Black First Land First pays tribute to Mohammed Ali

Black First Land First pays tribute to Mohammed Ali

Mohammed Ali, the greatest heavyweight black power champion in boxing history, has just died at the age of 74. He was essentially a violent man with political education  but appropriated by the white establishment and projected as a gentle icon. He used boxing as a platform to expose the contradictions between racism and slavery, between war and revolution and stayed true to his revolutionary conviction that it is right to rebel against the anti black system. As a tribute to his legacy BLF has put together some of his most memorable quotes that serves to counter the white supremacist logic that he was at war with.

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On defeat

“Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even.”

“Inside of a ring or out, ain’t nothing wrong with going down. It’s staying down that’s wrong.”

“I never thought of losing, but now that it’s happened, the only thing is to do it right. That’s my obligation to all the people who believe in me. We all have to take defeats in life. ”

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On life orientation

“I’m a fighter. I believe in the eye-for-an-eye business. I’m no cheek turner. I got no respect for a man who won’t hit back. You kill my dog, you better hide your cat.”

“You lose nothing when fighting for a cause … In my mind the losers are those who don’t have a cause they care about.”

“The man who views the world at 50 the same as he did at 20 has wasted 30 years of his life.”

“I am America. I am the part you won’t recognize. But get used to me. Black, confident, cocky; my name, not yours; my religion, not yours; my goals, my own; get used to me.”

“It isn’t the mountains ahead to climb that wear you out; it’s the pebble in your shoe.”

“I have been so great in boxing they had to create an image like Rocky, a white image on the screen, to counteract my image in the ring. America has to have its white images, no matter where it gets them. Jesus, Wonder Woman, Tarzan and Rocky. ”

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On revolutionary conviction

“Why should they ask me to put on a uniform and go 10,000 miles from home and drop bombs and bullets on Brown people in Vietnam while so-called Negro people in Louisville are treated like dogs and denied simple human rights? No I’m not going 10,000 miles from home to help murder and burn another poor nation simply to continue the domination of white slave masters of the darker people the world over. This is the day when such evils must come to an end. I have been warned that to take such a stand would cost me millions of dollars. But I have said it once and I will say it again. The real enemy of my people is here. I will not disgrace my religion, my people or myself by becoming a tool to enslave those who are fighting for their own justice, freedom and equality. If I thought the war was going to bring freedom and equality to 22 million of my people they wouldn’t have to draft me, I’d join tomorrow. I have nothing to lose by standing up for my beliefs. So I’ll go to jail, so what? We’ve been in jail for 400 years.”

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On the making of a champion

“Champions aren’t made in gyms. Champions are made from something they have deep inside them-a desire, a dream, a vision. They have to have the skill, and the will. But the will must be stronger than the skill.” 

“The man with no imagination has no wings.”

“The fight is won or lost far away from the witnesses, behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road; long before I dance under those lights.”

“He who is not courageous enough to take risks will accomplish nothing in life”

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Long live the spirit of Mohammed Ali!

4 June  2016

Contact Details

Black First Land First Mail: blackfirstlandfirst@gmail.com

Zanele Lwana
(National Spokesperson)
Cell: +27 79 486 9087
Mail: zanelelwana@gmail.com

Lindsay Maasdorp
(National Spokesperson)
Cell: +27 79 915 2957
Mail: lgmaasdorp@hotmail.com

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