Jackie Robinson, Jack Johnson, and Jesse Owens are all African American athletes who went through the segregation of pro sports to help pave the way for future pro athletes such as Susan Bolt, Michael Jordan, and many more ammos African American Athletes in today’s world. Jackie Robinson was the first African American baseball player, Jack Johnson a heavyweight boxing champion of the world, and Jesse Owens a four time gold medalist at the Berlin Olympics in 1936. These three men fought through the race barrier to not only helped African American’s become more easily accepted into the world of professional sports but also in the real world.
First of all, although Jackie Robinson was not the best African American baseball player of his time, his attitude and ability to handle racist harassment led the way for the rest of his race to play Major League Baseball, amongst other sports. He opened the door for his entire race to play professional sports and gain acceptance as more desegregation took place. After fighting in World War II from 1941 until 1944, Jackie played for the Kansas City Monarchs of the Negro Leagues from 1944 until 1946. In 1946, he was selected as the best person to break the color barrier in Major League Baseball.In 1943, Branch Rickety, general manager of the Brooklyn Dodgers at the time, had an idea though to be outrageous by many during that period. He considered signing some black players to make up for the wartime heritage often. He narrowed down the list of prospects, searching for the best player to integrate baseball.
The likely choices for talent would have been Satchel Page or Josh Gibson. Rickety, however, wanted not only a star but a person who could deal with the harassment from the public, some teammates, and the overall opposition.Knowing of Jackass’s talent and his hate for segregation, Rickety set up an interview hoping he could convince Robinson to sign a contract. When Rickety told Robinson why he had been brought to see him, Jackass’s reaction was a combination of several emotions. When he did find the ability to speak, his answer was “Yes. ” Robinson was ready to accept the challenge. When Jackie first came to the Dodgers, he was without a locker, and was told that he had to spend nights at separate hotel rooms from his teammates.
On the team bus, Jackie had to sit in the back.Some teammates actually threatened not to sign contracts if they had to play on the same team as Robinson. Jackie Robinson was the only African American baseball player in the league at the time so he was the prime target for death threats and criticism even though he was one of the better players f the team. Jackie though multiple times of calling it quits but he knew that if he did he would have failed to have broken the color barrier. He knew he had to make a sacrifice for future generations of African American.Jackie Robinson gave courage to African Americans not only in baseball, but in life. Secondly, Jack Johnson was one of the first ever African American athletes to break the color barrier coming forty years earlier than Jackie Robinson.
Johnson could have arguably been the best heavyweight boxer of his time, posting 79 wins and only 8 losses on route to becoming the Heavy. Weight Hampton of the World. Both of Johnny’s parents were former slaves who worked jobs that barely made ends meet to support their six children.At first African American boxers were allowed to box, but they were not allowed to fight for the Heavyweight Championship of the World, for they were deemed unworthy. For years, even though African Americans were not allowed to fight for the major title, Johnson chased the reigning champ of the time, James Jiffies, for a fight. James Jiffies refused every time, saying he would not fight a black man and soon retired undefeated. Eventually, after taking down many whites in unbelievable fights, Johnson won the World Haughtier title, beating Tommy Burns.
The police had to stop the fight, with Johnson beating Burns relentlessly.Johnson was named the champion, and the black segregation was so bad at the time that in the lasting moments of the fight, the camera was turned off as to not show Johnson being named the winner. Although Johnny’s life fell apart with personal non boxing related issues, Johnson lived by his own rules, and had habits to prove he wasn’t going to let racism bother him. Johnson was hinting towards fellow African Americans to allow his example, and to stand up for their rights. He not only fought for his freedom in the ring, but he fought for the freedom and to negate segregation outside the ring.Thirdly, Jesse Owens will always be known as a great Olympian for his performance at the Berlin Olympics in 1936 in which he won four gold medals. Jesse Owens created a historic legacy not just because of his record finishes on the track, but also due to the challenging times in which he competed.
The 1 936 Olympic games took place in Berlin, Germany, when Jesse Owens was just twenty-two years of age. At that time, Doll Hitler ruled Germany. Hitler intended to prove that the German race was greater than all others and he intended to prove it in the Olympics.He did not approve of the Americans having African American or Jewish athletes. Jesse Owens upset Hitler by beating Hitter’s favorite runner Eric Barrymore in a race. Jesse Owens ended up winning four gold medals at the Olympics. Throughout the Olympics, Hitler invited gold medalist to join him in the German’s leader’s box.
Jesse Owens was never invited by Hitler despite his four gold medals. When Jesse Owens won the gold medal for the long jump, Lug Long a German athlete held Jesses hand up in the air in front of the crowd.He then started chanting Jesses name, and the audience began chanting as well. Jesse Owens accomplished more than just four gold medals in the 1 936 Olympics. He showed the world that anyone can do whatever they want if they follow their dreams. Owens created a lasting legacy not just because of his record running times, but also due to the obstacles he overcame that plagued minorities in Hitless Germany. Jesse Owens’ influential story of the Berlin Olympics became an important part of American history since it symbolizes he drive of the American spirit to succeed despite the challenges we may face.