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17 May 2011

Comments

Antonio

I remember growing up, I use to have a serious crush on Ray Leonard. I believe his oldest son is a few years older than me, but thought he was cute too. I'm not even shocked anymore. So many coaches, mentors or whatever...do it just to have access to these attractive young boys. Thank God my parents were around.

webtel

...? If this oral attack happened "several years later" after he was 15, then he was of age to stop him before he put his mouth there. Sometimes these issues really do get into grey areas. Once he put his hand there, then you sat long enough to open your pants and his mouth gets there. Is this abuse or a young man taking a minute to decide he didn't want to go that route? Just asking for others opinions not looking to start an argument.

Bernie B

This has happened way too often for many boys and teenagers who as men supress those memories out of FEAR! Good for him. I wish I had a dollar for every boy growing up who had to face some sort of unwanted sexual advance from another male peer or adult --I would have millions of dollars.

@webtel -- when you TRUST an older adult you never expect such things to happen and when it happens -- it's a mind fuck. Your mind freezes up or shuts down because you do not know how to process it. You're thinking that "this really can't be happening" .. you let it ride out until it becomes the OMG moment (this dude is really trying to get into my pants), and either you stop it or are too scared to stop it -- or even worse, the adult has gotten so deep into your head at that point that he may convince you that you may like it.

Ask any women who has been abused by a man as a child, and it's the same damn story.

MEN SPEAK UP! IT DOES NOT MAKE YOU ANY LESS OF A MAN TO ADMIT THE TRUTH!

Miguel

You know - I thought the same thing. First time he was 15. second time he was at least 20. You're a boxer -and you know how to defend yourself. But who knows how deeply this mentor/trainer was in his head. Probably convinced him this would be the last time and may have even made him feel guilty for all the help he has been in his career. Sadly -we'll never know the other guy's POV since he's long deceased. I am proud to see all of these men of influence speaking out and sharing their stories. Years and years ago -this type of thing happened and stories would be taken to the grave...but if speaking out helps get over the past and helps those still locked in it to find strength..I say shout from the highest rooftop fellas! Break the silence!

Troy

Funny how everyone wants to conveniently 'break the silence', slap a label on something and neatly catagorize what went down and all the feelings that went with it. Well guess what, it is not the package that can get the fast ribbon and bow send off into a corner and no, you can't just talk it out. You ultimately live with it and no one can you tell you how to really adjust or deal with it. Good for Mr. Leonard, his truth has a way out -a book. But will we ever know the what went down and how anyone REALLY got through it? The jury is still out and forever will be. A continous mind f*uck

Joe

I heard, some long time ago, that Sugar Ray was packing major dick. As a young man, this coach probably saw his whole body and must've known what kind of dick he had. He probably got close to Sugar Ray, in a lot of ways, and wanted to suck him. At that point, the boxer was probably legal, sexually active, and comfortable with the guy. (Comfortable enough to listen to his advice, anyway)

I think this can be really complicated, in a lot of ways. The coach may have been an excellent advisor, as well as attracted to his 'boys' he coached. It wouldn't be the first time. Ray, who trusted this guy with his boxing 'career' choices probably had to really work hard mentally to make sense of what happened and how to 'respond'. People can get 'frozen' while trying to figure all of that out.

I'm glad he's shared his story. A whole LOT of boys and men and having sex with boys and men, in a whole lot of situations, and for a whole lot of reasons, my buddy always says. It's a whole lot of complicated, too.

soulbrotha

Does anyone know if Sugar Ray is a friend of the LGBT community?

aaronthemoor

i guess if you start talking about being sexually abused at the ripe ole age of 20, no one will discuss how you wantonly beat up on women when you were over the non-adolescent age of 30. i can't shed crocodile tears over boxers whose hands are registered as lethal weapons who happen to like slapping around women.

mike tyson also claims to have been fondled by a boxing coach when he was fifteen, but there are also stats that say that mike tyson was built like a linebacker by the age of twelve. mike tyson just doesn't seem like the type to let a dude feel on his dick if that's not what he's in to. this is also the same mike tyson who once taunted an espn reporter with:***i'll fck you til you love me, punk***that line just doesn't roll off your tongue unless you've enacted it somewhere in your life. most homophobes also have a problem with treating women as punching bags and pieces of meat. show me a homophobe and i'll show you a woman abuser and show me a woman abuser and there will be a homophobe underneath.

sugar ray has his own story to tell for his own reasons ($$$$$) and i'll leave that up to the pristine conscience of sir sweetness, but there are thousands of coaches who have had athletes soak in a tub of hot water and epsom salts for therapeutic purposes and it's not construed as sexual lasciviousness.

as for todd bridges giving people courage to find their inner honesty, is this the same todd bridges who gleefully describes his sexual exploits on the set of different strokes with dana plato who everyone knows was a fragile, confused young woman who ultimately took her own life before she was 30?

if todd bridges is so sensitive to child abuse, does he give a damn about describing in intimate details screwing a young girl on set so her son can read about it?

Gurlene

After Marvin Hagler (the champion at that time) took the ENTIRE fight to Leonard with Leonard NOT ONCE forcing Hagler to back up but was declared the winner (and new champion) I can not believe one word of HIS version of what happened. To beat a champion you MUST take the fight to the champion or score with some decisive blows to the champion. None of the above did Leonard do and Hagler NEVER entered the ring again after that verdict/farce.

What I would believe is that this coach was gay and Leonard (let's face it, he is excellent at manipulation and public relations) knew if he didn't go along with it his boxing career would be over. He dropped his trunks on que and he knows it.

I don't think I need to keep on wondering what Juanita must have said/called him to make him spit in her face. I have never known him to be an enemy of the gay community but don't remember him as a supporter either.

webtel

Bernie I do get your point and believe that these things do happen far too often. I'm just beginning to wonder how fine the line between what your saying and what I am saying. A young naive boy who hasn't seen much in the world...that I can see. But a 20ish male whose been boxing for years and has to have some type of aggressive nature? I just feel reflexes would have made you jump when another man first puts his hand there.

Anyway, I'm not a fan of Leonard but if this happened then I'm glad he spoke up and I agree more men should. Kudos to him!

CindyBirdsongtheGoodSupreme

Are we sure that the text of the book states that the sexual assault by the coach took place "several years later"? It is reported that way but I would wait to see the text before drawing any conclusions about Leonard's response to the assault.

Former COGIC

What Cindy said.

I'm going to have to be the one to go there. These comments are Exhibit A why so many people in our black community will not come forward if there are abused, harassed, raped, touched, molested or such. It's the exact same comments that accompanied each of the Eddie Long accusers. And the gay man who worked at PUSH. Blaming the victim.

"He was old enough!" "Why didn't he fight back?" "He was 15?" "He was 17?" "He was 20" Some fool at top even wanted to "hear the other side" (No one was named, why would you care anyway?) Is sexual abuse so common in the Black community and Black gay community that our first instinct is to discredit the accuser? Or are so many of us victims and perpetuating the cycle?

Cindy has an excellent point. The news account could be missing or wrong on some details. Or maybe Ray didn't tell the whole story. Maybe it was more "sexual harassment" than sexual abuse. Maybe he didnt feel that he had a choice.

But it is disgraceful that every time I come to this blog and someone is making accusations of violence or abuse, the majority of commenters are trying to play Nancy Drew or District Attorney.

This is why it is so difficult for black gay men to come out, for boys and girls to tell people they have been abused, and for men and women to share their stories. Some of you are even defending and rationalizing what the coach allegedly did and blaming for Ray for what he didnt do.

Former COGIC

Rod and others, sorry for going on a soapbox but this is very personal with me.

Cindy, Gurlene and Bernie all make very good points. Cindy, I always love your comments. Aaron, I agree with some of what you said. I totally agree about abusing his wife, Todd Bridges being a poor example, etc. But just because "thousands of coaches" don't abuse or sexually harass their players doesn't mean that it never happens. That's makes absolutely no sense at all.

Joe: This isn't BGC or A4A. And I'll leave it at that.

www.google.com/accounts/o8/id?id=AItOawnHC4FU4w8n7BJfGoPMeRI14pY_PUGOFyo

Heard this story on Tom Joyner this AM. some raised ??? about the legitimacy of his claims saying for his age and a boxer. it sounds like we are NOT being told the wholoe story. They implied that maybe he went slong with the act and is now using it to say it messed with his head. how convenient to disclose this when the alleged perp. is dead. the man has issues with drug abuse. Is he now attributing this to his years of abuse. there were rumors about him and that guy from the new edition/ Jonny Gill who was alleged to have moved into his home. who knows the REAL truth.

webtel

I don't take my comments back. I simply posed a question on a board where I thought ADULTS could have a conversation. Those reports were said to be quotes from the book so I posed my question based on that. If others have problems with a mature conversation....TOUGH! Adults should be able to post honest opinions and get mature differing points of view without being accused of "Exhibit A why so many people in our black community will not come forward if there are abused, harassed, raped, touched, molested or such". Pull your claws in ladies and remember we can have adult conversations as Men. (and Ladies if actual females do post on this board). My original query stands.

Greg G

Webtel: No one asked you to take your comments back. The story is out there, you can say what you want, others are free to respond.

Google Accounts: The coach is NOT being slandered because he was NEVER named. And how can you talk about Leonard spreading rumors when you are doing the exact same thing? I never heard anything about any gay sex between SRL and any dude from New Edition.

COGIC is spot on. I've said the exact same thing myself many times. It's a very curious reaction that occurs whenever abuse, sexual assault or molestation charges are publicly aired in the Black gay community. The person who makes then is immediate criticized and invariably it becomes about blaming the victim. There is a violent predisposition to blame the victim ... probably because it happened to many of us and we were blamed by our mothers, fathers and churches.

Lots of healing needs to be done here. So sad that many of us resent that others are attempting to find their own truth.

Derrick from Philly

I'm not sure if Black folks are more relunctant to talk about the ugly incidents that happen in their lives, but it does seem to be a common trait--especially among Black seniors. It might go back to slavery time--this hiding of painful memories.

This may have something to do with Black folks mixed reactions to films like "The Color Purple", "Precious" and "Antwan Fisher". It's not just about "airing dirty laundry" for some it brings back very painful memories. I know I had great difficulty watching Precious and Antwan.

Some people go through life refusing to remember or discuss their painful memories. THat "strategy" can lead to problems with mental illness or addiction; but others... well, they simply keep on keepin' on.

The comments to this entry are closed.

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