Back by popular demand – because our viewers demanded it – Professor Lanier Holt from The Ohio State University, formerly a reporter for the Rochester Post Bulletin and a graduate of the University of Minnesota School of Journalism, discussed the recent protests in professional sports related to the Black Lives Matter movement. Prof. Holt said it’s a strike and not a boycott. “The biggest impact is the spillover effect,” Holt explained, especially when white-dominated sports like the NHL joined the play stoppage.
After the NBA went on strike to protest the police shooting of Jacob Blake, Los Angeles Clippers Coach Doc Rivers commented, “Donald Trump and all of them, talking about fear. We’re the ones getting killed, we’re the ones getting shot. All you do is keep hearing about fear. It’s amazing to me why we keep loving this country and this country does not love us back.”
In reference to the impact of Rivers’s comments, Holt said, “It might have been the moment for white America,” but not Black America. “We’ve always lived in two separate Americas,” he added.
“This is a watershed moment. This is the first time in my lifetime…that Black Lives Matter and Black lives have been at the forefront of American consciousness,” Holt concluded.
Living in a global pandemic, Holt noted that we must discuss racial disparities. “Now because of COVID-19, we have to discuss it. You can’t just say, ‘You know what? I’m just going to take my mind off this. I’m going to go to the show…’ There’s nothing else going on. Even if you’re doing something, you’re doing it online here. So you have to face it. And if you’re ignoring it now, you just don’t care.”
A surge of minority voices has responded to the police killing of George Floyd. In the weeks since Floyd uttered, “I can’t breathe,” as ex-Minneapolis Police Officer Derek Chauvin pressed down on his neck, a new collective of individuals is taking action by running for office, engaging in politics and stirring change among youth. But is the momentum a movement or a moment?
In the world of women’s sports, Title IX proved to be a boon to female athletes – but in the wake of its passing in 1972, women coaches took a hit. Even now, a mere 40 percent of female athletes are coached by women, a number that has remained stagnant for decades. But thankfully, these eight local female coaches are making a difference.
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