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Mike Gastineau’s blog

Confronting What Makes Us Uncomfortable

There I was the black grandson of a slave, the son of a black sharecropper, part of a historic occasion, and a symbolic hero to my people.

The air was sparkling. The sunlight was warm. The band struck up the national anthem. The flag billowed in the wind. It should have been a glorious moment for me as the stirring words of the national anthem poured from the stands. Perhaps it was, but then again perhaps the anthem could be called the theme song for a drama called The Noble Experiment.

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Ernie Banks

There might not be a better example of the Dreams Fulfilled idea than Ernie Banks. He came of age right as Jackie Robinson was breaking the color barrier and says that event inspired him. But there was still a lag time between Robinson playing for the Dodgers and other teams following suit so Banks had to go what was at the time the traditional route for a black ball player.

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Negro Leagues Ghosts Can Still Visit Some of Their Old Homes

Obviously, it’s a good thing that baseball long ago became a sport that anyone with the ability to do so can play at the highest level regardless of the color of their skin. But the fact is that for many years many good ballplayers were not allowed in Major League Baseball and thus had to show their skills in the Negro Leagues. The stories of those players and their achievements are worth telling. That can be tough to do with the limited amout of information and eyewitnesses.

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