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anti-racism | human & civil rights

John Carlos & Dave Zirin

John Carlos and Dave Zirin. Friday, November 4th, 6pm. Hoffman Hall, Portland State University
The International Socialist Organization and Haymarket Books present a special event with Olympic track-and-field medalist John Carlos, whose courageous stand during the medal ceremony at the 1968 Olympics remains one of the most iconic images in sports history and the history of the civil rights movement. This will be an exciting and engaging event, and an inspiring opportunity for athletes, students, and all others engaged in the struggles of today to come together to discuss with an Olympic legend the relationship between athletics and civic engagement, and to hear the inspiring story of an athlete who sacrificed fame and glory to stand up for a principle, whose actions have been vindicated by history.

Seen around the world, John Carlos and Tommie Smith's Black Power salute on the 1968 Olympic podium sparked controversy and career fallout. Yet their show of defiance remains one of the most iconic images of Olympic history and the Black Power movement. Here is the remarkable story of one of the men behind the salute, lifelong activist, John Carlos.

Named of the UTNE Reader's "50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Our World", Dave Zirin writes about the politics of sports for the Nation Magazine. He is their first sports writer in 150 years of existence. Winner of Sport in Society and Northeastern University School of Journalism's 2011 'Excellence in Sports Journalism' Award, Zirin is also the host of the popular weekly show, Edge of Sports Radio. He has been called "the best sportswriter in the United States," by Robert Lipsyte. Dave Zirin is, in addition, a columnist for SLAM Magazine and the Progressive.

"John Carlos is an American hero. And finally he has written a memoir to tell us his story�and a powerful story it is. I couldn't put this book down."?
--Michael Moore

"Biblically, athletes with superior attributes were seen as gifts from God. Whether it was Samson staring down the Philistines or David slaying Goliath, they and latter-day heroes such as Joe Louis, Jackie Robinson and Muhammad Ali, selflessly used their gifts and magnificently magnified platforms to transform society. It is in that tradition that John Carlos, and his teammate Tommie Smith, raised their fists in solidarity with the American civil rights struggle, as well as the struggles of those who exist on the downside of advantage. It was a statement for the ages. This act of righteous defiance lifted us all to a new level of dignity and shared responsibility to improve the conditions of the poor the world over...But the price of heroism is high. John Carlos paid and this is his story."
--Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr.

"The John Carlos Story is a blow by blow detail of triumph vs tragedy from the jump. Again Dave Zirin uncovers, and yet illuminates the mere footnotes of this sports history hero with his impeccable balance of truth. This story drills a hole into the myth of black athlete success and worship."?
--Chuck D, Public Enemy