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The Color Of The 2018 Winter Olympics By Mark Hollis

During the recent Winter Olympics Games in Peyongchoang-Gum, South Korea, I was amazed at the diversity displayed by Team USA. It has long been realized that the competition has always been predominately white for the US team. But the Winter Games of 2018 was different. There were black athletes in several categories that had not existed before, with two winning the silver medal. Here is a list of Black American’s that participated and their respective area of competition:

Elena Meyers Taylor, Silver Medalist (Bobsled); Lauren Gibbs, Silver Medalist (Bobsled); Aja Evans (Bobsled); Hakeem Abdul Saboor (Bobsled); Chris McKinney (Bobsled); Briauna Jones (Bobsled); Shani Davis (Speed Skating); Erin Jackson (Speed Skating); Maame Biney (Speed Skating); Kimono Griffin (Speed Skating); Jordan Greenway (Hockey)

I am encouraged with the faces of color put forth by the United States Olympic Committee. It appears that the selection process of Team USA was fair and balanced. The one negative I would like to voice is the selection of the opening ceremony flag bearer. Apparently, there was a tie as to who would carry the flag between two-time Olympic gold medal winner Shani Davis and Luger participant and Bronze medal winner Erin Hamlin. Hamlin received the nod, which resulted in a coin flip and did not sit well with Davis. Personally, given the contributions to the sport of Speed Skating and his commitment to participate for the US team, should have been enough to select Shani. Not to mention February being Black History Month. A remedy would have been to have Shani bear the flag at the closing ceremony.

On a positive note, I look forward to the 2022 Winter Olympic Games and anticipate a more diverse display of athletes for team USA.