History tells us that sports fields, courts and victories have never been colorblind or devoid of politics. History also tells us that that the story of race and sports didn’t start by taking a knee.
This month, KING 5 is starting new conversation series called Race & Sports. We’re going to peel back some of the layers and explore the intersection of race and sports from various perspectives. We’ll start by talking with a few high school coaches from the Seattle area. We’ll also talk to local fans and former athletes.
The goal of this series is to take the conversation beyond a debate of the national anthem protest. The goal of this series is to explore how social justice issues shape sports now and throughout history, and how sports can be more inclusive with regards to race and gender.
The following quote from Washington State University professor David Leonard featured in The Undefeated served, in part, as one of the guiding themes to this series:
“America’s sporting fields are not postracial promised lands; they are not places where race doesn’t matter because the only thing that counts is whether you can score touchdowns or make buckets. Sports is not the 'colorblind mecca' that we are routinely promised each and every weekend. Sports, like America itself, is a place where race matters."
We know that this series will just scratch the surface and that we don’t have every voice and/or perspective at the table. As with our previous conversation series -- Race & Parenting -- our goal is to start a conversation that we hope you can continue at home.