This photo is the last one I ever took with my father. We were at breakfast surrounded by Muay Thai…
Black Lives Matter
I do not actively follow politics, and I do not consider myself a political person. However, I believe strongly that all humans should be treated fairly and equally. I also believe in equal opportunity for all. It is simply not right to discriminate on race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, nationality, education, social status, etc. I genuinely don’t see these things when I meet people. I have friends from all walks of life, many nationalities, and different races. I have good friends who are billionaires and I have good friends who come from the slums. Everyone is equal in my eyes. You see, we all belong to humanity. We might all come from different backgrounds, cultures, religions, races, and beliefs, but we all dream, laugh, love, and cry. As Genki Sudo preached a long time ago, WE ARE ALL ONE.
Black lives matter. They really do. I am grateful to my African American friends for teaching me about their history and for opening my eyes. I don’t pretend to know what it is like to live as a black person in the US, but I do know what it means to be human. What has happened (and continues to happen on a daily basis) to African Americans is nothing short of injustice. It is the poorest reflection of humanity, and yet we continue to allow a big segment of the human race to suffer. For 240 years, African Americans were slaves. For another 100 years afterwards, African Americans were segregated. It is only in the past several decades that they were given equal rights. However, the truth is that racism still exists today and the consequences of hundreds of years of injustice remain. African Americans are treated unfairly, abused, and profiled by authorities and society. They definitely do not have the same starting line in life as others. It is time to take a stand against this injustice. It is time to take a stand against this suffering. It is time to take a stand against this racism. I stand with African Americans. I stand with black people everywhere. I stand with humanity.
I lived in the US for approximately 18 years, and it saddens me that I do not recognize this America today. The walls of hatred, racism, and fear divide it in ways I have never seen. The America I remember is the great country of diversity, acceptance, and tolerance. The America I remember is the great country built by immigrants and people of all backgrounds. The America I remember is the great country where everyone is created equal with the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness. The US Constitution is one of the most extraordinary documents of mankind. In fact, I owe a lot to America. It gave me the precious opportunity to live the American Dream. I went from struggling on $4 a day in poverty to achieving the life of my dreams. In many ways, I am indebted to America for the life it gave me. I can tell you from personal experience that America is a truly great country. It was built on a bedrock of values and principles that have endured the passage of time. Despite the darkness today, I know that America will find a way to unite again and heal as a nation. #BlackLivesMatter #WeAreONE
Chatri Sityodtong is a self-made entrepreneur and lifelong martial artist from Thailand. His rags-to-riches life story has inspired millions around the world on BBC News, CNN, Financial Times, Bloomberg TV, CNBC, Channel NewsAsia, and other major media. He is the Founder, Chairman, and CEO of ONE Championship, Asia’s largest global sports media property in history with a global broadcast to over 2.7 billion potential viewers across 150+ countries around the world. He is also the star of the Asian edition of The Apprentice, the award-winning, global reality TV series. Forbes most recently selected Sityodtong as one of Asia’s next generation tycoons. Sityodtong was also named “Asia’s King of Martial Arts” by the Financial Times and the “2nd Most Powerful Person in Sports in Asia” by FOX Sports. He is also an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at INSEAD, Europe’s top business school. Inducted recently into the Black Belt Hall of Fame, Sityodtong is a Kru in Muay Thai and a Purple Belt in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu. Sityodtong holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and a BA from Tufts University.