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Muhammad Ali alias Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr., an American Professional Boxer - Essay Example

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The reporter describes Muhammad Ali alias Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr. as an American professional boxer and is considered one of the greatest heavyweight champions ever. His wins in the ring are remarkable and so are his victories in the 20th-century American society which was segmented along racial, religious and economic lines…
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Muhammad Ali alias Cassius Marcellus Clay Jr., an American Professional Boxer
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Download file to see previous pages Being an African American, he openly spoke against racism. By this time, he was attracted to Islamism and he embraced Islamism and declared his affiliation with the Nation of Islam by changing his name to Muhammad Ali. In 1964, Ali appeared in the US armed force qualifying test but could not qualify because of his poor writing and spelling skills. However, there was a change in selection criteria in 1966 when the Vietnam War was going on. The army reconsidered Ali and found him eligible under the changed selection criteria (Owens 23).
However, Ali declared publicly that “I got nothing against the Vietcong” and refused to serve in the army. Rejecting the induction into the armed forces, Ali said, “no Vietcong ever called me nigger” (Friedman, par. 5). These two events; his joining the Nation of Islam and refusing induction into the armed forces proved costly for him. Ali was stripped of his title by the WBA and states refused to host his fights. Ali forwarded an application for classification as a conscientious objector but was turned down by the local draft board. It was followed by an administrative appeal by Ali and the State Appeal Board classified him eligible for military service. The file was then forwarded to the Department of Justice for the recommendation. It was followed by an inquiry by the FBI and hearing by a hearing officer appointed by the Department of Justice. Based on the hearing and FBI report, the hearing officer reported that the claim to be a conscientious objector on religious grounds be sustained. Despite this report, the Department of Justice directed the Appeal Board to reject Ali’s claim. Thus, the claim was denied without a statement of reasons. As Ali refused to obey, he was convicted for willful refusal to submit to induction, and the judgment was affirmed by the Court of Appeals of the Fifth Circuit (Friedman, par. 7).
Admittedly, the conviction raised a considerable amount of controversy. Firstly, Muhammad Ali was into a sport which is often criticized for brutality. Therefore, Ali’s claim that he could not take part in war because of religious reasons did not appear appealing.  ...Download file to see next pages Read More
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