Party like it’s 1947

Jackie and BarackThere’s no doubt in my mind history has been kind to what it was really like for Jackie Robinson, the first black player in Major League Baseball in 1947.

The soft, fuzzy focus of America’s collective memory, along with baseball’s canonization of the man, has let seep through the cracks of time the details of hardcore hatred and ignorance embedded in white America at the very idea of a colored man playing baseball.

It’s not hard to imagine that every single word, gesture and action by the black man was challenged, scrutinized, seen as un-American and a radical change from all that was good and sacred about this great country of ours.

 “Will it take decades before a black president is considered equal to a white president?”

White men did not want to be on the same playing field with the black man, let alone acknowledge that the black man had any positive contribution to the game, the team, their individual lives.

Jackie RobinsonJust because the black man was allowed to play didn’t make all that hatred go away. Players had to be forced by owners to play with the black man. And while the black man played the game, the black man was still not considered equal.

The black man was criticized like no other player before him, booed like no other player before him, spit on like no other player before him, called names like no other player before him, blocked from playing like no other player before him.

It took decades before a black athlete would be considered equal to a white athlete, in that they both have an equal shot at greatness, based on ability.

There’s no doubt in my mind history will be kind to what it’s really like for President Barack Obama, the first black president.

The soft, fuzzy focus of America’s collective memory will let seep through the cracks of time the details of hardcore hatred and ignorance embedded in white America at the very idea of a black man leading the country.

Every single word, gesture and action by the black man is challenged, scrutinized, seen as un-American and a radical change from all that was good and sacred about this great country of ours.

ObamaRepublicans and Tea Partiers do not want to be on the same playing field with the black man, let alone acknowledge that the black man has any positive contribution the country, the congress, their individual lives.

Just because the black man is allowed to be president doesn’t make all that hatred go away. And while the black man acts as president, the black man is still not considered equal.

The black man is criticized like no other president before him, booed like no other president before him, called names like no other president before him, blocked from running the country like no other president before him.

Will it take decades before a black president is considered equal to a white president, in that they both have an equal shot at greatness, based on ability?

I wonder if Mr. Robinson’s second year in the big leagues was any better than his first?

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