President Trump shocked some of his fans and haters alike when he announced that he’s considering another pardon. This time he went through his thought process and happily announced that he will consider the posthumous pardon for one of the most famous athletes in the entire world. That would be none other than the legendary Muhammad Ali, one of the greatest boxers and entertainers in our lifetime. Ali’s wrongdoing was not joining the military when called upon, but perhaps that was a good thing for him. He may have dodged the draft for Vietnam and he was looked at as an anti-American. He wasn’t liked very much at the time, but he used his athletic prowess and entertaining personality to win his way back into the American hearts for many.
Trump admitted that Ali wasn’t popular. People disliked Ali for quite a while, but times changed and differences seemed to be mended. Trump is now considering providing Ali with a posthumous pardon, even though it’s no longer necessary, but perhaps that is Trump offering his respects to one of the greatest sports legends that boxing has ever witnessed.
Daily Mail stated:
“Donald Trump said Friday that he’s considering a posthumous pardon for boxing legend Muhammad Ali.
He didn’t specify what the pardon would erase, but Ali’s only high-profile criminal conviction, for dodging the Vietnam War draft, was overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1971.
‘He was not very popular then,’ the president told reporters as he left the White House for the G7 summit in Canada, but ‘he’s very popular now.’
‘I’m thinking about Muhammad Ali. I’m thinking about that very seriously. And some others,’ he said.
Trump said the list of presidential clemency recommendations on his desk does not include O.J. Simpson, another high profile athlete who is far more politically radioactive.
Ali initially registered for Selective Service in 1962 and became eligible to be drafted in 1966, after a change in the U.S. Army’s intelligence standards meant his low score from a 1964 writing and spelling test was marginally acceptable.
‘I said I was the greatest, not the smartest!’ he said at the time.
But when the Army notified him that he could actually be concsripted into armed service, Ali declared that he would refuse the call.
‘War is against the teachings of the Qur’an,’ he said. ‘I’m not trying to dodge the draft. We are not supposed to take part in no wars unless declared by Allah or The Messenger. We don’t take part in Christian wars or wars of any unbelievers.’
Ali, born Cassius Clay, had only months earlier announced his conversion to Islam, right after defeating Sonny Liston for the unified WBA and WBC titles.
‘I ain’t got no quarrel with them Viet Cong,’ he said. ‘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?’
Ali was drafted in 1967 over his protests, but refused to step forward at a Texas induction center when his name was called.”
Did Ali have a good point? He had no problems with the Viet Cong, so why would he want to place on a uniform and fight someone he doesn’t know in another country? When the draft was going on, there was a lot of upset people who were drafted. Some of them simply weren’t cut out for the military and it may have had a negative effect on the outcome. The military is best suited for people who desire and wish to be in that situation. The military takes a special kind of person who has the mental and physical strength and resilience to be placed in the most harrowing of situations.
What would you do if you were Trump? Would you pardon Ali? Since times have changed and there is no longer a draft, then is a pardon for that particular incident acceptable?
Write your answers below.
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