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Taking a Stand, Taking a Knee
January 6, 2018 @ 6:30 pm - 9:00 pmFree
Hear from ESPN sports journalist Jemele Hill, Army Green Beret and NFL player Nate Boyer and 1968 Olympian Dr. Tommie Smith, as they share their experiences on the trials and triumphs of unexpected activism.
This is a key opportunity to hear firsthand how bold citizens within the sports arena use their platforms to tackle today’s most pressing civil and human rights concerns.
Nate Boyer is a former active-duty Green Beret, a philanthropist, community leader, and a former member of the Seattle Seahawks. De Oppresso Liber (“To Free the Oppressed”) is the Army Special Forces motto, and the reason Mr. Boyer wanted to become a Green Beret. His letter to Colin Kaepernick when Kaepernick was sitting during the National Anthem led to a conversation about ‘taking a knee’ instead. After the conversation Boyer wrote, “Let’s just keep moving forward. This is what America should be all about.”
Jemele Hill is the co-host of ESPN’s flagship SportsCenter “The Six”. Hill has used her position in front of the camera and on Social Media to call attention to racism, sexism, and ignorance in many forms. She frequently reports on public responses to various ways athletes take a stand.
DR. TOMMIE SMITH
At 6’3″ and 185 pounds, Tommie Smith had the ideal build for a long sprinter, with trademark-accelerations down the stretch that made him one of the most versatile sprinters in history. With all-time bests of 10.1 seconds for 100 meters, 19.83 seconds for 200 meters and 44.5 seconds at 400 meters, Smith still ranks high on the entire world all-time performance lists.
During the Olympic medal ceremony for the record breaking men’s 200m dash, both 1st place (gold) and 3rd place (bronze) medalists held up a black-gloved fist during the playing of their home national anthem. A silent gesture in protest of the ongoing civil rights injustices, primarily back home in America.