GOP frontrunner Donald Trump took a minute away from his criticisms aimed at fellow candidate former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush – as the two have been sparring back and forth this week – to take a swing at N.B.A basketball all-star Kareem Abdul-Jabbar, who said Trump was an enemy of the U.S. Constitution.
Abdul-Jabbar criticized Trump as a presidential candidate and compared him to Democratic candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) in a column in the Washington Post on Wednesday.
Abdul-Jabbar was raised Catholic, but changed his name to a Muslim one at age 24, identifying with Muslims. He has been a vocal critic of U.S. policy, so it is not surprising for him to criticize Trump’s candidacy for president as unfavorable, since Trump has been vocal about securing the border and tightening immigration due in part to a threat of immigrants from the Middle East who could have links to terrorism.
He also alleged Trump has a “vendetta against the press.”
Abdul-Jabbar also defended Fox News’ Megyn Kelly because Trump criticized the TV personality for how she handled the first GOP presidential primary debate, claiming she asked him harder questions than other candidates.
“Bad enough to alienate women in this way, but there’s even more insidious political crime here: attacking the First Amendment’s protection of a free press by menacing journalists,” Abdul-Jabbar wrote of the spat between Trump and Kelly.
Abdul-Jabbar’s statements defending women are ironic in light of a previous report by Breitbart News’ John Nolte. Nolte earlier reported about Abdul-Jabbar’s conversion to Islam and how it affected a relationship with an ex-girlfriend. Abdul-Jabbar appeared to be against women’s independence – not wanting to marry a non-Muslim woman, not wanting her to work or get an education.
Trump responded to Abdul-Jabbar’s criticisms.
“Kareem — Now I know why the press always treated you so badly — they couldn’t stand you,” Trump wrote over the top of a copy of Abdul-Jabbar’s Washington Post column, according to Yahoo News, which reported that Abdul-Jabbar posted the image of Trump’s written criticism across his column onto Facebook.
“The fact is that you don’t have a clue about life and what has to be done to make America great again! Best wishes, Donald Trump.”