Wednesday, August 20, 2008


Here's a Olympic story that will cause midget Mickey Kaus to soil his synthetic sweatsuit:

BEIJING --The American flag landed on the scorer’s table, launched by a family member with exceptional aim. Henry Cejudo grabbed it from his coach and draped it around his body. He stood there for the longest time, fighting back tears, the son of illegal immigrants wrapped in the Stars and Stripes.

After Cejudo had defeated Tomohiro Matsunaga of Japan to win the 121-pound freestyle wrestling final on Tuesday, and after his family members had celebrated so loudly for so long that security threatened to kick them out, officials hung a gold medal around his neck. He said he might never remove it.

"I might just sleep with this," Cejudo said. "It changed my life already."

Fitting, because his is a story about change -- for himself, for his family and maybe now for the USA Wrestling program, which trained the 21-year-old Cejudo to become the youngest gold medalist in United States wrestling history.

The gold medal, and his path to it, changed so many lives along the way.

Like his mother's life. Nelly Rico, who came to the United States from Mexico as an illegal immigrant, raised seven children by herself and left Los Angeles with them in the middle of the night to escape the career criminal who was the father Cejudo never really knew.

His right eye bruised and darkened, Cejudo talked of all the hours his mother had worked over the years, as a janitor and a construction worker, anything to put food on the table or to heat the house. He talked about all the times they moved, from Los Angeles to New Mexico to Phoenix to Colorado Springs, each time in search of a better life.

"I wish I could just give her the medal right now," Cejudo said.

Motherhood, hard honest work and the American flag -- everything that Kaus and VDare crowd hate. If only there was some way we could deport shiftless and non-contributing citizens -- like Kaus -- to Mexico in exchange for productive members of society. But I doubt Mexico would go for it.

Congratulations Henry!

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