John McCain has introduced a resolution requesting a posthumous presidential pardon for Jack Johnson, the first black heavyweight champion of the world, the LA Times reports. Johnson suffered what McCain calls a “racially motivated conviction” in 1913 for dating a white woman. Prosecutors said he’d violated the Mann Act, which forbade taking women across state lines for “immoral purposes.”
“This resolution...would not right this injustice,” McCain said. “But it would recognize it, and shed light on the achievements of an athlete who was forced into the shadows of bigotry and prejudice.” The resolution is co-sponsored by Republican New York Rep. Peter King.