WORLD BOXING COUNCIL NEWS
July 8, 2013 – Mexico City.
From the office of WBC President Dr. José Sulaimán:
The following is one of the weekly “Hook to the Liver” columns that are published in El Universal every Sunday. From July 7, translated from Spanish:
HOOK TO THE LIVER
By José Sulaimán
The Evolution Of Gratitude
As the managers of sports organizations, and especially in a very delicate one such as boxing, we’re always exposed to feelings and reactions of the people with whom we live and work.
Last Tuesday at our press weekly press conference, a very revered boxer, Ibeth Zamora, whose nickname is “La Roca,” and who won her light flyweight world title in Japan, achieved this.
I was surprised that she gave me a gift – a small, beautifully crafted statue of an Aztec warrior, adorned with a small green belt of our beloved WBC.
Ibeth was showing gratitude and loyalty. Along with dignity, these are the most sacred feelings of a human being.
Even that has changed in boxing. Boxers used to always respect those who formed them and gave them opportunities to become someone.
Gratitude and loyalty were basic and fundamental. It was carried in the heart and it was expressed with pride. In Mexico, managers including Cuyo Hernández, Pancho Rosales, Lupe Sánchez, and Negro Pérez were maestros of masters who used to instill loyalty, gratitude, honor and dignity … but now they’re gone.
Although these feelings remain embedded in most of boxers all around the world, there are some who can’t handle fame and believe they own the world. They become vain and arrogant because they feel mighty and powerful with money and they forget where they came from.
I remember talking about this with the great Mexican champions Carlos Zárate, Lupe Pintor, “Chiquita” González and Pipino Cuevas. Boxing nowadays has cast aside honor. Now, too many boxers only care about money, and not about anything else.
But it’s not their fault! These are the times of unbridled competition of television companies throughout the world. Promoters, who only care about their image, only do what television companies tell them to do.
These are the times where TV companies choose only a few promoters and ignore others or make them beg. These are times where loyalty, respect and gratitude seem to have passed into history. These are times of money, and promoters say … “Where the millions are, I’m there.”
But there are still many of us in boxing commissions in this world where the commitment to the boxers, their health, their lives, and their protection is paramount. This is the driving force which motivates us, where loyalty, honor, and dignity still do exist, where respect for history and past glories are our motivation, where our struggle and commitment is still the engine that drives us to save this great sport, the oldest of all in the world and at the Olympic Games.
We have to prevent this sport from turning into a degrading show business. That would be the end – something that true boxing fans simply cannot allow.
Thank you for reading my thoughts.