Interview with Kareem Abdul-Jabbar

And, did this meeting have any impact on you? Did Ali's presence, and, and his position have any effect on you?


Well, I was just, uh, happy to meet Ali. I, you know, just as, person-to-person, and it was nice meeting the other Black athletes and having some type of solidarity with them. The meeting, really, was, um, kind of futile in that it, really, we really couldn't do anything, but we let Black people around the country know that we supported Ali. I think that by that time, Black Americans understood that they were, their presen--their presence in Vietnam was highly disproportionate to their percentage of the American population, and that, uh, the front-line casualties were being absorbed by Black Americans in, in much greater numbers than they should have. And, um, this, this impact was, you know, obvious to everybody and I think this kind of heightened that.