The Truth about Muhammad Ali

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Published on: June 13, 2016

Thousands gathered in the streets of Louisville, Kentucky, last week to pay their final respects to Muhammad Ali. Bill Clinton, Billy Crystal, Will Smith and others attended Ali’s memorial and canonized him as a great “civil-rights icon.”

The media have been lying about Ali’s record for the past 50 years. Their efforts to rewrite history and falsify the man’s past are disgraceful.

Born Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. in Louisville, Kentucky, Muhammad Ali was raised in a middle-class, two-parent family. But there was something awfully wrong that made him deny his racially mixed heritage, betray his close friend Malcolm X, turn his back on his country and embrace a radical, anti-white, anti-Christian belief.

Hated his white side

As I write about in my book, “The Antidote: Healing America from the Poison of Hate, Blame, and Victimhood,” Malcolm X made one convert whose fame would outshine his own. Under Malcolm’s influence, Muhammad Ali made a great show of his blackness, but to prove it, Ali disowned his white great-grandparents. “If slaveholder Clay’s blood came into our veins along with the name,” he said, “it came by rape and defilement.”

Ali was just echoing the Nation of Islam, or NOI, boilerplate. Ali’s mother, Odessa Clay, was born a Grady. Her grandfather was an open-minded Irishman who married her grandmother Dinah after the Civil War. There’s no evidence anyone was raped. Odessa’s other grandfather, Tom Moorehead, had a white father and a black mother. He had fought on the Union side in the Civil War.

Betrayed Malcolm X

Muhammad Ali was a confused young man. There was a price he had to pay to join the NOI, and that was to betray Malcolm X when the NOI turned against him.

This is a story that no one tells during Black History Month. That betrayal “hurt Malcolm more than any other person turning away from him that I know of,” Betty Shabazz, Malcolm’s wife, told Ali’s biographer, Tom Hauser. The reason was that Malcolm alone among the NOI crew had backed Ali before he became a champ.

When the death threats against her husband grew serious, Shabazz begged Ali to call off the dogs. “You see what you’re doing to my husband, don’t you?” she asked him. Ali raised his hands in the air and said, “I’m not doing anything to him.”

During his 10 years with the NOI, Ali did whatever his masters told him to do.

Turned his back on America

Ali claimed in his autobiography that, upon his return from the Rome Olympics, he threw his gold medal into the Ohio River after he and a friend were refused service at a “whites-only” restaurant and fought with a white gang.

And as thousands of young American soldiers were fighting against the Communists in Vietnam, Ali hid behind his religion and refused to serve in the U.S. Army. He angered many Americans after claiming, “I ain’t got no quarrel with those Vietcong.”

Insecure about his ‘blackness’

Ali’s racially mixed family tree made him insecure about his “blackness,” so he humiliated boxing legend Joe Frazier, and reveled in his own imaginary blackness at Frazier’s expense. Young whites, who embraced Ali after he evaded the draft, somehow painted Ali as the authentic black champion, this despite the fact that Ali had two white great-grandparents. With Ali’s encouragement, the media painted Frazier as an Uncle Tom, a white man’s black man. These taunts stung Frazier worse than all the punches he ever took.

“[Ali] set out to cut me down, and hurt me,” Frazier wrote in his autobiography, “the only way he knew how – with his lying, jiving mouth.” Frazier knew he’d led a “blacker” life than Ali. The 12th child of a one-armed sharecropper, he had darker skin, proud Gullah roots, a black manager and trainer and an integrated management team. “I grew up like a black man – he didn’t,” Frazier told Sports Illustrated. “I cooked the liquor. I cut the wood. I worked the farm. I lived in the ghetto.” Frazier could never understand why the media had turned on him. “He had a white man in the corner and those rich plantation people fund him,” Frazier wrote of Ali. “A white lawyer kept him out of jail. And he’s going to Uncle Tom me?”

Celebrity praise doesn’t change the truth about Ali’s past. Because Ali protested against the Vietnam War and embraced Islam, the liberal media see him as a hero. They see themselves as “change agents” at the forefront of a cultural revolution. It’s apparent in every subversive idea they promote.

Ali was one of the first high-profile Americans to announce he was a Muslim, and he changed his name in 1964. Rather than showing Islam for the violent and oppressive political system that it is, media coverage of Ali’s funeral deceitfully portrayed it as a “religion of peace.”

Muhammad Ali’s true story needs to be told, and those who’ve spent the last 50 years painting a false image of the man to promote their own twisted worldview need to be exposed.

On Saturday, June 18, Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson’s nonprofit organization, BOND, is hosting its “Seventh Annual Conference on Fatherhood and Men” in Los Angeles. For more information and to RSVP, click here.

Order Rev. Jesse Lee Peterson’s book, “The Antidote: Healing America from the Poison of Hate, Blame, and Victimhood.”

Article posted with permission from Jesse Lee Peterson.

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