Professional boxer Rod Salka should have left his politics at home. Instead he chose to step into the ring at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California, on Thursday night wearing shorts that read "America First" and patterned with a brick wall. Not only was it a direct insult to many boxing fans, but it was clearly meant to rattle his opponent, Mexican boxer Francisco Vargas. It didn't work.
Vargas, a former junior lightweight title holder, knocked Salka down in the fifth round. Salka recovered but then was sent to the mat again in the sixth round and Vargas was declared the winner with a TKO.
Asked about the shorts after the fight, Vargas kept it professional, saying:
I was surprised when [Salka] was coming to the ring. I saw him dressed with a wall on his clothes, but I kept calm. I was focused on making my fight and on my plan. ... Once we were already in the ring, the wall was an extra ingredient [for my motivation to win], so I gave it everything. Whatever it is I represent Mexico and I feel that wall is against all my countrymen.
Twitter was feeling zero sympathy for Salka's loss.
LOL who is that dude? He looks like he instantly regrets his wardrobe choice— Ryan Songalia (@ryansongalia) April 13, 2018
Francisco Vargas, Mexican Olympian, in the ring on ESPN vs Rod Salka. Salka wearing red/white/blue trunks that read “America 1st” & are decorated with faux-masonry, not-so-subtly referencing the southern border wall. Let’s hope Salka gets some sense knocked into him. #VargasSalka— Arturo Gomez (@artgmz) April 13, 2018
Many cheered the moment he went down.
A beautiful distillation of my feelings on bigotry on an individual level: ‘You can say/believe whatever it is you want; I wouldn’t dream of stopping you. Similarly, you probably can’t stop these hands.’— David Bless Warner (@ByBless45) April 13, 2018
Where upon Salka proclaimed victory and said his opponent would pay for his medical bills...— Paying Attention (@PayAttention2D) April 14, 2018
Memes. Always memes.