Southern Illinois University Carbondale Daily Egyptian Diversity News Archive (Southern Illinois University Carbondale)
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Athletes Differ on Olympic Boycott
Athletes Differ on Olympic Boycott
Item IDEgyptian19680130Athletes.tif
TitleAthletes Differ on Olympic Boycott
AuthorRick Schwab
DescriptionNegro athletes threatening a boycott of the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico have drawn mixed reactions from SIU Negro athletes.
Original Publication SourceDaily Egyptian
Date1968 January 30
Volume49
Issue78
SectionSports
Page(s)16
Digital File Format.TIF (Tagged Image Format)
Digital File PublisherSpecial Collections Research Center, Morris Library, Southern Illinois University Carbondale
Rights StatementAll copyrights held by Southern Illinois University Carbondale. For permission to reproduce, distribute, or otherwise use this image, please contact the Special Collections Research Center, Morris Library, Southern Illinois University Carbondale. Phone: + 1 (618) 453-2516. Email: http://reftrack.lib.siu.edu/reft100.aspx?key=SCRCEmail&cllcid=SCRR
CollectionDaily Egyptian Diversity News Archive (Southern Illinois University Carbondale)
TranscriptAthletes Differ on Olympic Boycott

By Rick Schwab

Negro athletes threatening a boycott of the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico have drawn mixed reactions from SIU Negro athletes.
"like most of the athletes who have expressed their views I am against the boycott, " says Oscar Moore, an outstanding Saluki miler.
"For one thing, proficiency in track and field events enables to receive scholarship offers to universities which further their education.
Moore continued. "Anothr point is that all the Olympic participants are not well known by the public, and this boycott might have the desired effect."
Mitch Livingston, an SIU high jumper, expressed other views. "If I felt the boycott would help the Negro case, I would be unequivocally for it, " he said. "I feel the boycott might help, but to a limited degree. Perhaps it will show how important the Negro is to this country, not only in athletics, but in every field."
SIU's basketball team captain, Dick Garrett, is undecided. "I really don't know which side of the issue to take, " he said. "I believe the Negro athletes who boycott the Games have a point, but I don't know if I can support the boycott."
Chuck Benson, one of Garrett's teammates on the cage squad and a track competior, is taking a wait-and-see attitude. "I haven't formulated an opinion as of yet on the boycott and have not decided whether to join the boycotters or to back participation in the Games by Negroes."
The varied views taken by SIU athletes coincide with the views expressed by other well-known Negroes through the country.
Jesse Owens, a four-time gold medal winner at the 1936 Olympic Games, says "there is no place in the athletic world for politics."
On the other side of the issue is the talkative Cassius Clay (Mohammed Ali), a 1960 gold medal winner in boxing. "Giving up a chance at the Olympics and a gold medal is a big sacrifice, " Clay argues, "but anything they do that's designed to get freedom and equality for their people then I'm with them 100 per cent."
Jackie Robinson, the first Negro to play in baseball's major league, surprised some of his followers by supporting the boycott. "Negroes should do everything short of violence to obtain their goals, " Rodinson says. "I love my country but it's high time America says it loves me...it's a two-way street."
The boycotters are mis-directed, according to Norvell Lee, a 1952 gold medal boxer. "I don't know who the people are behind the boycott but they don't realize what they're doing, " Lee says. "The young athletes are ill-advised. Athletics is the only field in which the Negroes have been treated well."
Among the demands of the potential boycotters is the immediate resignation of Avery Brundage, head of the International Olympic Committee. They also want to end "discrimination" against Negroes and jews at the New York Athletic Club and the reinstatement of Cassius Clay as the world heavyweight boxing champion.
They also want the appointment of a second Negro coach to the U.S. Olympic team, the appointment of a Negro to the Olympic committee, and the end of competition between U.S. teams of South Africa and Southern Rhodesia.
Fifty of the 362 U.S. athletes participating in the 1964 Olympic Games at Tokyo were Negroes. America won 126 gold medals of which 22 were won by Negroes.
LanguageEnglish
TypeText
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