On Saturday night, Iranian-American lightweight fighter Beneil Dariush secured the biggest victory of his professional career by defeating fellow lightweight contender Tony Ferguson in a non-title fight that co-headlined UFC 262.
Dariush was named the victor in a unanimous decision from the judges, who all scored the fight 30-27.
During his post-fight interview in the octagon with UFC commentator Joe Rogan, Dariush told the crowd at Houston’s Toyota Center that he was dedicating his win to the “millions” of victims of Marxist ideology around the world.
First, however, he expressed his gratitude to Jesus Christ.
“First things first, I want to thank my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, that’s number one,” said the Iranian-born fighter, who is a devout Christian. Just moments prior, as the announcer named him the winner, his eyes had immediately lifted upward, indicating praise was, indeed, his first reaction.
“Number two,” he continued, “I want to dedicate this fight to all the people who’ve been hurt by Marxist ideologies. There are millions of you.”
“It’s just a fight, I know it’s not much, but I want you to know that I love you,” he continued. “And I understand the pain. I don’t completely understand, but I love you, and I understand your pain.”
He followed up this sobering dedication by jokingly calling out Tesla CEO Elon Musk.
“Joe, I want to call out your buddy, Elon. Elon Musk! Where is my wife’s car, bro? I’ve been waiting six months,” Dariush said, as Rogan laughed. “I’m having a baby. I need a big car. I need — I’ve got to protect my daughter. Let’s go, Elon, get me my car.”
He explained in a post-fight news conference that he had ordered a Tesla in December and was still waiting. Musk later replied on Twitter that it was coming soon and apologized for the delay, according to MMA Mania.
However, over in the Twitterverse, viewers seemed to think it was totally bizarre that Dariush slammed both Karl Marx, the forefather of communism, and Musk in the same post-fight interview.
— meagan (@meaggypants) May 16, 2021
Beneil Dariush dedicates the win to all those “affected by Marxist ideologies.”
He also calls out @elonmusk because he says his wife has been waiting for her car for six months.
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) May 16, 2021
Beneil Dariush putting Karl Marx and Elon Musk on notice in the same interview.
— Nicky (@AyyyNickaaay) May 16, 2021
Dariush calling out Elon Musk and Marxism on UFC Pay Per View. Damn bro, Karl Marx failed to consider this happening.
— Joe Farley (@JoeBFarley) May 16, 2021
Dariush went from, “Damn, great performance.”
To, “Alright he’s a Jesus guy.”
To dedicating that performance to everyone harmed by, “The teachings of Marx”
Then, playfully calling out Elon Musk?
Ideologically, this has to be one of the worst post fight speeches. #UFC262
— Ya boy, Cat Pope (@NotCatPope) May 16, 2021
This reaction is honestly a pretty sad commentary on our time. Dariush was certainly not exaggerating when he said there were “millions” of victims of Marxist ideology — he was likely not just talking about clueless millennials who think that universal health care or the Green New Deal are legitimately good ideas, although we can certainly pity them as well.
The Iranian native and devout Christian fighter was probably talking about the millions upon millions of people who lived through horrific oppression during the 20th and 21st centuries, including the estimated 100 million people who have been killed by regimes governing with Marxist ideals.
Dariush wasn’t calling out some irrelevant 19th-century philosopher, he was calling out a literally godless ideology that, despite its history of inspiring some of the most profound statist oppression the world has ever seen, is now incredibly chic in wealthy, Western and apparently very poorly educated countries today.
It’s so chic that Twitter users actually thought it was funny he made these comments — yet surely, no one would think it odd if he dedicated his fight to the victims of Nazism, would they?
Marxism is not a hip, cool idea nor is it obscure and random to criticize. It is arguably just as — if not more — pervasive than it has ever been around the globe, and millions of people around the world, from China to Cuba to Venezuela and North Korea, are still suffering under its influences.
A quick perusal of his social media timeline reveals a man who is clearly driven by his faith. He understands the power that ideas can have and took the opportunity following the biggest win of his career to lift up the saving power of his Lord Jesus Christ and to reach out to those who have suffered under the tyranny of statists.
We need much, much more of this kind of boldness. The fight against Marxism is one that begins with the recognition of Christ as Lord and of mankind’s likeness in the image of God. There is a reason that Marxist governments like the Soviet Union and Chinese Communist Party have so antagonized Christianity, as its morals completely undermine the materialistic state worship that is essential to justify communist rule.
It was a truly bold move to call out the Marxist agenda in such plain terms, and we can never hope to prevent its toxic influence within our own culture if we are not also willing to be so bold.
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