Sydney, Australia; Peter Dutton MP, Minister of the Immigration and Border Protection has officially denied the pound for pound king Floyd Mayweather jr’s visa application. The announcement will postpone and possibly cancel Mayweather’s planned publicity trip to Australia, which consisted of two planned events, one in Melbourne and the other in Sydney.
Assistant Minister for Immigration and Border Protection, Senator the Hon Michaelia Cash released this statement; “The Government takes very seriously its role in protecting the Australian community from the risk of harm by non-citizens who engage in criminal conduct and/or conduct that is of serious concern.”
The ruling was made following a campaign on the website change.org ; famous for banning Grand Theft Auto 5 and the Bible. The petition was originally started by Angela Burrows, a domestic crisis worker in Queensland, in what seemed to be little more than a publicity stunt.
This ruling sets a dangerous precedent for the Department of Immigration. The petition on change.org which reportedly received over 30,000 votes, allows anonymous people to vote as many times as want, regardless of where they live. The only information you are required to give are an email, which does not have to be in use, and a name. They presently have a petition live to ban the Bible from Target which has over 62,000 signatures.
Mayweather’s history of domestic abuse hardly justifies the ruling. In 2012 he served two months in jail for reportedly pulling the hair and twisting the arm of one of the mother of his children. While the crimes he committed are shocking and not to be taken lightly, he is far from someone who would endanger the Australian public as Michaelia Cash’s statement insinuated.
In fact, his visit would have done far more good for Australia than harm. His visit promised to stimulate the stagnating Australian economy. In addition to that, Mayweather had committed to a number of charitable causes and would have been able to raise thousands of dollars for those in need, specifically the homeless and disadvantaged children.
Rev Bill Crews stated: “Mr Mayweather’s celebrity will give our charity and the work we do great exposure over the coming months, which will assist us greatly to help even more people in Australia.
“The charitable funds raised during Mr Mayweather’s time in Australia will be used in the following manner: providing food and health and wellbeing programs for homeless, disabled, disadvantaged and needy people and children, including Aboriginals.”
Mayweather’s Australian publicist Max Markson is still holding out hope that Mayweather can appeal the visa denial. “I’m still very confident that we’ll get Floyd Mayweather in Australia,” Markson said. “He hasn’t offended for almost five years; he’s done his time for the crimes. I believe there are other issues there. “He’s of no danger to the Australian Community. He’s coming here with his 14-year-old daughter and her mother.”
Let’s hope that Peter Dutton and the Department of Immigration come to their senses and grant Mayweather a visa. The only people who will be hurt by their decision are those that are the most in need of help.