A decision by the University of Texas System to cancel a boxing match in UT-El Paso’s Sun Bowl stadium irked Sen. Jose Rodriguez, D-El Paso, especially since security concerns were cited because of border violence.
Rodriguez has spoken out against what he believes are inflated reports of border violence, which have not affected metropolitan areas, such as El Paso.
A boxing match between Julio César Chávez Jr. and Andy Lee scheduled for June 16 has been cancelled because of security reasons, according to an El Paso Times story.
“I strongly oppose the decision by the UT System to cancel this fight, especially without consulting local officials regarding any potential threat. This is just one more example of what happens when our state leaders disregard the facts by falsely calling border communities ‘war zones’ without any evidence to support their claims,” Rodriguez said.
The rest of his statement:
“Decisions such as these hurt our local economy and tarnish the image of border communities. El Paso is not only one of the safest communities in Texas, it is one of the safest in the nation.
“There have been several events such as this in El Paso — including a boxing match at UTEP last weekend — with no incidents. The decision to cancel this fight due to the fears of border violence only reinforces to the negative perception of El Paso and will have a lasting impact on the community for years to come.
“If decisions are going to be made without solid evidence of actual threats of violence at events such as this, then border communities from El Paso to Brownsville will be irreparably harmed.”