The perception of allowing a blatanty racist judge authority over sanctioned bouts highlights the culture of tolerance toward extremist views at the WBA.
After displaying a pattern of deep racial bias against black political figures, black fighters, and other black athletes, Gloria Martinez Rizzo was suspended from her position as a WBA fight judge in April of 2021. The WBA barred Rizzo from judging any sanctioned fights for a period of 6 months due to the recent discovery of her history of racist activity online.
The racist tweets, messages and comments spread by WBA judge Gloria Martinez Rizzo were uncovered in light of a suspicious scorecard submission in a fight of Mykal Fox, a black fighter in Minneapolis. The other fighter shared Gloria Martinez Rizzos nationality and race.
The racist content shared by Rizzo went far beyond the boundaries of political banter or even trolling, highlighted by calls for the death of black activists. The tweets from Rizzo were unprofessional at best; but some of the content that she chose to share with the world as a representative of World Boxing Association qualifies as hate speech.
WBA chose to reinstate Rizzo after a six month suspension, despite WBA President Gilberto Mendoza’s original reading of the room. When Martinez’ history of racist tweets first came to light in April 2021, Mendoza placated the outrage of the boxing public by suspending Rizzo from judging WBA sanctioned fights for a period of 6 months.
Rizzo made a seemingly covert re-entry into judging in February but still managed to leave a splash on her official scorecard yet again. Now that the WBA apparently senses that public sentiments might have shifted somewhat, Rizzo has been scheduled to judge more fights between fighters from all different racial backgrounds. There’s been no sign of demotion or reassignment; the last fight she officiated was Trevor Bryan vs. Daniel Dubois for the WBA title.
Upcoming WBA Title Fights With Black Fighters
Gloria Martinez Rizzos schedule isn’t publicly available. The next WBA title match with a black fighter is coming up soon. Raymond “Savage” Ford defends his WBA Featherweight title against Richard “El Castigo” Medina on June 25th, 2022 in San Antonio, Texas. Spectators and fans, skeptical of the WBA’s seemingly hollow rhetoric pertaining to equality in judging, wait in anticipation for the identities of the judges for the upcoming bout.
If you think there should be no bias in the judging of boxing, contact the WBA to call for the permanent removal of Gloria Martinez Rizzo from the esteemed panel of World Boxing Associate fight judges.