Ali vs. Rapinoe
Writing for Sports Illustrated, Grant Whal drew a comparison between current Mega Soccer Goddess Megan Rapinoe and Muhammed Ali, when he wrote:
Muhammad Ali is a singular figure in American life. But there are elements of a modern-day Ali in Rapinoe’s stance toward sports and social activism, to say nothing of her ability to turn the glare of publicity -- much of it controversial -- to her advantage.
Muhammed Ali was many things, but he was a man who many Americans learned to respect because he stood for ideals, backing them with actions that cost him dearly.
Until such time that Rapinoe can achieve such a distinction, she will remain simply a flash in the pan, capitalizing on her temporary fame and the popular ‘hate-Trump-theme’ which is tearing this nation apart.
We need to recognize that Ali was ahead of his time, as the nascent anti-war movement was just beginning to gain traction. Indeed his actions ran contrary to the American themes of the day. Rapinoe, on the other hand, has jumped on the bandwagon and seems to delight in the opportunity to demonstrate her disdain for Trump, as well as for America. Her rise to fame is in large part due to her matching the equal disdain shown for Trump, and for America, that is currently infecting the American media and the leftist crowd she identifies with.
Certainly, early in his career Ali was loud, brash, and obnoxious. In those ways, Mr. Whal’s comparison may be a fair one. Certainly Rapinoe is all that and more. I would add: hypocritical, ignorant, disrespectful, and incapable of discussion without the use of juvenile profanity, including F-bombs. This, of course is delightful to those who have created the pedestal she stands on.
Let’s recall that Cassius Clay (the future Muhammed Ali) drew the animus of much of the nation when he converted to Islam and took on the new name. A few years later the hatred for Ali was set, for many in stone, when he refused induction into the Army to serve during the Vietnam War. Ali elaborated on his position:
“My conscience won’t let me go shoot my brother, or some darker people, or some poor hungry people in the mud for big powerful America. And shoot them for what? They never called me nigger, they never lynched me, they didn’t put no dogs on me, they didn’t rob me of my nationality, rape and kill my mother and father… Shoot them for what? How can I shoot them poor people? Just take me to jail.”
In 1967, the 25-year-old Ali, at the prime of his career, was willing to put that career into abeyance, based on principles. He stood firm, while willing to face jail. That alone gives one pause for reflection.
Ali would not return to the ring until October1970, when he knocked out the ‘Bellflower Bomber’ Jerry Quarry, in the third round. Quarry, though not in Ali’s league, was no slouch, with a career record of 53-9, including 32 knockouts.
Yes, Ali came back, but legal exoneration took longer. That came based on a unanimous Supreme Court decision, albeit on technical grounds.
Ali was a man who stood tall, putting his principles first. When he lit the torch at the Atlanta Olympics, it was indeed a touching moment.
By the time Muhammed Ali had passed, much of America had not only forgiven him, but had learned to love and respect him. Agreement with his actions was not required,
Now, let’s fast forward to the hypocrite Rapinoe. She stated in her NYC speech:
“We have to be better, we have to love more, hate less. We got to listen more and talk less. We got to know that this is everybody’s responsibility. Every single person here, every single person who’s not here, every single person who doesn’t want to be here. Every single person who agrees and doesn’t agree. It’s our responsibility to make this world a better place.”
How does this jibe with her previous comments? Specifically:
“…she stands by her White House comments (that she) still has no intention of celebrating the USA's championship with President Donald Trump because of his message that "excludes a lot of people. It excludes people that look like me and are me, of course, I think he's trying to divide so he can conquer, not unite so we can all conquer."
Previously, her vulgarities and profanities demonstrated her contempt for the President. This of course resonates with those who deify her. She also spoke proudly of the unsportsmanlike actions of teammates in reference to the insulting “tea-sipping” incident.
Rapinoe does not offer unity, she is in fact a divider, one that comes wrapped in F-bombs. I would ask Rapinoe: rather than telling the President to F-off, would it not be in your best interest to rise above that, to show yourself to be the better person?
Rapinoe’s position on “equal pay” is a popular liberal farce, one not based on economic reality. But based on the false claim that “women earn 77% of what men earn.” This claim was systematically demolished by Thomas Sowell years ago. Yet ignorance persists.
What Rapinoe, who by the way is a multimillionaire earning over $165,000 a year, demands ignores basic laws of economics, one taught at the high-school level. That law being: supply and demand. If you want to make more money, don’t demand it, increase the demand for your product.
You don’t do that by using the F-word in reference to the President, by stepping on the American Flag during a celebration or by becoming the Colin Kaepernick of women’s soccer.
And you also do not do that by losing 5-3 to a bunch of 15-year-old boys.
A note to Rapinoe: If you want to earn the respect of the nation, you may want to take a cue from Muhammed Ali ‘who believed in something and sacrificed everything.’
Rapinoe has made no such sacrifice, while she stands on the threshold of capital gains.