Ali and Trump Similiar?
Both Men Used Their Hands and Mouths
The Greatest is a Muslim?
Let’s dispense with the first myth.
Ali was not the greatest boxer. He loudly proclaimed over and over he was and millions of people not knowledgeable about boxing think so just like millions think Trump’s bragging and yelling is also attractive. Ali was a wonderful boxer, but Joe Louis is the greatest. Louis held the title of Heavyweight Champion longer than any other boxer and defended it more times successfully than any other boxer (25 title defenses a record matched by no other heavyweight).
Louis was ranked “Number One Greatest Puncher of All Time” by Ring Magazine in 2005 and ranked the “Number One Heavyweight of All Time” by the International Boxing Research Organization, whose members know much more about the sport than you or I.
It’s been said Ali backed up his boasts, fight predictions made to raise interest. Not always. He had too many losses on his record to be the greatest, to Joe Frazier, Leon Spinks, Trevor Berbick, Larry Holmes, Ken Norton. Norton a mediocre fighter broke Ali’s jaw (along with blazing foot and hand speed Ali had a glass jaw). Some of these men Ali later defeated (Frazier).
Louis lost to only three, Max Schmeling who he later beat, Ezzard Charles and Rocky Marciano.
To say Ali could beat Louis is pointless. Both men lived in different time eras. Medicine, training methods, food, wasn’t as good in Louis’ day. People were smaller in Louis’ day. You have to go by the record of wins or losses.
Possibly the reason you think Ali was the greatest boxer is that he himself yelled it over and over and you accept it as fact much like you possibly do when Donald Trump promises to make America “Great” again. That assumes it’s not great now.
“The Greatest” and “I’ll Make America Great.”
It seems that if you yell something loud enough long enough people will believe it, a technique Joseph Goebbels would have understood fully.
In any event (the main event) here are 10 similarities between Ali and Trump.
1. Both men avoided military service like the plague. The irony here is Ali has been called a selfless hero and he was a Muslim who dodged the draft in a country in which we constantly extol our veterans today with slogans like “Support Our Troops,” “If You Value Your Freedom Thank a Vet,” “Freedom Isn’t Free,” and we wave flags and every Memorial Day or Veterans’ Day we celebrate sacrifice. Yet Ali is called a hero.
I don’t oppose opposition to the Vietnam War personally, but you can’t have it both ways, avoid service and be a hero when other men who served (and died) are also called heroes.
For his part Trump would never be caught dead serving. The recipient of numerous draft deferments, he’s not going to waste his time making a measly $300 a month.
2. Yelling and incessant talking as a psychological device to run from fear. Both men do it. The idea that when a man bellows in a roar at the top of his voice or keeps talking no matter what, never pausing to reflect, but who acts tough, is really afraid and trying to hide it. The louder you yell, the louder you brag, the more afraid you are.
3. Name calling. This is the lazy and childish person’s way of avoiding having to debate or to counter criticism. You simply call someone who opposes you a name and if it’s clever the public just might laugh. Trump called his opponents “Slow Jeb,” “Liar Ted,” “Crooked Hillary,” “Little Marco,” while Ali called Ernie Shavers “The Acorn,” George Chuvalo “The Washer Woman” and George Foreman “The Big Mummy.” Granted, boxing is a little different than politics, at the end of a contest, if things go well, your opponent falls down (in boxing). But name calling is not heroic behavior and again is motivated by fear and also teaches intolerance for the rights of others.
4. The false idea because you are Heavyweight Champion or even President you are a person of lasting world importance. The earth has been turning for millions of years. Perhaps for the moment you’re important (you think), but who today remembers Bob Fitzsimmons or Millard Fillmore?
5. Use of religion. I have no doubt Ali believed in the Muslim faith and I respect freedom of religion, though I think he used it to reinforce his attempt to become a conscientious objector to avoid the Vietnam War so he could continue with his million dollar boxing career. Trump said “I am Christian,” attempting to gain votes from the Bible-Reading Right Wing.
6. Use of a Race Card. Trump advances himself by playing on the hatred and fear of angry whites by building walls against Muslims and Mexicans. Ali, though supposedly a representative of all African Americans, had no trouble calling his rare white opponent a “White Hope,” even though the white opponent himself (Joe Bugner, Jerry Quarry) had given no evidence of racist prejudice. Ali did this in the self-appointed act of being a figurehead.
7. The curious false idea among the public that Ali gave boxing glamour and saved the sport. Boxing has always been here, for 150 years or more. It’s had its great champions and not great. If Ali attracted millions more non-boxing fans because of his theatrics, did it literally save the sport? From what? He also presided over a time when boxing became off-limits to more people. You have to pay cable TV fees to see fights now (pay-per-view) instead of free on your TV as in the 1950s.
The curious false idea Trump will “save the country” and millions of people, some of them intelligent, believe the system is broken, instead of caused by their own misjudgment and stupidity, that it doesn’t reflect their values.
8. Scapegoating. Ali called (or hinted) that both Joe Frazier and Joe Louis were “Uncle Toms,” again playing the race card to advance himself, unfairly denigrating Louis for example, when Louis lived at a time when an African American couldn’t even order a sandwich at a lunch counter. If Louis wasn’t as loud as Ali, he didn’t need to boast and brag as both Ali and Trump do. Louis lived in a more restricted world. Trump calls people he doesn’t like “losers,” as though one negative word could sum up the struggles of an entire life. Both men dismiss others without empathy.