Today the guy best known for shooting and killing an unarmed 17-year-old had his undeserved celebrity validated. George Zimmerman was challenged to a so-called Celebrity Boxing match by an actual celebrity, rapper DMX.
Now it’s true that the “celebrity” in Celebrity Boxing is singular, so we can pretend the designation only applies to DMX. A more accurate name for the match would be “Celebrity-and-Guy-Known-for-Killing-an-Unarmed-Teenager Boxing Match.”
Zimmerman is by no means the first guy with dubious celebrity credentials to get involved in these exhibitionist boxing fetes. Tonya Harding, for instance, founght in a similar match back in 2002. But Harding was known for something other than her involvement in the assault on Nancy Kerrigan in 1994: She started out as a world-renowned figure skater.
Before he killed Trayvon Martin, Zimmerman was a neighborhood-watch coordinator. Now he’s selling his lackluster paintings, or, more likely, stenciled-over photos from Getty Images, for $100,000 on Ebay and he’s getting to perform in the same space as people like Dustin Neil Diamond, who played Screech in Saved by the Bell.
Of course there’s a long tradition of people using their infamy as a way to make money or converting that infamy into another moment in the limelight. Take Anthony Weiner’s 23-year-old sexting partner, Sydney Leathers, who capitalized on her notoriety by modeling for a leather apparel company and doing some filming for porn company Vivid.
But what Leathers did was at worst, distasteful. It’s certainly a far cry from killing a black kid in a hoodie and then going on to reap celebrity status for it. That has got to be a “celebrity culture” nadir of sorts.
Or maybe the nadir was that time O.J. Simpson tried to sell the knife he allegedly used to kill his wife for $5 million? At least he knew it was sick enough to keep it a secret.
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"American spies collected information last summer revealing that senior Russian intelligence and political officials were discussing how to exert influence over Donald J. Trump through his advisers." The conversations centered around Paul Manafort, who was campaign chairman at the time, and Michael Flynn, former national security adviser and then a close campaign surrogate. Both men have been tied heavily with Russia and Flynn is currently at the center of the FBI investigation into possible collusion between the Trump campaign and Russia.
"Former FBI Director Robert Mueller has been cleared by U.S. Department of Justice ethics experts to oversee an investigation into possible collusion between then-candidate Donald Trump's 2016 election campaign and Russia." Some had speculated that the White House would use "an ethics rule limiting government attorneys from investigating people their former law firm represented" to trip up Mueller's appointment. Jared Kushner is a client of Mueller's firm, WilmerHale. "Although Mueller has now been cleared by the Justice Department, the White House may still use his former law firm's connection to Manafort and Kushner to undermine the findings of his investigation, according to two sources close to the White House."
Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Richard Burr (R-NC) and ranking member Mark Warner (D-VA) will subpoena two businesses owned by former National Security Advisor Michael Flynn. Burr said, "We would like to hear from General Flynn. We'd like to see his documents. We'd like him to tell his story because he publicly said he had a story to tell."