This past Friday, the world paid homage to the late, great former heavyweight champion of the world, Muhammad Ali.
Although he didn’t speak at Ali’s memorial service, the Honorable Minister Louis Farrakhan talked about what Muhammad meant to him and the Nation of Islam in Chicago.
Min. Farrakhan explained the reason he loves Muhammad so much: “Brother Malcolm was exiting The Nation, all of us in The Nation were in pain because Malcolm X was our hero.
“He beat the enemies of his teacher with truth and he made us soldiers. But when Malcolm defected, there was a gaping hole in The Nation of Islam and in walked Cassius Marcellus Clay.
“The Ali that stirred you, was the Ali made by Elijah [Muhammad]. The Ali that you fell in love with — ‘float like a butterfly, sting like a bee’ — that was the man that Elijah [Muhammad] made.
“When Ali told the government ‘I’m not going and I’m not fighting for you — you[re] my enemy,’ that was the honorable man Elijah made,” Farrakhan said.
Minister Farrakhan highlighted the Supreme Court case, Clay v. United States, in which the High Court ruled in favor of Muhammad Ali, agreeing that he “was a conscientious objector, so none of you have to go to war today.”
NewsOne Now panelist Cleo Manago explained many Americans do not know their history and many don’t remember Elijah Muhammad. “It’s important to contextualize him in terms of his powerful connection to our history and all those people that he mentioned, including Muhammad Ali,” he said.
Manago then expressed his gratitude for Martin and NewsOne Now for airing the clip of Min. Farrakhan, saying other media outlets would not have done the same.
Panelist Tiffany D. Loftin said she was glad Min. Farrakhan addressed the relationship between Ali and Malcolm X.
“It is an important part of our history that we want to acknowledge. How all of our folks come together, how all our folks are fighting for the same rights, and for the same people and how inherently we need to kind of take up some of those values even today,” she said.
Watch Roland Martin and the NewsOne Now panel discuss Min. Louis Farrakhan’s remarks about Muhammad Ali in the video clip above.
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