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11-08-2011, 12:26 PM
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Originally Posted by CavemanLawyer View Post
The real peoples champion. Worked hard his whole life, farm work, Coca Cola plant, did all the dirty jobs and rose up to the top. Not like the other guy, with the meetings with the KKK, speeches of separatism, "Integration is wrong.", I believe was his big phrase, we hate the white man and the white man hates us, constantly calling his opponents Uncle Toms and other racial abuses and other over the top trash talk...

I still don't understand to this day how Ali got such a pass on the crazy outlandish straight racists and vile things he said and did back in the day. Oh cause he was funny and good....right. Boxing fans have always viewed Ali as a really polarizing figure, but the mainstream still views him as some gee shucks its Ali lets kiss his feet he's god... Look up to Ali? Joe Frazier...Now that was a man to look to.
Not an argument with any of the above... merely an opinion and observation from someone who lived through it; Ali along with his great talent, charming personality and good looks was not afraid to go against the mainstream and say what was on his mind... He was young and brash and a perfect look up to guy for the counter-culture who was against the older generation and more importantly the Vietnam War -- 'The Times They Are a-Changing' -- To them he was their hero and he was able to sell them whatever he wanted to... He painted Frazier as the tool of the Right Wing and therefore the enemy of Ali's people. I don't believe Joe wanted to be the poster-boy for anything and just waned to work at his trade and be the best a it and be respected ... Ali tried to take that respect way from him as I see it. Ali made it political as well as the battle in the ring.

I believe both men could have been looked up to for their boxing skills and all the wrestling stuff that Ali used to promote himself and accelerate his climb was unneeded by the boxing fans... Joe rose through the ranks by fighting who was above him in a calculated manner and did what he had to do in the ring and didn't feel the need to 'promote' the fights with his mouth and spent his time training and honing his skills and learning how to beat his opponent... He was blue collar and let others live their lives as they saw fit without preaching to them; he was a prize fighter. Ali felt the need to tear down his opponent outside the ring and was no above making them seem what they were not to advance himself and promote the fight itself.

Joe was by no means an Uncle Tom and only became a hero of the older generation and the 'Right' largely due to his being put in that position by Ali... Ali needed his Satan and he created him.

Both were among the greatest heavyweights of all time and were of the same generation... and that should have been enough to give us maybe he greatest boxing match-up of all time... IMO there was no need for either to tear down the other.

I respected Ali's great talent then and feel for his fight with Parkinson's now... I only wish he hadn't made their great battles into carnival side shows with professional wrestling hype. I suppose they will forever be linked Ali-Frazier... You had to be on one side or the other... polar opposites linked for Eternity.

Goodbye, Smokin' Joe... You will forever be missed.

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