Maybe they really do always return to the scene of the crime. Huh.
On February 10, 1992, an Indianapolis jury convicted boxer Mike Tyson of rape. On February 13, 2013, Tyson performs his one-man show at the Old National Centre, exactly one mile away from the Indianapolis hotel where the rape occurred. A date which is exactly one week after Tyson appeared on NBC’s Law & Order: SVU. Playing a rape victim, of all things, in what was an obvious sweeps stunt.
What? How do YOU celebrate the anniversary of YOUR high-profile rape trial?
21 years have passed since Mike Tyson was convicted of that crime. July 2012 marked the 21st “anniversary” of the assault on Desiree Washington at Indianapolis Canterbury Hotel. She was a Miss Black America contestant in town for the city’s epic, renowned annual Black Expo. He was a young boxer filled with
rape rage. The trial fascinated and horrified the nation, and – if memory serves this Lady Historian and Statistician – started 343 million conversations that featured the words, “Well, he shouldn’t have done it but why did she go to his hotel room?”
I feel conflicted about Tyson’s return. When someone has served his or her time (okay, so three years is not enough time for certain violent offenses, Mikey), you don’t have to like it but you have to move on. I don’t like that most convicts can’t vote so why would I be okay prohibiting them from earning money however they wish? And, Hell, I paid to see Carnage in the theaters so I’m clearly okay lining the pockets on the un-convicted.
So why have I rolled my eyes to the point of detachment each and every time I drive past the “Mike Tyson: The Undisputed Truth” marquee en route to my workplace in Indianapolis? Doesn’t he deserve to say his piece—albeit the sort of piece that gets stuck to your shoe—in the venue where it has the most meaning for him? I mean, I didn’t shake my fist when Tyson went on Katie Couric earlier this week to, again, deny the allegations that led to his conviction [TO THE APPLAUSE OF AAAAAALLLL THE LADIES IN THE AUDIENCE]. Hell, I even paid to see Tyson, the troubling, riveting documentary about Iron Mike. But, still, Tyson bringing his one-man show to the scene of the crime strikes me as a crass stunt. Tacky and cruel, not to mention incredibly stupid. Especially on the anniversary week of his polarizing conviction.
And I guess I’m not the only one: Tyson’s Wednesday (February 6) episode of Law & Order: SVU put up gutter ratings: 5.2 million people, the series’ lowest draw for a first-run episode. And the theater in Indianapolis has, both, taken down the marquee promoting Tyson’s show and canceled a second performance due to poor sales. Tickets are still available for the remaining show, for as much as $74 a pop.
$74? Geez, talk about taking advantage of people.
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