OPINION: Plans for Joseph Parker to motivate young Māori and Pacific boys along with their fathers in Whanganui, were a fantastic opportunity. It has now been ruined by a vocal minority not wanting their children to miss out.
The Kiwi heavyweight arrived home in recent days after losing a major fight to British boxer Dillian Whyte in London.
Parker on Monday became aware he was due to speak to both Māori and Pacific students and their fathers during a closed event at Whanganui High School in two weeks' time.
You may think: what a fantastic chance for young people overrepresented in some of our worst statistics (local iwi's description, not mine) to hear from a role model from a Pacific background, who's taking on the world himself.
But as with anything these days, not everyone was happy, many arguing it's unfair to young girls and European and Asian boys who wanted to hear him speak. They had FOMO (Fear of Missing Out), and as you would predict, the school caved. Now everyone's invited.
What those people should realise is Parker's set to spend a number of the days in the region, being part of tourism and sporting activities which include visiting a local boxing gym. The itinerary hasn't been fully confirmed, and it's highly unlikely this would have been his only chance to meet children.
Speaking with local iwi leader Gerrad Albert on Tuesday, it became clear why this was important.
"Our boys, they need targeted and specific programmes that cater for their viewpoint, and their needs," he told me. He goes on to say many are on the top end of many negative statistics like imprisonment rates, arrest and family violence.
Despite that fact, a targeted, specific event, designed to change a group of young peoples' lives will no longer happen. Parker and his team told me on Tuesday he'd like to speak to everyone.
But let's be honest, if those opposed to the event hadn't created such a fuss, I'm sure he would have happily spoken to this group.
Instead his visit has been turned into a racial stoush, and the children who often miss out, will miss out with a watered-down message to a massive crowd.
Mitch McCann is a reporter for Newshub.