Pistol Packing Promoter
By Robert Ecksel on August 25, 2022
Don King came to Mar-a-Lago at the invitation of Donald Trump. (Photo: Robert Ecksel)
The relationship between Donald Trump and Don King is a natural. The bombast, doubletalk, avarice and ostentation united the president-elect and boxing promoter in ways above and beyond a shared desire to rule the world. The two men were longtime friends and Florida residents. They also had some weird hair thing going.
Don King doesn’t promote many fights these days. When Don King Promotions was riding high in the 1960s and early ‘70s, it was, trappings aside, essentially a Mom and Pop outfit disguised as a corporation. In this iteration, Don King was Pop, his feckless stepson Carl was Mom, and the less said about that family dynamic the better.
But Don King keeps the best company.
Things don’t look good for former President Trump these days. The FBI recently searched his home, or compound or private club, and hauled away boxes and boxes of really cool stuff. Personally, I don’t know what all the fuss is about. He supposedly took hundreds of highly classified documents and left them lying around Mar-a-Lago. So what? I spent hours studying this and have reached some conclusions. Number one, big deal. Number two, can you name one person who might possibly be more responsible when it comes to nuclear secrets than Donald Trump? Gandhi? Mother Theresa? Anthony Fauci? Elon Musk? Just as I thought: It’s not even close, although security at Mar-a-Lago appears lacking.
According to ABC News, Trump's former White House press secretary Stephanie Grisham said, “At Mar-a-Lago, the priority is the members, not security. Period. There would be times when a member would bring a guest where the background check was shady and we would get these calls, and it was always, ‘Let them in, let them in.’
“The vetting process was definitely not what it should have been.”
In 2016, King came to Mar-a-Lago at the invitation of Donald Trump, who had just been elected 45th president of the United States. It was a festive moment for those inclined to be festive, before the hard work of governing began, and among those feeling festive was Don King. He stepped from his limo wearing a bespoke jean jacket festooned with patriotic symbols. A vault’s worth jewelry dangled from his neck. His booming voice could be heard a mile away, delivering a combination of street wisdom, gobbledygook, and recycled hot air that caused the flags in his hands to flutter.
Grisham recalled Don King’s visit and thought it memorable. It wasn’t because he was black, rare though that was thereabouts, but because he had a gun. At the time she asked herself, “Who the hell shows up to Mar-a-Lago to see the president of the United States with a gun?”
The answer is Don King.
Grisham didn’t know the make, model, or caliber, but conspiracists claim it was a Sam Garrett Special.
Secret Service stopped the boxing promoter. Their motto is “Worthy of Trust and Confidence.” Their job is to protect the president, at any cost, even at risk to their own lives. So the agents told the promoter, “No, you can’t come in.”
Don King hates the word “no” almost as much as Donald Trump. The president-elect was consulted. Without deliberation, he gave the thumbs down.
“Let him in,” Trump said, “I don't care.”
Or as Don King might have said, “Let my people in.”