Why was he "the greatest"? Because he believed he is the greatest! And there were many reasons to Muhammad Ali’s exceptional personality!
He grew up as Cassius Clay and decided to change his identity.
That is not only expression of freedom but also an act of defiance of an African America who wanted to show America and the whole world that black people don't accept history as "fait’s accomplice.”
His second uprising was his refusal to be recruited for the Vietnam War.
That was not only a personal demonstration of disagreement with the official US policy but again an act of challenging societal norms in favor of the freedom of the individual.
And Muhammad Ali could afford such actions, becoming in the mean time a world figure and an American icon.
He was always Jupiter in the old Latin saying: “Quod licet Iovie non licet Bovie.”
A champion of everything!
From boxing, to dealing with the media, to communication with the public, to conducting family life, to putting politics and politicians where they belong, to representing the US in the best possible way.
In many ways Muhammad Ali was ahead of his time! This is why people admired him, respected him and praised him!
May he rest in peace and be a constant reminder of a simple truth: we are after all, human beings!
5 June 2016