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OLYMPIC RINGS OF COLOUR

BLACK GOLD

As with any field of work or profession, there has always been a sense of inferiority/superiority amongst colleagues; not just based on merit or qualifications, but often times based on unjust or biased rankings. The latter of which includes a few, racial stereotypes that have been reinforced -on a global scale- since the days of African enslavement.

(Gold Medalist Tommie Smith, (center) and Bronze medallist John Carlos (right) x 1968 Olympics. 200 meter) 

 
(Delos Thurber (bronze), Cornelius Johnson (gold), and David Albritton (silver) x 1936 Olympics. High jump)

Millions of Pan-African people (once enslaved and disbursed throughout the world, some 400+ years ago), have been marginally slighted when it comes to positive representation in the media, and are routinely depicted in a negative light (whether societal circumstances are true or untrue). Throughout the ages, however, descendants of the African Diaspora, have adapted to and evolved in foreign relations and have staked claim to a vast number of important, cultural contributions made in education, policy, medicine, arts, entertainment, sports, etc. Moreover, Pan-African men and women have consistently dominated within the field of sports, and when it comes to competition (including the Olympics), the media attention can be both good and bad; on one-hand, Blacks may be seen as fearless, natural competitors, and then on-the-other-hand, seen as unintelligent and only good for running up-and-down a field (win or lose).

 
(Jesse Owens captured 4 Gold Medals and battled Nazi-racism at the 1936 Olympics)

Outside of some of the apparent, racist undertones in sports (and other professions), Blacks have continued on a path to overall excellence, and such accomplishments can be seen in the likes of Oprah Winfrey and U.S. President Barack Obama. Moreover, researchers have pondered the existence of a genetic predisposition which empowers Black athletes to naturally score at the top, powering over all other ethnicities; in the book, Taboo (Public Affairs, 1999), written by Jon Entine, an in-depth examination of this topic is explored.

 
(Jon entine x Taboo. 1999)

Entine (a White-American), is an Emmy award-winning journalist, and is the founding director of the Genetic Literacy Project and a Senior Fellow at the Center for Health & Risk Communication at George Mason University. Supporting genealogical research and proudly heralding Black, athletic achievement in his sports tome, Entine writes, "To the degree that is a purely scientific debate, the evidence of black superiority in many sports is persuasive and decisively confirmed on the playing field. Elite athletes who trace most or all of their ancestry to Africa are by and large better than the competition."

(Gold Medalist Daley Thompson x 1980/84 Olympics. Decathlon)

Commenting on Entine's book, New York Times journalist, Jim Holt, said, "Entine cites credible research, for example, that blacks of West African ancestry (which would include most African-Americans) have a higher ratio of 'fast-twitch' muscle fiber than whites do, which gives them an edge at leaping and sprinting. East African blacks have more energy-producing enzymes in their muscles and seem to process oxygen more efficiently, which translates into greater aerobic endurance."

(Gold Medalist Jackie Joyner-Kersee x 1988/92 Olympics. Heptathlon/Long jump)

Further debating the topic, as it related to some Black athletes' medal-winning victories at the 2012 London Olympics, in an interview with Science 2.0, Entine stated, "There’s no need to make consideration of race in sports a taboo. In fact, sports provide the most rigid laboratory control possible—the level playing field—to guide us through the thicket of ideological correctness."

(Gold Medalist Anthony Nesty x 1988 Olympics. 100-metre butterfly)

This might be a possible explanation why Ussain Bolt EXPLODED in the Track & Field competitions (to win gold)... or why Gabby Douglas SOARED above her gymnastics counterparts (to win gold). Either way, these are all interesting things that make you go hmm... or at least, things that would make you interested in the competition, even more, lol.

(Gold Medalist Usain Bolt x 2008/12 Olympics. 100/200 meter, 4x100 meter relay)

 
(Gold Medalist Dominique Dawes x 1996 Olympics. Team gymnastics)

 
(Gold Medalist Cullen Jones x 2008/12 Olympics. 4x 100-meter freestyle relay)

(Gold Medalist Gaby Douglas x 2012 Olympics. Team gymnastics, Individual all-around) 

 
(Gold Medalist Anthony Ervin x 2000 Olympics. 50-meter freestyle)

 
(Gold Medalist Bryan Clay x 2008 Olympics. Decathlon)

 
(Gold Medalist Angelo Taylor x 2008 Olympics. 400 meter hurdles, 4x400 meter relay)

(Gold Medalist Allyson Felix x 2008/12 Olympics. 200 meter, 4x100 meter relay)

(Gold Medalist Christian Taylor x 2012 Olympics. Triple jump)


(Gold Medalist Aries Merritt x 2012 Olympics. 110 meter hurdles)

(Gold Medalist Claressa Shields x 2012 Olympics. Women's middleweight boxing)


(Gold Medalist David Rudisha x 2012 Olympics. 800 meter)

;-)

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References:
www.google.com, www.nytimes.com, www.science20.com, www.jonentine.com, www.amazon.com, www.ushmm.org, www.wikipedia.org, www.London2012.com

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