Muhammad Ali’s tragic real-life story
When people discuss the ever-famous Muhammad Ali, they often accentuate the positives and eliminate the negatives. They celebrate his boxing prowess, seemingly bottomless charisma, and civil rights advocacy. When covering his struggles, they tend to look for silver linings. We’ll focus on the darker aspects of his existence. There will be little emphasis on accolades or charming anecdotes and few inspirational takeaways, but this is mainly the story of Ali’s shortcomings, regrets, and suffering.
Nothing here is intended to downplay Ali’s amazing accomplishments or otherwise detract from his image. He undeniably earned a permanent spot in the pantheon of cultural heroes, but he also displayed streaks of shocking villainy, and the awful price he paid for boxing glory illustrates the sometimes unbridgeable gap between success and well-being. To gloss over or soften these harsh realities ignores Muhammad Ali’s humanity and transforms him into a myth. Here’s a look at when The Greatest was at his worst.