Unapologetically Black.  That is Ali.  I say is because was will never be.  His body is gone but his spirit has entered the Sasha; joined with his brother and mentor el-Hajj Malik el-Shabazz.

‘One worthy of praise,’ was a feather ruffler, a birdcage shaker and a champion who had the world at his feet as he “shook up the world.”  And shake the world up he did.

Destined to be the greatest.  He said it; he did it.  No one said he could beat Liston.  Twice he did.  George Foreman was a beast!  “Bumaye” he did.  Heavyweight champion.  Three times he did.  His humbling defeats were even great.  He was the voice of a people in an era that had many, but his poetics spoke paramount.  His only agenda was freedom…

But what made Ali great?  The people.  The power of the people.  “I wish people would love everybody else the way they love me.  It would be a better world,” he stated so truly.

He fought the system.  And won.  Won the heart of the world.  “I must be the greastest,” wasn’t a proclamation to who he was, it was a verbal step for him to continue; to carry on, a murmur to himself spoken aloud for us to hear.  But more for us to compute and say to ourselves and believe that, “I must be the greatest!”  He, you and I.

Ali’s relationship with Malcolm X.

Ali was Black.  Blue Black.  Pitch-dark Black.  The darker he got the more love he received.  Black meaning oppressed, burdened, browbeaten, afflicted but never defeated.  Black meaning strong, all-encompassed, survivor, champion, alpha and omega.

Parkinson’s could never take away his voice for it will speak in the hearts of millions long into the Zamani where his spirit will be embraced as a true man of his time.

“I’m a bad man!”  Yes you are Ali, yes you are…

{Insert Ozzie Davis’ eulogy to Malcolm here}

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