Muhammed Ali Refuses Army (Movie)

Speech Analysis by Mileena Griffin

April 28,1967

Boxing champion Muhammad Ali refuses to be inducted into the U.S. Army and is immediately stripped of his heavyweight title. Ali, a Muslim, cited religious reasons for his decision to forgo military service.


Ali uses his reputation as a big league boxer and a civil rights speaker to attract his listeners/audience.

"But I ain't goin' no 10,000 miles to help murder and kill other poor people. If I wanna die, I'll die right here, right now fightin' you -- if I wanna die."

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Ali gives examples in his speech on how much of his life is wasted , doing so, he grips his audience emotionally.

"You wanna send me to jail? Fine, you go right ahead. I've been in jail for 400 years. I can be there for 4 or 5 more."

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Ali gives reasonable truth on how his religion is always criticized but still people want him to go to war to fight for them.

"Want me to go to somewhere and I fight for you. You won't even stand up for me right here in America for my rights and my religious beliefs. You won't even stand up for me right here at home."