Shani Davis And Others Doing Blacks Proud In Canada
Tiger Woods has always disowned his blackness. For all his time in the eye of the public we have read of his relationships with non-Blacks and this has firmed the perception that Tiger was socialized by his parents to prefer non-White people in his social circle. Until recently when his fabricated world was shattered by the revelation of his many infidelities, Blacks may feel cheated because Tiger at the zenith of his iconic status did little to promote Black consciousness in the world. Now the very media which until recently he controlled like a master puppeteer has unleashed a torrent of criticism and invective which has effectively sealed his legacy. Yesterday an unforgiving media forced Tiger Wood to do what he has resisted for 3 months in one of his most contrived and insincere press conferences held to date.
It is ironic the shattering of the hitherto preteen image which Tiger had spent millions to fabricate has occurred in the month of February, Black History Month. What does it teach us? There is the adage which Bajans of the old days remember “manners maketh man”. It is not money which defines who or what you are but your behaviour over time. The fall of Tiger Woods as a Black golfer who has achieved in a White controlled sport, and all it represents, has placed a heavy dent in the Black psyche.
Against all the negatives which Tiger Woods has heaped on the backs of the already overburdened Black race, the good performances of Blacks in other areas of endeavours continue to illustrate the resilience of the Black race. In the Caribbean the Winter Olympics does not generate much interest. However in recent years it would have interest some in the Caribbean because of the exploits of the Jamaican National Bobsled Team at 1988 Winter Olympics.
Those following the 2010 Winter Olympics would have been entertained by the exploits of speed skating champion Shani Davis. In a sport which has been highlighted by White dominance in its history the Black Davis has won 2 Golds and a Silver to date at the 2010 Winter Olympics. He is considered the most elegant American speed skater according to Wikipedia. Unfortunately the many achievements to date of Black speed skater Shani Davis remain hidden from Barbadians because we have a leading media house which severed its full sports department and the others are contented to regurgitate what is popular to others. Hopefully the visibility which Davis is currently getting will get some proper coverage from the local media and serve as inspiration to others that anybody can achieve who has the desire.
In Barbados we have always been partial to measuring success mainly on the basis of academic achievements. The current debate on the quality of our academics and the achievements of Ambassador Ryan Brathwaite on the world stage may drive our leaders to understand the importance of creating opportunities for our young people to excel in sports.
Interestingly the 2010 Winter Olympics has revealed some other Blacks who are doing the race proud in the month of February along with others in Canada:
Designer Adrian Aitcheson has dressed celebs– now he’s dressing Olympians.
- Shelley-Ann Brown selected to 2010 Canadian Olympic bobsleigh team
- Lascelles Brown AKA King (born October 12, 1974) is a Jamaican-born Canadian bobsledder who has competed since 1999.
- Neville Wright is the Canadians Olympic Bobsleigh Brakeman and sprinter.
- NHL star player Georges Laraque, who is very involved in a number of causes including the relief effort in Haiti and animal welfare, has officially joined the ranks of the Green Party of Canada.
The Black race must not become distracted by the Tigers of this world. We have so many other Black brothers and Sisters who continue to make the race proud, we have to highlight it and talk about it at every opportunity. Others would want to portray us as lazy and beast-like but we know better. Be proud people, we have built societies envied by others in the past and we can continue to do so in the future.