in Poland

Michaelczewski

An internationally-renowned straight professional boxer is making headlines in Poland after he showed up to an LGBT rights event in Warsaw to support equality, NYT correspondent Slawomir Sierakowski reports:

D-MichalczewskiDariusz Michalczewski, a world-famous pugilist who goes by the nickname Tiger, recently made headlines by announcing his support for one of the country’s most prominent gay rights groups, Shoulder to Shoulder on Equality — L.G.B.T. and Friends, by appearing in a photograph with a sign reading, “I am an ally of L.G.B.T. people, because I want to live in a country where my gay friends are not discriminated against.”

Read a report from Poland here.

Michalczewski explained his decision to participate in the campaign:

"I just love people! I'm not a racist and do not judge people because of their sexual orientation. I'll give you an example. Two young men live near me. They are smiling, friendly, accommodating. We all like them. And then someone noticed that they kiss. Neighbors began to hate them...Did they change? No. They are still those same valuable people. You have to treat them differently because they are gay? This (kind of treatment) is sick! It prompted me to participate in this campaign."

The NYT adds:

Mr. Michalczewski is both a surprising advocate for gay rights and the perfect choice for the role: He is white, heterosexual, Catholic, rich, professionally successful and widely popular, and thus more likely to persuade conservatives than a liberal intellectual or politician. A typical young man from an economically depressed town that doesn’t have a single movie theater but has five churches might not get a chance to read a progressive manifesto. The opinions of a legendary boxer who grew up under similar circumstances, meanwhile, might prove thought-provoking.

And Mr. Michalczewski has guts: The popular sportsman did not limit himself to one photograph. He supports not only homosexuals’ right to enter into civil unions, but also their right to adopt children. In one TV appearance, he directly confronted right-wing politicians, by asking: “What if your daughter were a lesbian? What if your son were gay? If it were my child, I would love him very much. And I would support him in everything, because he’d be my child!”

Perhaps there is hope for LGBT rights in eastern Europe.

(Via Aksarbent)


Championship Boxer Kassim Ouma Charged With Felony Battery Over Unwanted Gay Advances

Former middleweight boxing champion Kassim Ouma has reportedly been charged with felony battery for assault a man who made unwanted sexual advances on him in Los Angeles.

Kassim_oumaTMZ reports:

The former IBF junior middleweight champion is telling investigators ... he was hanging out in Hollywood early Friday morning when he struck up a conversation with a guy he just met. Ouma says the two went back to the other man's home for a drink ... where the guy allegedly made a pass at the boxer.

We're told ... Ouma claims he politely declined multiple advances ... but says when he got up to leave, the guy made one final move -- and Ouma shoved him away. The altercation then escalated ... with Ouma allegedly knocking the guy out cold. Cops were called to the scene — where the victim was treated and transported to a nearby hospital.

The blog Rod 2.0 adds:

Ouma has a very compelling personal story and is the subject of the 2008 documentary Kassim the Dream. He was kidnapped at 6-years-old and forced to become a child soldier for the rebel army under the leadership of Yoweri Museveni—who later become Uganda's president and has remained in that position 1986. Ouma was drafted into the army as a teenager, became a boxer in the army's amateur team and applied for political asylum in the United States when he was 18-years-old. Ouma later became the International Boxing Champion Junior Middleweight world champion.

Ouma remains behind bars for the time being.


Jake Gyllenhaal Shows Off Boxer's Body: PHOTO

Gyllenhaal

Speaking of loving Jake Gyllenhaal, the actor has been in Vegas at the Mayweather Boxing Club preparing for a role in an upcoming Antoine Fuqua film called Southpaw, and some grainy evidence has emerged of his fitness for the role.

(via my new plaid pants)


At Weigh In, Boxers Take Matters into Their Own Hands: VIDEO

Ufc

A short fantasy fighting film by The Perez Bros.

Check it out, AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "At Weigh In, Boxers Take Matters into Their Own Hands: VIDEO" »


2nd And 3rd Pro Boxers Come Out...As a Couple: VIDEO

Esteche and Gimenez

Boxing is one of those sports where people don't typically expect to find gay competitors - well, people who don't actually know gay people don't expect them to be there, anyway. Part of what made Orlando Cruz's coming out so spectacular was that it showed the world that gays really do cover the spectrum and can be found in any sport.

Now we have a second and third boxer to come out while still active in the sport, Blabbeando reports. Argentinian Ana Laura "La Monita" Esteche just won the light welterweight championship for the World Boxing Association, and in the post-competition interview she thanked "her woman and my mother-in-law."

"Her woman" is Johanna "Yoki" Giménez, with the pink hair above. Giménez also just so happens to be a WBA professional boxer, and the two work out together daily, waking up as early as 5am to train. Esteche is confident in coming out, saying: 

It's that it's something that you should not hide, after all happiness is not something you should hide, it's something to be shared and I - we - are happy.

Photo courtesy of Martín Canevaro and the 100% Diversity & Rights collective.

You can see Esteche's Spanish-language interview AFTER THE JUMP...

Continue reading "2nd And 3rd Pro Boxers Come Out...As a Couple: VIDEO" »


Evander Holyfield Offers Half-Apology for Calling Gays 'Handicapped' and 'Not Normal'

Evander holyfield

Former heavyweight champion boxer Evander Holyfield said he owes an apology for controversial remarks he made on UK Celebrity Big Brother that being gay is being “handicapped” and “ is a choice” 

He added that homosexuality is something that can be fixed by a doctor, saying "What would be good about it? That ain't normal."

Holyfield, who was recently evicted from the show, was naturally asked by reporters about the homophobic comments he made while in the house.

He responded:

"I was telling one person my view. I do owe an apology for what I said because I really wasn't talking and really wasn't trying to talk about somebody, because I don't talk about nobody. She asked me something and I thought I was sharing with her my view personally, and I forgot about everything. So I am going to make a public apology about that because I am sorry for anybody I offended in that situation."


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