“I ain’t got no quarrel with them Viet Cong.” Muhammad Ali
I have never liked boxing, and have always believed and still do, that it should be outlawed. Having men or women beat on each other, while others watch and bet money seems barbaric, which is where the sport has its origin. The raw violence of boxing makes me shudder.
Nonetheless, when Muhammad Ali busted on the scene, his handsome face, his braggadocious manner, his poetic rhymes, his whole manner said he was a cut above the rest and I, like so many others, succumbed to his charisma and strong belief in himself. He was not just a boxer and a Muslim, he was a metaphysician. He understood keenly the law of attraction, how thinking and believing something are keys to making things happen.
Mostly what I admired about Ali was his sense of integrity, his willingness to put his life on the line, stymie his boxing career for his greater belief. When on April 28, 1967, in Huston, Ali decided to be a conscientious objector, and refused to be drafted into the U.S. army, his bold stance made many African Americans and other non-blacks proud. Ali dared to voice what many had been feeling and thinking, but were afraid to act upon. He spoke a truth America did not want to hear, not from a black man, not then, and not even now.
“Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go 10,000
miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on brown
people in Vietnam while so-called Negro people in Louisville
are treated like dogs and denied simple human rights?”
Many remember Muhammad Ali as a great fighter, which he was, but I think Ali would like to be remembered as a great humanitarian, a man of principles. Ali kept faith with his heart even when it meant he was stripped of his heavy-weight title, and was banned from boxing for three years.
Muhammad Ali scored a gold medal at the 1960 Olympic Games in Rome.
Muhammad Ali is the only fighter to be heavyweight champion three times.
Muhammad Ali danced like a buttlerfly in the ring and had the spirit and style of many lions.
May he continue to soar and soar and find rest among the ancestors.