Donald Trump told reporters at the White House today that he’s considering granting a posthumous Presidential pardon to the late great boxing legend and heavyweight champion of the world, Muhammad Ali, even though he doesn't need one.
According to MSNBC, Trump floated the thought earlier today before heading off to the Group of Seven nations summit in Canada’s Quebec City. “I am thinking about Muhammad Ali,” said Trump, adding that he was “looking at literally thousands of names” in regards to potential pardons from his administration.
Muhammad Ali, who passed away in 2016, was one of the most influential and inspiring American historical figures of the twentieth century. The man was not only a king in his own field, but an active civil rights activist who walked with the Black Panthers, a vocal opponent of the Nixon administration, and a righteous draft dodger of the Vietnam War on grounds of conscientious objection—the subsequent 1967 conviction for which was fortunately overturned by the U.S. Supreme Court in 1971.
As for Trump, this isn’t the first time he’s thinking of pardoning a boxer—he recently granted Jack Johnson, the first black American heavyweight champion that honor. Ali's family, however, doesn't seem too enthused at the prospect of Donald Trump being the one to bestow the late boxer with this recognition—particularly since there's no reason to do so, seeing as his conviction was overturned.
Hopefully, Donald Trump gets to read the above statement at some point today, and realizes that his considerations aren't automatically revered and appreciated—or rather, at all necessary.