Olympic FeverPosted July 28th, 2012 by Sharon Morgan
It is hard not to get caught up in Olympic fever, especially when the whole world is watching. It drew me in on the first night… I watched the opening ceremony.
Having an interest in many things British (including the genealogy of the Scottish men who enslaved people on both sides of my family), I was most curious to see how Britain would portray its history.
I was impressed with the inclusion of so many non-Anglo-Saxon people. The rainbow of skin colors showed a conscious effort to depict the diversity of England’s “children.” The role reversals of their characters though was off putting as they portrayed the protagonists who victimized them.
I guess you can’t blame England for putting its best face forward — projecting the GOOD side of all they did to the world rather than bringing up the uglies of Empire. The cavalcade jumped straight from sheep herding to the Industrial Revolution with not even a nod at slavery, conquest and colonization.
I enjoyed the tribute to the Beatles. I LOVED seeing a body double of the Queen bail out of James Bond’s helicopter. As the nations paraded around the stadium I alternately cheered and cried for the countries I know and love.
I can’t help but wonder what was on her mind as the Queen cast her dour countenance over the entire proceedings; picking her nails as her subjects marched in.
Maybe she was thinking about the Olympic protest in 1908 when an Irish American athlete refused to dip the flag because her great grandfather would not recognize Irish independence. I KNOW she wasn’t thinking about 1936 when Jesse Owens pissed Hitler off as he sprinted into history or 1968 when John Carlos and Tommie Smith raised a Black Power salute to the world. (These are things I was thinking about as I watched the spectacle of 2012.)
It is clear that Gather at the Table is a call that needs to reach far beyond the borders of the United States. The wounds of slavery and racism are worldwide. They are not something the Olympics can cure.
Now, let’s see who wins what!
Eastern Mennonite University
Harlem Book Fair
Phillis Wheatley Book Award
Post Racial Society
Summer Peacebuilding Institute
Tulsa race riot
Most recent posts
Standing in Ferguson where Michael Brown died
Pull Back the Covers
Working with Corporate America on Issues of Race
Give Gather at the Table for the Holidays, SAVE $$$ & Support a Great Cause!
Gather at the Table authors recite Gettysburg Address for PBS site
Gather at the Table Paperback coming THIS WEEK!
From a Reader: thoughts on Gather at the Table
GREAT deal on the last of the Gather at the Table hardcovers from Beacon Press
Gather at the Table called “brave and compelling” in new YES! Magazine review
Gather at the Table is #1
Most recent comments
Digging Up Dead White People (3)
melissa marraste`: coming from this same family as you its strange and comforting to...
Barack Obama, Fifty Shades of Grey, Louis C.K., and Gather at the Table (8)
isabelle: Thank you for the amazing work you have done
Lawdy Miss Scarlet! (4)
emilywotzka: Wonderful book…completely opened my eyes to the harsh realities of...
Standing in Ferguson where Michael Brown died (2)
Sandra: Thank you. I am from St. Louis County and now, almost a year after Mike...
Alexis: I've seen the documentary Traces of the Trade. I had no idea you guys had...