At a time when athletics are at the forefront of both academic and professional sports activity in the United States, it’s of special interest to see their effect in both areas; a major chunk of which is being played out in the political arena. Still dominant is the factor of race prejudice, intensified by the presence of an African-American President, with strong interests in both sectors.
For those with opinions still rooted in the narrow and impractical pursuit of White supremacy, Bill Bradley, former Olympic and professional basketball star, Rhodes Scholar and former U.S. Senator, has painted a stark yet practical picture: America, he posits, will never effectively overcome the socio-economic problems it faces, until it effectively deals with and overcomes the continuing problem of ‘Race Prejudice.’
Unfortunately, for Black and White Americans, the problem of race prejudice is deep-rooted and has been needlessly and heedlessly allowed to fester and intensify, from its inception to the present. It’s time intelligent Americans put it to rest.
In a speech to members of the New York State Legislature (around 1880), the then-famed ‘Great Agnostic’, Robert (Green) Ingersoll noted: “Men are not superior by reason of the accidents of race or color. They are superior, who have the best heart – the best brain.” In her own remarks to the State Legislature, in 1860, Elizabeth Cady Stanton said: “…the prejudice against color--- is no stronger than that against sex--- the Negro’s skin and the woman’s sex are both prima-facie evidence, they were intended for subjection by White men.”
As this President calls on all Americans, from whatever national or racial extraction, to enhance America’s immigrant heritage with tolerant and equal acceptance and involvement, we have an opportunity – as never before – to lay such un-American intolerance to rest. Our failure could well make certain, we may never experience another.
The views expressed by commentators are solely those of the authors. They do not necessarily reflect the views of this station or its management.