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Salute in protest… The Traveler…

I journeyed today to Parsons, Kansas, via The Parsons Sun of October 17, 1968. [1] I found the Olympics were being held in Mexico City and that the United States sprinter┬áTommie Smith had broken the World’s Record. But that is not completely what claimed the headline, it reads “Set World Mark – Sprinters In Protest”. “Black, not gold, became the dominant color of these troubled 19th Olympic Games today… the dark cloud of racial unrest overshadowed the record-breaking performances of the U.S. athletes. ┬áTommie Smith and John Carlos raised high the block-gloved fist of racial protest Wednesday while still on the podium after receiving their medals for the a 1-3 finish in the 200-meter dash… ‘White America would not understand’ the gesture, Carlos… ‘They recognize me only when I do something bad and they call em ‘Negro…'”

Due to their actions, the Olympic Committee’s response was to suspend the two athletes from the US team and ban them from the Olympic Village. The US Olympic Committee refused, but then they were threatened with banning the entire US track team. This threat lead to the expulsion of the two athletes from the Games.

~The Traveler