Trump pushed for events.
Donald Trump is leaving the White House and it will be up to historians to scrutinize his four years as President. But Trump’s sports decisions and statements can be judged now. He will be remembered as criticizing and condemning athlete’s protests. His words came down hard against football and basketball players protesting police brutality and he told owners to fire protesting players during his first year as president. He will be remembered for teams skipping a White House tradition of having a championship team honored in a national ceremony. Trump pardoned Jack Johnson, supported the Los Angeles bid for the 2028 Summer Olympics and favored the 2026 joint United States-Canadian and Mexican try for the Men’s World Cup in soccer. The 2026 and 2028 events will come to the United States. Trump also pressured college football conferences to play football during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Johnson was the first African American boxer to hold the world’s heavyweight championship. In 2018, Trump pardoned Johnson for violating the Mann Act in May 1913. The Mann Act was supposed to stop human sex trafficking but instead in some cases it was used to prosecute men for premarital and extramarital sex and interracial relationships. Johnson was married to a white woman. Arizona Senator John McCain had pushed for a pardon for years but Trump took up the case for a pardon after actor Sylvester Stallone called him and brought up the prospect for a Johnson pardon. Trump marginalized minor league baseball players in the 2018 federal budget, utilizing a mechanism to suppress the salaries of Minor League players. The 2018 budget created a change to the Fair Labor Standards Act of 1938. The players received as little as $1,100 a month for four 40-hour or more monthly work weeks per the Save America’s Pastime Act. Trump left his mark on sports.
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