Muhammad Ali’s Family Reject Trump’s Offer of Pardon

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“Fight Tyranny sign with Trump's face on it in the basket of a bicycle” by Samantha Sophia on Unsplash

Donald J. Trump offered to pardon Heavyweight Boxing Champion Muhammad Ali. The offer came when Trump was asked who are some of the other people on his list to pardon.

Trump, sensing he could score points with sports fans and BlackLivesMatters proponents, rattled off the name of Muhammad Ali.

After all the Champ was stripped of his heavyweight crown after he was convicted of draft evasion on June 20, 1967, one year before Trump avoided the draft due to a medical diagnosis of bone spurs in both feet.

According to the New York Times in a piece published on August 1, 2016:

“Back in 1968, at the age of 22, Donald J. Trump seemed the picture of health.

He stood 6 feet 2 inches with an athletic build; had played football, tennis and squash; and was taking up golf. His medical history was unblemished, aside from a routine appendectomy when he was 10.”

Trump received a 1–Y deferment which allowed him to avoid service in Vietnam, the same war that had caused Ali to refuse induction into the armed services. Ali said at the time: “I ain’t got no quarrel with those Vietcong.”

Ali’s family attorney quickly rejected Trump’s offer informing him that Ali did not need a pardon.

Apparently, no one had informed Trump that the United States Supreme Court overturned Ali’s conviction on June 28, 1971.

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Harvey is Living Now Book Awards 2020 Bronze Medalist for his memoir Freaknik Lawyer: A Memoir on the Craft of Resistance. Available at haroldmichaelharvey.com

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