If there were no sports, I think the integration that occurred would have been way more painful. Because why would anybody want to go through that? Why would a Black parent want their child to be subjected to a bunch of white racist behavior? I mean, why would you ever do that? And I think it probably took incredible fortitude for a Black mother in particular to tell her child, “You’re going to be going to school with mostly White kids and they may not all be nice to you.” And you know, that just must have been incredible. It puts a lump in your throat to think about what that might have been like.
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