4/14/2007

The Legacy of Jackie Robinson

Having recently posted about black leaders addressing the legacy of slavery in the US in the 20th Century, I came across this article about celebrating`60 years since Jackie Robinson broke baseball’s color barrier. The author laments the fact that the proportion of African-American players (which doesn’t include black Hispanics) is declining, which undermines Robinson’s legacy.

That’s just dumb. Robinson’s legacy is not about affirmative action, or achieving a certain threshold of blacks playing baseball. It’s about giving those with the most ambition and ability to perform and succeed at the highest levels. If African-Americans prefer other sports, for whatever reason, it means nothing for Robinson’s legacy. As long as the best black athletes are given that chance to compete – and they are – then the numbers don’t matter. Draft day remains color-blind, and that’s the greatest tribute to the men who made that happen.

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