The world just went mad over the Floyd Mayweather Jr. vs. Manny Pacquiao bout. Hyped as “one of the most anticipated fights in boxing history”, it seemed liked everyone I knew tuned in to watch the match.
I didn’t watch a single second.
In my opinion, watching two men beat each other to a pulp – and that too, getting paid big bucks to do it – is ridiculous.
But this post is not about boxing.
This post is about the fact that Mayweather has a long history of domestic violence. His record shows seven assaults against five women in addition to other episodes in which the police were called but no charges filed.
In fact, he even attacked the mother of three of his children, punching her in the head – get this – in front of his sons. His oldest son called the police and, for this, Mayweather served two months of a 90-day sentence. This is just one of many incidents.
I wonder how many people watching the boxing bout – all the celebs in the front row and all the pay-per-view watchers – knew this? And, if they did know this, why did they turn a blind eye to it? Does his larger-than-life persona negate his violent personality? Some of you may say, “It’s only a match, get over it!” But by watching the match, aren’t you aiding and abetting his behaviour?
I see it all the time. Sportsmen put on a pedestal, their bad behaviour condoned. The age-old trifecta of drugs, sex and alcohol swept under the (red) carpet. Does this success in sport somehow wipe clean the slate of that sports star’s sin?
Or is it fair to say that a celebrity’s (actor, sportsperson, rock star) personal life should not impinge on their jobs or success?
I think not. After all, if I had any kind of misdemeanour against me, I would need to declare this to my employer who would then have the right to refuse to employ me. You do the crime, you pay the time.
Domestic violence is something Australia is grappling with right now. I’m sure it’s the same story in the rest of the world from the US to India. So it seems gravely unjust and ironic to be paying this man millions (Mayweather is reported to earn at least $120 million) for this punch-up – the very thing he should really be going to jail for.
What’s your opinion: is a celebrity’s personal life separate from his job in the spotlight? Or should they be made accountable for their private wrong-doings?