IOC On the Wrong Side of History, Yet Again

The International Olympic Committee has taken a giant step backward — all the way to 1968.

That’s when Americans Tommie Smith and John Carlos were expelled from the Mexico City Summer Games after they each raised a fist in a human rights salute during the playing of the Star-Spangled Banner on the winners’ podium.

Smith and Carlos had just captured the gold and bronze, respectively, in the 200-meter race, and their provocative gesture called attention to the human rights abuses suffered by Black Americans. …

Preach! Marley, you have turned up the fire on the pot on the proverbial stove. It needs to be hotter. You are right. I will add a bit more hot sauce to my writing and speaking. The time is now. We have waited long enough for White people to "feel good" about what we are doing. We need them to feel uncomfortable about what they are NOT doing. Brilliant.

By Vernon L. Andrews

I’ve spent more than three decades studying the intersection of sports, race and culture, drawing parallels between race relations in sports arenas and racism across the country. As an academic, it is an area of study that fascinated me because I wanted to research our racial divides through an institution that unites us. As a Black man, I sought to understand why and how, in both sports and society, the rules of the game were consistently rigged against us. In sports, this can be career-ending. In society, it can be fatal.

When I witnessed the brutal…

Let’s be clear about this: there is no way Georgia is going to get away with stealing people’s votes.

I guess I can say nice try, but I’d just be lying. If you want to steal people’s votes you do it at night in the dark away from the bright lights and where nobody sees you. Doesn’t the Republican Party know its own history? I mean, if you want to start the steal — to put a twist on a recently popular GOP catchphrase — you don’t have Gov. Brian Kemp sign a racist, Jim Crow 2.0 bill into law…

Wedding Cake for Erin and Vern
Wedding Cake for Erin and Vern

I know, we all want to put 2020 behind us. A decade from now, when we tell people we were engaged and married in 2020, eyebrows will raise. Why would you marry during the apocalypse? Love, that’s why. And an uncertain future. Who wants to fight zombies alone? But this union was highly improbable. Not even possible. Very unlikely. But it happened. The story is contained in three separate Facebook posts, below, in the order they went online. Hold on to your emotional hat.

Post #1

An open love letter to my Facebook Family about why on earth I’m getting…

I like sports. Many people do. I have stories from my youth, just like you do. Let’s converse about what many learned about sports in working-class communities as an analogy for our current state of presidential politics. Basically, many of us have seen this script before when battling for supremacy as kids playing pickup sports.


Kids play far more organized sports these days. Many of you won’t have experienced choosing your own squad to play pickup football, basketball or baseball. But in the old days, this is what we did — and how the drama flowed. …

Dear New Zealand: We need your help. We’ve got a squatter! I’ll tell you more about McDonald in a minute. But first, let me say that I miss you. I miss Canterbury, and Christchurch, and the Crusaders and the All Blacks. I want to give you an update on what’s been going on in the USA since I’ve been back.

I left New Zealand after 14 years of being a professor on the South Island at the University of Canterbury. I came back stateside for Barack Obama’s first inauguration in 2009. I stayed. I expected the USA to be filled…

Excerpt from the book, Policing Black Athletes: Racial Disconnect in Sports, (Peter Lang Publishers)

As we approach the September start of the NFL I’ve been wondering how players will protest, if at all. I’m guessing yes. Both basketball and baseball have come back strong with Black Lives Matter patches, emblems and commercials. Given that this movement for equality started with football, we should expect to see protests of some sort. Here’s your review of what happened when Colin Kaepernick decided to shake up the world. And the internet.

Of course, there are always Haters: A review of Twitter commentary


I’d prefer not calling it White Privilege, because I’m Black — and I want it too. But funny, regardless of how much I “act” American, I still can’t seem to get enough college degrees (4, and counting) to purchase me some privilege. How did we get here?

I’m dropping an excerpt from my forthcoming book, “Policing Black Athletes: Racial Disconnect in Sports” (Peter Lang Publishers) that lays out how Black Americans are told to behave like White people — like privilege is our birthright — so that we won’t be penalized in society (or after scoring a touchdown).

Basically, it’s…

Below is a discussion of social privilege — and life without it. Policing Black Athletes: Racial Disconnect in Sports, is my forthcoming book where I work hard to lay out for folks the pathway that leads us to where we are in sport and society — and a way to social justice.

But first, the most salient topic on many people’s minds is not a lesson in American history, and not even executions in broad daylight by those sworn to protect, but rather the looting that media camera crews are collecting as they cover anguished citizen protests about inequality.


Dr. Vernon Andrews

Dr. Andrews is an Oakland native and New Zealand citizen. His awesome new book is titled “Policing Black Athletes: Racial Disconnect in Sports” (NY: Peter Lang)

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