Sunday, December 05, 2004

Volume I, Number 1

It's Dr. Rice, Not Dr. Dre
December 1, 2004

by Ann Coulter

In light of their reaction to the nomination of Condoleezza Rice as secretary of state, I gather liberals have gotten over their enthusiasm for multiculturalist milestones. It's interesting that they dropped their celebrations of the "first woman!" "first black!" "first Asian!" designations at the precise moment that we are about to get our first black female secretary of state.

When Madeline Albright was appointed the FIRST WOMAN secretary of state, the media was euphoric. (And if memory serves, Monica Lewinsky was the first Jewish female to occupy her various positions on the president's, uh, staff.)

With Albright at the helm of the State Department, Osama bin Laden ran wild throughout the Middle East, the North Koreans began feverishly building nukes under her nose, and we staged a pre-emptive attack solely for purposes of regime change based on false information presented to the American people by Albright about a world leader who was not an imminent threat to the United States. Slobodan Milosevic wasn't even a latent, long-term, hypothetical threat.

But the girls in the mainstream media were too smitten with Albright's brooch collection and high heels to notice the shambles she was making of foreign policy.

The New York Times raved about Albright's brooches in an article titled, "A Diplomat Who Says 'Read My Pins.'" In the San Francisco Chronicle, Leah Garchik was amazed by Albright's "jewel-encrusted flag" pin -- Albright's clever ruse to prove that Republicans did not have "dibs on patriotic jewelry." Perhaps Rice could impress American journalists if she talked more about her accessorizing.

People magazine quoted an aide gushing that Albright "stays in her heels all day." Albright herself told Harper's Bazaar, "I've kidded that the advantage of being a woman secretary of state is makeup." This was a great leap forward for feminism? At this point even Paris Hilton was rolling her eyes and saying, "Oh, come on now!"

But Bush nominates a brilliant geopolitical thinker who happens to be black and female and all of a sudden she's Butterfly McQueen, who don't know nothin' 'bout birthin' no Middle Eastern democracies.

Earlier this year, the flamboyant Richard Clarke claimed that when he briefed Rice in early 2001 about al-Qaida, her "facial expression gave me the impression that she had never heard the term before." It's good to know that Clinton's chief terrorism "expert" believes himself to possess paranormal abilities such as ESP.

Why couldn't Dick Clarke have used some of those mind-reading skills on Osama before al-Qaida blew up the USS Cole in October 2000? Or after? To the bitter end, the official position of the Clinton administration was that it couldn't say for sure who was responsible for the Cole attack.

Apparently, liberals believe Rice compares unfavorably to Madeline Albright, whose principle accomplishment before becoming secretary of state was managing to attain the age of 60 without realizing she was Jewish. That was raw competence.

I take that back: Albright also taught at Georgetown University. Of course, American universities make professors of people like Eldridge Cleaver's wife. (Kathleen Cleaver is currently at Yale law school; Susan Rosenberg, a participant in a Brinks car robbery, teaches at Hamilton College; former Weatherman Bill Ayers is a distinguished professor of education at the University of Illinois-Chicago; and former Weatherman Bernardine Dohrn is the director of a legal clinic at Northwestern University.)

Or how about Clinton's first secretary of state, Warren Christopher, a lawyer whose dazzling foreign policy experience consisted of being President Carter's chief negotiator for the hostages in Iran? That's almost as impressive a resume entry as "Chief Iceberg Lookout, the Titanic," "Senior Design Engineer, the Edsel," "Navigator, Exxon Valdez," or "Writer/Executive Producer, 'Alexander.'"

The closest black woman to Bill Clinton was his secretary, Betty Currie -- whose principal function was penciling in "Monica" on Clinton's "To Do" list every morning. The closest black woman to most of the liberals accusing Rice of being incompetent is the maid they periodically accuse of stealing from the liquor cabinet.

George Bush chose a black woman to be his top adviser on national security. Now he wants her as his secretary of state. And when she becomes the first black female secretary of state, Rice will replace the first black secretary of state -- both appointed by right-wing Republican George Bush. The entire Bush cabinet is starting to look like an Image Awards telecast minus the fisticuffs and gunplay.

Democrats are terrified that black people might start to notice.

Say, there's a black woman standing next to President Bush ... who is that?

Never mind! It's probably somebody he's arresting!

It's extremely valuable for Democrats to be able to campaign in black neighborhoods while talking about the "white boys" running the Republican Party. When she was managing Al Gore's 2000 campaign, Donna Brazile said she was not going to "let the white boys win in this election." (If I had a nickel for every time I've confused Al Gore, Joe Lieberman, Terry McAuliffe, Paul Begala and James Carville for the Jackson Five ...)

Sure enough, Brazile was instrumental in not letting a couple of white boys -- named Al and Joe -- win the election. I guess that's liberals' idea of a "competent" black woman.

McCain demands immediate drug-testing policy

By Joe Curl
Published December 5, 2004

Sen. John McCain said yesterday he will introduce legislation next month if the representatives of major league baseball's players and owners do not tighten the sport's drug-testing policy "to restore the integrity of baseball."
"I warned them a long time ago that we needed to fix this problem," McCain told reporters at Andrews Air Force Base after attending the Army-Navy football game with President Bush. "It's time for them to sit down together and act. And that's what they should do. If not, clearly we have to act legislatively, which we don't want to do."
The Arizona Republican said he will introduce a stand-alone bill but added that if necessary, "We can add it as an amendment on most anything."
McCain was spurred to action after hearing that single-season home run champion Barry Bonds of the San Francisco Giants has been linked to steroid use but said the problem is far bigger.
"It's the entire revelation. It's not just Bonds but [also] Marion Jones," he said, referring to the sprinter who tested positive for drug use before this year's Olympic Games.
The long-simmering steroid accusations hit the headlines last week with reports of grand jury testimony in San Francisco that linked such stars as Bonds and New York Yankees slugger Jason Giambi to steroid use. The San Francisco Chronicle was able to review sealed transcripts containing the testimony of Bonds, Giambi and the Yankees' Gary Sheffield.
"I don't care about Bonds or Sheffield or anybody else. What I care about are high school athletes who are tempted to use steroids because they think that's the only way they can make it in the major leagues," McCain said.
In an interview televised Friday night on ABC's "20/20," the head of a nutritional supplements lab implicated in the story added the names of top track and football stars to those he said had used illegal substances.
Victor Conte, head of the Bay Area Laboratory Co-Operative (BALCO), said he didn't know whether Bonds had used steroids.
McCain said he watched that interview, "and it's very clear that there was a number of people involved in this."
He demanded quick action by baseball commissioner Bud Selig and players' union executive director Don Fehr to solve the problem.
"To restore the integrity of baseball, commissioner Selig and Don Fehr must meet immediately -- not merely by spring training as the commissioner has promised -- and agree to implement a drug-testing policy that is at least as stringent as the one observed by the minor league program," McCain said Friday in a statement.
It is unclear how much support such a proposal would have in Congress. The chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, Rep. James Sensenbrenner, Wisconsin Republican, complained last year that McCain's idea would rewrite baseball's collective bargaining agreement.
But the push against steroid use will have support from the top. Bush, a former owner of the Texas Rangers, believes so strongly that the game must police the drug that he included the topic in his last State of the Union address.
Selig said he is committed to ridding baseball of performance-enhancing substances and is demanding that the players' association adopt a stronger testing policy modeled after the minor leagues' more stringent program.
"The use of these substances continues to raise issues regarding the game's integrity and raises serious concerns about the health and well-being of our players," Selig said.
The union declined comment last week but has said it is willing to discuss the drug policy with management. The current policy was adopted in September 2002 and runs until December 2006.

Barry Bonds

Copyright © 2004 News World Communications, Inc. All rights reserved.


By James Williamson '07
The Progressive Review
Princeton University

Conservatives have long criticized the “liberal elite” for supposedly inundating college campuses with left-wing thought. More recently, however, there has been a shift in the criticism: as David Brooks noted in his September 27 column in the New York Times, there is now concern that liberals restrict the entry of conservatives into academia.

If this were true, it would be cause for major concern. As college is a place where people of all backgrounds are supposed to come together to be exposed to new opinions, discrimination against anyone based on his or her political viewpoint is unacceptable and would need to be rectified. But is this discrimination really what’s going on? Are conservative professors being hounded out of the Ivory Tower? Should we advocate a “conservative action” program, designed to bring those professors into the fold? In analyzing these questions, it’s important to look at the effect that a political viewpoint may have on the educational process, and also to what degree a lack of conservative thought on campus would be the result of active discrimination.

First, let us consider in which fields political viewpoints may be important. In many departments, political affiliation is simply irrelevant to what is being taught in the classroom. For example, it is doubtful that a Democrat would view an electron’s path any differently than a Republican would. Members of opposing parties are also unlikely to disagree over chemical equations, the integral of a trig function, or the syntax of East Asian languages.

Economics professor Elizabeth Bogan explained how even her department is often insulated from the politics of the professor. The intro-level courses, she said, deal with basic principles that most economists, regardless of party affiliation, agree upon. Many upper level courses then become highly math or statistics based. Even those that keep their “SA” designation still tend to stick to accepted tenets of mainstream economic thought. Some professors may inject personal comments into lecture, but such comments are merely additions to the usual course materials, not the material itself. Very few departments, in fact, seem to be affected by the party affiliation of the professor.

The most likely exception to this statement, the politics department, would thus appear to be the best place to look for a bias against conservatism. Yet most officials in the department deny that such a bias exists, saying that they believe there is a good mix of liberal and conservative viewpoints. Prof. Herbst, the Department Chair, goes even farther and says that he has never heard of discrimination in his department, and would be shocked to find it. Even with that, though, there remains the fact that more professors at Princeton tend to hold liberal, rather than conservative viewpoints. Is this in itself important enough to warrant a radical change in hiring policy?

If hearing different opinions is what’s important, it’s also crucial to remember that the classroom is not the only place where students can encounter other political views. Princeton’s American Foreign Policy newspaper considers itself “conservative.” In a similar vein, the “Tory” is a vocal member of our campus community. And, of course, the College Republicans continue to attract new members and hold regular meetings.

Nevertheless, the public perception that academia is skewed to the left still exists. It may be true that most professors at most schools hold left leaning viewpoints, even if these beliefs don’t have a significant impact on lectures. Nevertheless, this belief tends to overlook the conservative universities, such as religious Notre Dame, which attract a conservative faculty. With conservative “magnet colleges” drawing away professors, it would be obvious that other colleges would have less conservatives to draw from. Moreover, as one faculty member pointed out, college professors are normally paid less that they would be if they utilized their knowledge and experience in the private sector. They must then be willing to value other, non-material things more than money to take a job on campus. Appreciation of non-monetary rewards has long been a stereotypical liberal value. So, it should not be surprising that liberal-minded people consider becoming college professors at a greater rate than their conservative peers.

It’s plain to see that there is little to fear from a supposed dearth of conservatism. In most departments politics doesn’t matter much, and students have a wide-range of extra-curricular activities where they can express their views, whatever they might be. And, as for any abundance of liberal faculty, that’s not evidence of discrimination. More probably, it is the result of a combination of the pull of conservative universities and especially of the private sector. So, no, it’s not time for “conservative action.” We’re just watching the market at work.

Featherweight boxing champion Hogan Kid Bassey with his wife and two children travelling to the United States, 1958
Featherweight boxing champion Hogan "Kid" Bassey with his wife and two children travelling to the United States (1958 press photo). Bassey was the second African to become a world boxing champion.

Dick Tiger punching speedbag
Dick Tiger punching speedbag december 7, 1961
Dick Tiger punching speedbag
December 7, 1961

Dick Tiger flexes arm
Gene Fullmer Grimaces Dick Tiger Punches, San  Fransciso, California, October 23, 1962
Dick Tiger poses with flexed arm and gloves

Dick Tiger
Dick Tiger high angle with glove in camera, new york  city, March 30, 1962
Dick Tiger high angle with glove in camera
New York City
March 30, 1962

Gene Fullmer Grimaces Dick Tiger Punches
Gene Fullmer Grimaces Dick Tiger Punches, San  Fransciso, California, October 23, 1962
Gene Fullmer Grimaces Dick Tiger Punches
San Fransciso, California
October 23, 1962

Dick Tiger Hoisted on Shoulders
Dick Tiger Hoisted on Shoulders, San  Fransciso, California, October 23, 1962
Dick Tiger hoisted on shoulders after defeating Gene Fullmer
San Fransciso, California
October 23, 1962

Dick Tiger Lifted as Victor
Dick Tiger lifted on shoulders, San  Fransciso, California, October 23, 1962
Dick Tiger lifted on shoulders for defeating Gene Fullmer
San Fransciso, California
October 23, 1962

Dick Tiger in sweats skips rope, New York City, November 12, 1963
Dick Tiger in sweats skips rope New York City November 12, 1963
Dick Tiger in sweats skips rope
New York City
November 12, 1963

Dick Tiger fights Joey Giardello
Joey Giardello and Dick Tiger in middleweight boxing  championship fight
Joey Giardello in a middleweight championship fight with Dick Tiger. Giardello and Tiger fought 4 times from 1959 to 1965, all decision affairs, with Giardello winning the second and third fights and Tiger the first and fourth.

Jose Torres punches Dick Tiger
Jose Torres (right) punches Dick Tiger New York City May 16, 1967
Jose Torres (right) punches Dick Tiger
New York City
May 16, 1967

Dick Tiger and Bob Foster spar
New York City
May 24, 1968" border="0">
Dick Tiger and Bob Foster spar
New York City
May 24, 1968

Bob Foster punching Dick Tiger
Bob Foster punching Dick Tiger New York City< May 27, 1968
Bob Foster punching Dick Tiger
New York City
May 27, 1968

Dick Tiger knocked down by Bob Foster
Dick Tiger knocked down by Bob Foster, New York City, May 27, 1968
Dick Tiger knocked down by Bob Foster.
New York City
May 27, 1968

(Sports Illustrated)

At some stage of their lives, most American males idolize a sports
figure. Boxing champions lend themselves particularly well to this
form of worship. Fighters like James Corbett, Jack Dempsey, Benny
Leonard, Sugar Ray Robinson, Joe Louis, Rocky Marciano and Muhammad
Ali not only were heroes of their times but also put their unique,
mythic stamps on very different generations of male American
I, too, got caught up in the aura and sweep of the great champions
of my lifetime. But the one fighter I identified with -- my fighter,
in other words -- was not in the same league with Leonard or Robinson
or Louis or Ali. A knowledgeable boxing critic might rank him a cut
above ''hell of a fighter.'' However, if you judged the entire man,
boxer and human being, few could match Richard Ihetu, the African who
fought under the nom de guerre Dick Tiger.
As with many professional boxers, the last part of Dick Tiger's
life was tragic. The difference in Tiger's case is that it wasn't
boxing that took the heart out of him; it was the dream that he tried
to support with the purses he earned after he had reclaimed the
middleweight title and then won the light heavyweight championship.

Years from now, when a bunch of guys in a bar are grumbling about
a mismatch on TV and start talking about good, maybe great, light
heavyweights, Dick Tiger will not be the name they settle on; it
could be Archie Moore, Bob Foster or Philadelphia Jack O'Brien. But
if they know their boxing, Tiger's name will at least be mentioned.
Helped by a notation scrawled in a spiral notebook, I recall the
day and hour I met Dick Tiger: ''Noon -- March 10.'' The year wasn't
recorded, but it was 1965. Tiger was meeting the press that day in
his dressing room at Madison Square Garden. It was two days before he
would fight Rocky Rivero, a tough middleweight from Argentina known
for his knockout punch. It didn't figure to be an easy evening for
Tiger. He was 35, and 15 months earlier he had lost his middleweight
championship in Atlantic City to Joey Giardello on what was conceded
to have been, by everyone but Giardello people, a warped hometown
Only four or five reporters had shown up, and we waited outside
the door to a 50th Street dressing room while the tap and slide of a
jump rope sounded from inside. Chickie Ferrara, Tiger's able trainer,
opened the door, and we filed in. I had seen Tiger a couple of times
on TV; I remembered one appearance in particular, a vicious 15-round
draw with Gene Fullmer. I would never have recognized Tiger in the
flesh. He was the darkest man I had ever seen. But that doesn't
entirely describe it: There was a dusky, deep plum color to his skin,
and even where he glistened with perspiration there were gray patches
that looked dry, very much like the skin of the fruit. I stared at
the knotty, heavily muscled body. I was almost oblivious to the
questions being asked and to his answers, but not quite. Our eyes met
momentarily, and I self- consciously scribbled some words in my
notebook that make only partial sense as I read them now:
''Giardello ducking me. Jersey isn't quitting.''
The reason for the intimate press conference quickly became
apparent as Tiger gave only the briefest answers to questions about
the match with Rivero. His special quality of voice and intelligence
hit me when, in a clipped colonial British accent braided with a
tribal African lilt, he said, ''The present champion refuses to meet
me again. He has defended only one time in 15 months and again it was
in his home city. I put it that this is not a courageous posture for
a so-called champion.'' Courageous posture? My god, who was this man?

''Why,'' a reporter asked, ''did you agree to fight Giardello in
Atlantic City, knowing that it was his backyard? Especially since you
were the champ?'' ''To a certain extent, it was because of his
problem in New York,'' said Tiger. The euphemistic ''problem'' was
well understood. Giardello hadn't had a license to box in New York
since 1957. It had been revoked because of what the athletic
commission called his ''undesirable connections.'' Word was out that
Giardello's management was mob controlled, or at least mob connected.
''But that is not the entire story,'' Tiger explained patiently.
''They offered me more money if I would fight him in Atlantic City. I
do not wish to seem the mercenary, gentlemen, but this is my
livelihood. I am not utterly disappointed -- with my purse I bought
a beauty shop for my sister and a bookstore in Lagos. Yes, these are
tribal scars.''
His last statement didn't make any sense. I didn't realize he was
speaking directly to me. I had been staring at his chest. His thick
finger moved over a band of thin, vertical scars, each about two
inches long, that formed a horizontal stripe almost from armpit to
armpit. ''Tribal scars,'' he repeated for my benefit. ''All Ibo boys
receive them when they have proved their courage.''
I was surprised by his easy assumption that we would know what an
Ibo was. I guessed correctly that it was the name of his tribe, his
people. Much of the world would come to know that name soon enough --
shamefully and tragically.
''A bookstore?'' I asked. ''Why would you want to buy a
He flashed a smile that revealed a gold tooth. ''Because I like to
read books. Har, har. Why else?''
Dick Tiger had not called his press conference to discuss books
or book- stores. Instead, he continued to impress upon the other
reporters his arguments about why he should get a rematch with
Giardello and why it should be soon.
His best and most practical point was that the only decent payday
available for Giardello was to fight the true champion, Dick Tiger.
If Giardello did not offer him a rematch, Tiger said that he would
step up to fight light heavyweights. The winner of the Willie
Pastrano-Jose Torres fight for that title in a few weeks would be a
real possibility, said Tiger. He also vowed that once he stepped up
in class, he would never come back down. And, thus, Giardello could
kiss goodbye a profitable return match.
When Tiger had finished his statement, a reporter asked, ''You own
a fur coat?'' The fighter's brow furrowed, and he shook his head. The
reporter went on, ''You should have one, because Giardello will give
you another shot just about the day after hell freezes over.''
There were some perfunctory questions about Rivero; then someone
asked if there was anything Tiger would like to say directly to
''I respect any man who is a champion,'' Tiger said. ''Truly. I do
not blame him as much as the people who are behind him. But now he
must finally act like a champion and defend against the challenger
who has the strongest claim.''
''Isn't he just waiting until you're too old, until you lose your
''He is as old as I!'' Tiger suddenly jumped into a ferocious
boxing % position; his face contorted into a sneer, and a snarl
rolled from a curled lip. He growled ominously, ''A Tiger never loses
his hunger.'' And, just as suddenly, he transformed himself back into
the affable, relaxed man who had charmed us. There was nothing left
to say. I waited until the other reporters had left.
Tiger asked me for whom I worked. ''I'm only a stringer for UPI.
Actually, I'm an English teacher,'' I said.
''Have you read Animal Farm?''
''Of course, Orwell.''
We spent the afternoon together, talking a bit about Orwell but
more about the implications of Animal Farm and the terrible pitfalls
of revolutionary politics. He seemed to have a personal interest. He
showered and dressed. His brown suit was on the shabby side, the
jacket a shade lighter than the pants; his black shoes had gray
scuffs. We walked briskly down Eighth Avenue. He was carrying a
heavily twined package that he wanted to go out in the afternoon
mail. It was destined for Aba, Nigeria.
I couldn't believe that, less than an hour after I had met him, I
was walking in Manhattan with the former middleweight champion of the
world. I assumed passersby recognized the celebrity and, by strong
association, me, too. In truth, almost no one noticed us. Those who
did happen to glance our way might have assumed that we were a
middle-aged black delivery man and a winded white intellectual.
The Ibo tribal scars on his chest, Tiger told me as we wove
through the crowds, were made by a very sharp, very hot knife when he
was 10, unusually young for the initiation. No, they didn't hurt
particularly. Then he corrected himself: An Ibo boy did not allow
them to hurt. When we were finally forced to stop for traffic, Tiger
looked at me carefully and said, ''The politics of my country are a
cause of great concern to me. There could soon be civil insurrection.
The situation is classically Orwellian.''
All the way to the post office and then back uptown he explained
the volatile situation in his homeland. ''Although we are not the
majority,'' he said, ''my people have held leadership in Nigeria
since the British left. In recent years, military elements have taken
control. We Ibo are not basically a militaristic people, but we will
not permit ourselves to be shunted aside. Without the Ibo, my country
would be a disaster.''
Then he said something that all these years later I recall with
clarity even though I hadn't written it down, perhaps because events
have since conspired to underline its bitter irony. ''Our opponents
call the Ibo the Jews of Africa. It is meant as an insult. I
interpret it as a high compliment.''
A few blocks farther north -- we were now on Tenth Avenue -- Tiger
stopped in front of a tailor's shop. He went inside, and I followed.
He pulled off his suit jacket and showed the man behind the counter a
long tear in the satin lining. The owner persuaded Tiger that it
would be better to select a secondhand jacket from the racks in the
rear than to have his own jacket repaired. Tiger and the tailor
disappeared. When they returned, Tiger was wearing another brown
jacket, a shade darker than the pants this time. The man wanted $5.
They settled on $2.50, his old jacket and a ticket to the Rivero
That bout proved remarkably easy for Tiger. Rivero was paunchy and
moved as though he were fighting underwater. Every punch he attempted
was of the KO variety. Tiger was hit cleanly just twice in 5 1/2
rounds. The referee stopped the fight in the sixth after Rivero had
been knocked down for the first time in 54 professional fights. Tiger
must have known that Rivero was just showing up for a payday.
He stayed busy after Rivero with a big win against rugged
''Hurricane'' Carter. If Giardello's people were waiting for age to
catch up with Tiger, it didn't seem to be happening. It is true,
however -- and all experienced fight people know it -- that a fighter
usually becomes old overnight. One fight, he has it all; the next,
nothing. Call it the Dorian Gray syndrome. Sometimes that change
takes place during a fight. Sometimes a fighter can lose it in a
single round. Maybe some sign of deterioration was what Giardello's
people were looking for. Maybe Tiger was foolish for not showing it
to them by fighting a little below his top level, but he was, after
all, an Ibo and proud.
On the boxing beat, word was that if it were up to Giardello
alone, he would have fought Tiger a year ago, that he wasn't really
such a bad guy. The problem was his management. They weren't going to
risk this championship with a tiger like Tiger. They knew Tiger was
already having trouble making the weight: he had come in five pounds
over the limit for Rivero. The thing that must have really thrown
them was that the Nigerian, for all his threats, still refused to
take on legitimate light heavyweights.
The scuttlebutt also had it that when they felt Giardello had one
good fight in him, and if Tiger was still available, they would shoot
for that last, nice payday and, who knows, maybe even go out a
winner. The consensus among experts was that Giardello, although not
a big hitter, could still do a good deal of cumulative damage to a
fighter as stationary as Tiger.
Then Giardello got rid of his manager and was given a license to
box in New York. A title match with Tiger in October 1965 was made
for Madison Square Garden. Giardello, as champion, dictated the
terms: $50,000 or 40% of the gate (live and home TV) while Tiger
would get $15,000 or 20%. I asked Tiger about the split, and he
said, ''He takes the lion's share, but I will take the Tiger's.''
His wit might have caused him to smile in self-appreciation, but it
didn't. He was frowning. There was trouble at home, he told me. He
had been sending every penny there to help the Ibo cause, but he was
worried about his family, his property, and particularly about his
ability to concentrate on this crucial boxing match, 5,000 miles from
the place and people that mattered most in his life.
''The world is never without its ironies,'' said the man with
tribal scars. ''Orwell understood that.''
During the week before the fight there was heavy betting. The
early money liked Giardello at 6 to 5. Then Tiger support came in,
and it was ''pick 'em.'' Then it was Tiger at 6 to 5; then, two days
before the bout, 8 to 5 Tiger. By fight time the odds were down to 7
to 5 Tiger.
More than 17,000 fans showed up at the Garden and paid more than
$160,000, so both fighters were sure of earning a lot more than their
guarantees. Frank Sinatra was supposed to be there. Mickey Mantle and
Yogi Berra had already been seen. I spotted Sugar Ray Robinson and
Rocky Graziano. There were more men in evening jackets and women
wearing furs than I had ever seen before at ringside.
And certainly more Africans than I had seen anywhere before. They
paraded through the crowd, some of them in tribal robes whose colors
had such a dark intensity about them that they made the garments seem
not only exotic but vaguely dangerous. Most of the men wore flat
hats with golden tassels.
Tiger came out first from the 50th Street side, and with his
appearance a large West African drum began to thunder rhythmically
from the darkness at one end of the arena. Its beat was alien but
compelling to the huge crowd of New Yorkers. They clapped and
stamped out a march beat, but the drum dominated the arena, as
foreboding as the drums in The Emperor Jones.
The fighters both weighed the precise limit of 160 pounds, but
Tiger was two inches shorter. Above his white trunks, Tiger's body
was massive. Giardello seemed pink and soft by comparison; his dark
trunks made his body seem even paler.
At the bell, Tiger rushed across the ring and met the champ before
he was two steps out of his corner. Tiger threw punches that backed
Giardello against the ropes. A surprise tactic. Tiger had always been
a very cautious starter, especially in a 15-round fight. Giardello
couldn't get off the ropes and was taking solid body shots.
Significantly, each time Giardello smothered Tiger's attack and
appeared to hook the dark arms, referee Johnny LoBianco quickly
stepped in and had them fighting again. That favored Tiger. His
fists worked Giardello's softening body. The great tribal drum
thundered. Before the first round was over, Joey Giardello had
become an old fighter.
To his credit, Giardello didn't let it become a rout. No, it
wasn't a great fight, but it went 15 rounds and it was very
interesting. The decision was unanimous. I scored it nine rounds to
six. Dick Tiger was champion again. Africans in green- and-purple
robes leaped into the ring carrying a banner that read BIAFRA MUST
LIVE. Few in the Garden understood its meaning.
After that fight Tiger had an increasingly difficult time making
the middleweight limit. Also, he had developed a pain in his lower
back and right side, a result of the Giardello fight. Eventually, the
presence of blood in his urine became commonplace. Nevertheless,
Tiger defended his middleweight title against Emile Griffith in 1966.
Weakened by pain and by the debilitating need to lose weight to meet
the limit, he lost a split decision. Then, eight months later, on
Dec. l6, he made good at last on his threat to move up into the light
heavyweight class. He won the championship easily by a decision over
Jose Torres.
He didn't stay long in the U.S. to enjoy it. There was great
trouble at home. The Ibo of eastern Nigeria had seceded from the
central government. They called their new country Biafra. The civil
war that followed became a rout. The Biafrans appealed for arms, for
aid. None was forthcoming: The Nigerian central government controlled
the army -- and the oil -- in black Africa's richest
petroleum-producing country.
Tiger returned to Biafra to fight another African in an exhibition
match at Port Harcourt, a few miles from his home in Aba. It was a
glorious day for the Ibo, and Tiger donated his purse to the
Biafran rebels. Later he would donate even more when, as a
38-year-old father of seven, he volunteered in the army of Biafra.
As a second lieutenant, he trained soldiers in physical exercises.
After his exhibition bout in Biafra, he returned to New York and
gave Torres a rematch at the Garden. Like their first fight, it drew
a pretty good crowd, and Tiger, giving away about 10 pounds, again
won by a decision. But this was the only touch of triumph in Dick
Tiger's life then. The ''Jews of Africa'' were being slaughtered. He
could get no word about the fate of his family. (As he later learned
that they were either dead or imprisoned.) He could not go home. His
properties in Lagos had been confiscated -- his apartments, his
service station in Aba, the beauty parlor and cosmetics shop, the
bookstore, the Mercedes, the tens of thousands of dollars saved by
the man in secondhand suits -- all were gone. Biafra, the dream, was
gone, too.
And soon -- too soon -- his title was also gone. In May 1968,
Tiger was knocked out two minutes into the fourth round by Bob
Foster. It was the only time Tiger had ever been knocked out. Perhaps
he should have quit then. The painful spasms in his lower back came
more frequently, but he couldn't quit. He was a political exile in
New York. He had no other salable skill.
Tiger fought four more bouts in New York, winning three and losing
one, a 10-round decision to Griffith. The fights gave him just enough
money to live on. After retiring in 1971 he worked as a porter at the
American Museum of Natural History, commuting by subway from a
furnished room in the Bedford- Stuyvesant section of Brooklyn. In
October 1971 he was stricken at work by stabbing pains in his back,
right side and abdomen. It was an attack so severe that he fell to
his knees. He was taken to St. Vincent's Hospital in Greenwich
Village for observation.
No treatment was possible. He had cancer of the liver, acute and
advanced. He told me, ''The United States is a very good country, a
very nice country, but Biafra is my home. I will die in Biafra.''
Technically speaking, in 1971 no such place existed. But the
Nigerian government permitted Tiger to return to Aba, to his Ibo
home. For days after his return, thousands of visitors -- mourners,
really -- from miles around walked the hot, dusty roads to Aba. When
they found Dick Tiger's house, they saw a muscular but pain-withered
boxer sitting in front, in the shade of a solitary acacia tree. He
died on Dec. 14, 1971. END

Copyright 1986 Time Inc.
SAM TOPEROFF Sam Toperoff's ''Sugar Ray Leonard and,
HIS AFRICAN HOMELAND. , Sports Illustrated, 10-13-1986, pp 10.

100 Greatest Players of All-Time
#42 Chuck Bednarik

photo from Penn sports info

Chuck Bednarik, Pennsylvania
Center, 1945-1948

He's listed as a center, but Chuck Bednarik was truly one of college football greatest overall players. Before the age of specialization in college football, Bednarik played both ways as a dominant lineman on offense and a devastating linebacker on defense. There wasn't a tougher or meaner player to ever step on the field known for his intimidation and his iron will playing all 60 minutes on both sides of the ball. He's known more as one of the NFL's greatest players, but he was just as good, and more dominant, in college.

Bednarik's story is much more interesting than just his battles on the gridiron, his real battles made him a hero before ever going to Penn.

The war hero: Bednarik flew on 30 combat missions over Germany as a gunner during World War II. As much praise and as many accolades as he received on the football field, the best honors were from his war exploits as he was highly decorated for his honor in battle.

The 60-minute man: You couldn't get him off the field. He became the first offensive lineman to ever win the Maxwell Award as the nation's top football player in 1948 and finished 3rd in the Heisman balloting, but he was just as good at linebacker as his NFL career would show. The 1947 Quakers went undefeated in 1947 for the first time in 39 years led by a defense that allowed only 35 points in their 8 games. The only blemish in the 7-0-1 season was against Army who tied them 7-7.

The award: While he was more known for his talents at center, Bednarick's name lives in college football with the Chuck Bednarik Award going to the nation's best defensive player.

The pro star: The Philadelphia Eagles drafted Bednarik with the number one pick in 1948 as a center. They got their money's worth as he was an all-pro in 1949 and 1950 before switching over to linebacker. On defense, he won six straight all-pro awards. In 1960, the Eagles were hit hard by injuries so he played on both sides of the ball for most of the season winning another all-pro award as a linebacker. He made two famous tackles that year beginning with a brutal hit on the New York Giants' Frank Gifford knocking him out for, effectively, a year and a half. His brightest moment was in the 1960 championship stopping Green Bay's Jimmy Taylor just short of the goal line as time ran out in the 17-13 win. He played 58 minutes in that title game.In 1969, he was voted by a group of sportswriters, former players and coaches as the greatest center of all-time.


  • College Football Hall of Fame - 1969
  • Maxwell Award - 1948
  • 3rd in Heisman Trophy - 1948
  • Consensus All-American - 1947, 1948
  • NFL All-Pro - 1949 -1956, 1960
  • Pro Football Hall of Fame - 1967
  • All-Time 50 Year NFL Team - 1970
  • 75th Anniversary NFL Two-Way Team

Chuck Bednarik
8x10 B&W photo autographed by Chuck Bednarik of Bednarik standing over a knocked out Frank Gifford inscribed by Chuck "This game is over, Sorry Frank,HOF".

Intellectual diversity? not on campus
Jeff Jacoby (archive)

December 4, 2004 | printer friendly version Print | email to a friend Send

The left-wing takeover of American universities is an old story. As far back as the 1930s, Irving Kristol recalled in "Memoirs of a Trotskyist," City College of New York was so radical that "if there were any Republicans at City -- and there must have been some -- I never met them, or even heard of their existence." Soon the virus had spread to the nation's most elite institutions. In 1951, William F. Buckley Jr. created a sensation with "God and Man at Yale," which documented the socialist and atheist worldview that even then prevailed in the classrooms of the Ivy League institution he had just graduated from.

Today, campus leftism is not merely prevalent. It is radical, aggressive, and deeply intolerant, as another newly-minted graduate of another prominent university -- Ben Shapiro of UCLA -- shows in "Brainwashed," a recent best-seller. "Under higher education's facade of objectivity," Shapiro writes, "lies a grave and overpowering bias" -- a charge he backs up with example after freakish example of academics going to ideological extremes.

No surprise, then, that when researchers checked the voter registration of humanities and social-science instructors at 19 universities, they discovered a whopping political imbalance. The results, published in The American Enterprise in 2002, made it clear that for all the talk of diversity in higher education, ideological diversity in the modern college faculty is mostly nonexistent.

So, for example, at Cornell, of the 172 faculty members whose party affiliation was recorded, 166 were liberal (Democrats or Greens) and 6 were conservative (Republicans or Libertarians). At Stanford, the liberal-conservative ratio was 151-17. At San Diego State, it was 80-11. At SUNY Binghamton, 35-1. At UCLA, 141-9. At the University of Colorado-Boulder, 116-5. At the University of Texas-Austin, 94-15. Reflecting on these gross disparities, The American Enterprise's editor, Karl Zinsmeister, remarked: "Today's colleges and universities . . . do not, when it comes to political and cultural ideas, look like America."

At about the same time, a poll of Ivy League professors commissioned by the Center for the Study of Popular Culture found that more than 80 percent of those who voted in 2000 had cast their ballots for Democrat Al Gore, while just 9 percent backed Republican George W. Bush. Asked to name the greatest president of the last 40 years, 26 percent chose Bill Clinton; 4 percent said Ronald Reagan. While 64 percent said they were "liberal" or "somewhat liberal," only 6 percent described themselves as "somewhat conservative" -- and none at all as "conservative."

And the evidence continues to mount.

The latest campaign-finance records reveal that the most partisan organizations in America, as measured by employee donations to a presidential candidate, are the University of California and Harvard. Together, the two institutions accounted for $942,000 in contributions to the Kerry campaign -- 19 times the amount donated to the Bush campaign.

Last month, The New York Times reported that a new national survey of more than 1,000 academics shows Democratic professors outnumbering Republicans by at least 7 to 1 in the humanities and social sciences. At Berkeley and Stanford, according to a separate study that included professors of engineering and the hard sciences, the ratio of Democrats to Republicans is even more lopsided: 9 to 1.

Such one-party domination of any major institution is problematic in a nation where Republicans and Democrats can be found in roughly equal numbers. In academia, it is scandalous. It strangles dissent, suppresses debate, and causes minorities to be discriminated against. It is certainly antithetical to good scholarship. "Any political position that dominates an institution without dissent," writes Mark Bauerlein, an English professor at Emory, in The Chronicle of Higher Education, "deteriorates into smugness, complacency, and blindness. . . . Groupthink is an anti-intellectual condition."

Worse yet, it leads faculty members to abuse their authority. The American Council of Trustees and Alumni has just released the results of the first survey to measure student perceptions of faculty partisanship. The ACTA findings are striking. Of 658 students polled at the top 50 US colleges, 49 percent said professors "frequently comment on politics in class even though it has nothing to do with the course," 48 percent said some "presentations on political issues seem totally one-sided," and 46 percent said that "professors use the classroom to present their personal political views." That nearly half of the respondents expressed those views is all the more striking, since only 13 percent described themselves as conservative.

Academic freedom is not only meant to protect professors; it is also supposed to ensure students' right to learn without being molested. When instructors use their classrooms to indoctrinate and propagandize, they cheat those students and betray the academic mission they are entrusted with. That should be intolerable to honest men and women of every stripe -- liberals and conservatives alike.

"If this were a survey of students reporting widespread sexual harassment," says ACTA's president, Anne Neal, "there would be an uproar." That is because universities take sexual harassment seriously. Intellectual harassment, on the other hand -- like the one-party conformity it flows from -- they ignore. Until that changes, the scandal of the campuses will only grow worse.