Muslim legendary boxer Muhammad Ali has called on Muslims to “stand up” against those who “use Islam to advance their own personal agenda” in reaction against anti-Muslim remarks by GOP candidate Donald Trump.
“We as Muslims have to stand up to those who use Islam to advance their own personal agenda. They have alienated many from learning about Islam. True Muslims know or should know that it goes against our religion to try and force Islam on anybody,” said the American former professional boxer in a statement on Wednesday as Trump was facing more pressure in the US political system over a proposal to ban Muslims entry into the United States.
Ali’s “punch,” as NBC News put it in its report, came in response to the Islamophobic billionaire’s comments on Monday, calling for “total and complete shutdown of Muslims” in the wake of a shooting in San Bernardino, California, that left 14 people dead.
Anti-Islam comments peaked among US conservatives particularly after deadly terrorist attacks by Daesh Takfiris shocked Paris.
The champion fighter referred to the massacres, saying, “I am a Muslim and there is nothing Islamic about killing innocent people in Paris, San Bernardino, or anywhere else in the world. True Muslims know that the ruthless violence of so called Islamic Jihadists goes against the very tenets of our religion.”
The American authorities “should use their position to bring understanding about the religion of Islam and clarify that these misguided murderers have perverted people’s views on what Islam really is,” noted the former heavyweight champion of the world and peace activist.
Many American and foreign authorities have denounced Trump’s comments, with the White House even saying the Islamophobic stance “disqualifies” him from running for the 2016 presidential election in the US.
Although he has been under fire, the billionaire developer and former reality TV star defended his proposal subsequently, saying “I don’t care.”