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Greg Siskind on Immigration Law and Policy

IMMIGRANT OF THE DAY: MAURICE ASHLEY - CHESS GRANDMASTER

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Though I haven't thought about Bobby Fisher in some time, I was still very surprised to hear about his death on this morning's news. I was a kid in the 70s and remembered Fisher as the young chessmaster who defeated Soviet icon Boris Spassky in the "Match of the Century" at the championship in Iceland. And then Fisher, known for his turbulent personality, spent much of the next thirty-five years making headlines for controversial political positions and strange personal behavior.



Today's chess champions don't seem to have Fisher's flair for making the news. The exception seems to be Gary Kasparov who has become a political thorn in the side of Russian leader Boris Putin.



One chessmaster that stands out from the crowd and is trying to be a role model for today's youth is Jamaican immigrant Maurice Ashley, the first black International Grand Master of Chess. Ashley travels the country speaking to young people to promote chess and recently returned to his native Jamaica where he was the first Grand Master ever to play a tournament in that country. Ashley cites greats like Tiger Woods, Arthur Ashe and Jackie Robinson as his inspiration. For young African-Americans who are chess enthusiasts, Ashley is presumably their Jackie Robinson.

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  1. Encyclopedia Spelltanica's Avatar
    It's spelled _Fischer_. Not some dude with bait and tackle.

    Maurice Ashley was a GM before Tiger started winning majors. Woods should take inspiration from him. Ashley is cool and he does a lot of amazing things for kids, but he wasn't spit on etc etc like Jackie Robinson. No disrespect to Ashley's accomplishments (being the the first Jamaican GM is a big deal), but it's not even the same category.
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