In the spirit of July 2 marking the 50th anniversary of America’s first signed Civil Rights Act , on the heals of last night’s pondering of those rights – I’m re-posting “Olympic Power”. I can’t watch this clip without becoming emotional. Take 4 1/2 minutes out of your life to watch and ponder. All I ask is that you try to find the absurdity of hatred, fear, and exclusion based on the colour of your skin.
Fresh off closing ceremonies at Sochi, still smiling from the exhilaration of Canadian men and women’s hockey taking gold, I find myself pondering another Olympic moment.
The courage of Tommie Smith and John Carlos exemplifies the civil rights movement. I’m not going to explain why – take 5 minutes out of your life to watch a snapshot in time, a moment in history when Olympics’ sacred line was crossed, when damn the consequences ruled over “tow the line”. Smith and Carlos managed to define injustice without uttering a word.
I often write of protest; specifically my dismay at society’s screwed up priorities – our spoon fed, cult of celebrity, gun toting, fundamentalist, reality television, someone else’s problem world. For those too young to understand the optimism, hope and determination of people who believed they could make a difference, I wish I could roll back time. When coffee shops and campuses burst under the weight of collective purpose…
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