THE OLYMPICS!!!

Sorry I’ve been slacking for a few days, the niece and nephew came over this weekend and I’m just now recovering.  My niece is 4 and my nephew is 9 months old and OH MY GOODNESS, I feel for the mothers out there.  It’s like children have the power to just suck all of the energy out of you and use it for themselves.  It’s an amazing phenomenon that I don’t understand why it hasn’t been researched yet.  But, back to what this post is really suppose to be about… THE OLYMPICS!!

The 2014 Winter Olympics, the XXII Olympic Winter Games, officially kicked off with its opening ceremony, on February 7th, in Sochi, Russia. A record 88 nations are competing in this Winter Games.  The Winter Games are a complete 180 when compared to the Summer Games.  First of all it’s all snow and ice. Secondly, it doesn’t seem as American dominated, we seem a little out of our element or something… The type of sports are on a whole other level. From lube where you’re sliding up to 80mph down pretty much a curvy slide of ice or ski jumping, sliding down a snow ramp and jumping distances of at least 100 km…on skis. When I watch the Olympics I get like extra American.   I cringe every time an American makes the slightest mistake, knowing that a seventh of a half of a second or .001 could be in between our flag being raised and our national anthem being played at the end over another country’s. It’s just when their run is all over, you can either see the joy when they make it to the top of the podium or the anguish, complete disappointment when they don’t make the score or time or meet every expectation they have been training to meet since the last Olympic Games . If I were in the games I would be the Kate Henson, really just happy to be there. Can you imagine bringing a part of something that big? I mean there are athletes there from all over the WORLD. I personally love the Olympics and hope to be present at one one day.  It’s just one time, to me, when the World is all on one accord, brought together by the love of their nation and sports. Speaking of the Olympics, I didn’t forget my pact I made a couple of post ago … Seen this picture before?….

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You’ve probably seen this image on inspirational posters or maybe ran across someone wearing a shirt with this image on it.  It’s 1968 at the Mexico City Olympics.  Gold medalist, Tommie Smith and Silver medalist, John Carlos, two black Americans, wearing black gloves, raise their fist while the Star Spangled Banner was played.  Just through this simple action, they were suspended from the U.S. team and even received death threats.  And you can’t forget silver medalist, Australian, Peter Norman who stood supportively and solidly with Smith and Carlos.  It was a movement called the Olympic Project for Human Rights. Carlos, Smith and Norman all wore patches with those five simple words.  

OPHR had five central demands:

• Restore Muhammad Ali’s title. Ali had been stripped of his title in June 1967 for his refusal to fight in Vietnam.

• Remove Avery Brundage as head of the United States Olympic Committee. Brundage was a notorious white supremacist best remembered today for sealing the deal on Hitler hosting the 1936 Olympics in Berlin. He once praised Hitler’s regime at a rally in Madison Square Garden. As head of the International Olympic Committee, he also opposed the entry of women as competitors.

• Disinvite South Africa and Rhodesia. This was a conscious effort to express internationalism with the black liberation struggles occurring in these two apartheid states.

• Boycott the New York Athletic Club.

• Hire More Black Coaches.

Today, Avery Brundage, Rhodesia and apartheid South Africa are history, African-American coaches are hired without controversy and Muhammad Ali has become a legend as he was meant to be.

Who would’ve thought a simple fist raise and head bow, would resinate with souls even 45 years later?

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