Former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson believes America has become more racist since Barack Obama was elected president, and that groups like the Tea Party have surfaced through that racism. Tyson's interview by CNN's Piers Morgan aired on Thursday night's Piers Morgan Tonight.
Tyson professed that "there's a great possibility" that America has become more racist since Obama's election, and when asked to clarify he affirmed "a hundred percent, yes."
"Because that's how these groups surface, these red – Tea Party and everything," Tyson added.
Tyson observed that "it's new stuff" that a black man has "the image of the strongest man on the planet." He seemed to infer that is "pretty tough to take in" for his opponents. "And that must be pretty tough to take in when you – I don't know," he told Morgan.
However, when asked how he well thought President Obama was performing, Tyson answered "I don't know."
A transcript of the segment, which aired on March 29 on Piers Morgan Tonight at 9:33 p.m. EDT, is as follows:
PIERS MORGAN: Did you think America, Mike, has become more or less racist since Barack Obama, an African-American, became president?
MIKE TYSON, former undisputed heavyweight champion: There's a great possibility, yes.
MORGAN: That it's become worse?
TYSON: A hundred percent, yes. Because that's how these groups surface, these red – Tea Party and everything. Listen, it's new stuff, being a black man, having the image of the strongest man on the planet, the biggest man in the world, from a political point – standpoint – that's a political standpoint, you can send the strongest army in the world and in the country and stuff. And that must be pretty tough to take in when you – I don't know. It's just the way this country is. I just believe this is just the best country in the world. We just have problems we have to iron out, but –
MORGAN: How do you think Barack Obama's doing as president?
TYSON: I don't know. I live in a Barack Obama household. From – from ethnicity, I think that's beautiful seeing a black president, for my children to see a black president. But I'm just – regardless if he's president or not, I have to be the bread winner of my family. If he's the president or if he's not a president, I'm going to be the one paying the bills and working. So it really doesn't matter.