Life is not a spectator sport. If you’re going to spend your whole life in the grandstand just watching what goes on, in our opinion, you’re wasting your life.
There is no other way to talk about Jackie Robinson but respectfully, honoring the great man and athlete he was. We see him as a game changer – in sports as well as in social rights – and his legend deserves our tribute. This article is our way to remember him, without forcing any comparison between his life and the contemporary business world.
We just want to pay our respect by telling you his story, often unknown. We hope that you can take him as an example to face our daily challenges with the same energy and social responsibility. He made the world a better place, let’s try to do the same, improving our working environments and, on a bigger scale, everyone’s life.
This is the story of Jackie Robinson #42
Jack Roosevelt Robinson is one of the great personality of the XX century. Born in 1919 in Georgia, he moved with his family to Pasadena, California. He had a hard time as a teenager: growing up in residential Pepper street, the poor ghetto part of the city, wasn’t easy at all. This is the beginning of his legend, the moment he decided to change a world where people were still discriminated by the Colour of their skin.
As an Afro-American living in a difficult environment of racial segregation, Jackie found a shelter in sports. He was a curious person, passionate about football and baseball and in 1939 he was admitted to the prestigious UCLA. Despite his great scores and results, in 1942 he was drafted in the army, starting a military career that deeply marked him because of the racial abuses he experienced. During that period, one day, he had an argument on a bus and was punished with a racist sentence. That was the end of his career in the army.
If that world wasn’t ready for him, Baseball was: he received an offer from the Negro League (the only league for Afro-Americans). In 1947, after a short and not so lucky experience in minor leagues, he finally reached the major league, breaking that baseball color line by far imposed on black people.
At the age of 28, he became the first Afro-American player taking part to a professional championship of the major league of baseball. We can easily say that he changed the history of sports.
The promoter of this operation was Branch Rickey, general manager of Brooklyn Dodgers team, who decided to recruit him. Playing in front of almost 30.000 people, an Afro-American became the symbol of a rebellion that still today, step by step, brings millions of people all around the world to fight for their rights.
Jackie Robinson is now a sports icon and 50 years after his debut, no other player in any Major League team can wear a shirt with his number: number 42.
It’s not easy to talk about sports together with social rights and conflicts, that is why we think there is nothing else to add about this legendary player. He paved the way for many young people and he was the best example to show us all how rivals’ oppressions are just an obstacle to overcome, not an impossible limit.
Jackie Robinson never let anyone knock him down and he always fought for himself and for all.
Hooray for Jackie, hooray for sports.