The recent announcement by Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump against Muslims entering the United States has caused one notable celebrity to speak out. Boxing legend and humanitarian Muhammad Ali has spoken out against Trump’s bigoted rhetoric.
Ali became perhaps the most famous Muslim in America when he changed his name from Cassius Clay to Muhammad Ali in 1964. The name change shocked America as Ali stated he had joined the Nation of Islam under the leadership of the Hon. Elijah Muhammad. Since his name change, Ali has been outspoken on civil rights for Black Americans and the peace that Islam has brought to his life.
However, Trump’s statement that “Muslims should be barred from coming to the United States” has caused Ali to speak out once more in his old age. The former boxing legend stated, ‘I am a Muslim and there is nothing Islamic about killing innocent people in Paris, San Bernardino, or anywhere else in the world. True Muslims know that the ruthless violence of so-called Islamic jihadists goes against the very tenets of our religion. We as Muslims have to stand up to those who use Islam to advance their own personal agenda. They have alienated many from learning about Islam. True Muslims know or should know that it goes against our religion to try and force Islam on anybody. ‘Speaking as someone who has never been accused of political correctness, I believe that our political leaders should use their position to bring understanding about the religion of Islam and clarify that these misguided murderers have perverted people’s views on what Islam really is.”
Trump has not backtracked on his statements against Muslims and, in fact, has stated that ‘I’m doing good for the Muslims … many of my Islamic friends have said his idea to ban Muslims is ‘brilliant.” Trump went on to state that “I am the least racist person you have ever met.”