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Former Chicago Cubs slugger Sammy Sosa responded in a new interview to people who have criticized his noticeably lighter skin tone since his retirement from baseball in 2007. The former right fielder tells Sports Illustrated, “Look at what I am today. This is my life, and I don’t take garbage from nobody.” These days, Sosa lives in the United Arab Emirates with his wife, Sonia Rodríguez, and their six children. There, the former athlete ignores the things trolls say online about his appearance. The drastic change in Sosa’s complexion first began making headlines when he attended the Latin Grammy Awards in Las Vegas in November 2009. A week later, he appeared on Univision’s Primer Impacto program to clarify that he did not have vitiligo, the skin condition that the late Michael Jackson said was the reason for his lighter skin.Sosa explained at the time, “It’s a bleaching cream that I apply before going to bed and whitens my skin some. It’s a cream that I have, that I use to soften [my skin], but has bleached me some. I’m not a racist. I live my life happily. … What happened was that I had been using the cream for a long time and that, combined with the bright TV lights, made my face look whiter than it really is. I don’t think I look like Michael Jackson.”

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