Friday, October 6, 2017 at 1:00 PM – KHSU Humboldt Magazine Segment: 2017: Puerto Rico, Sport and Identity
Join Doc and host Danielle Orr for for their monthly feature on sport from the Americas and Caribbean and their connection to popular culture and politics.
The recent events in Puerto Rico with the devastation wrought by Hurricane Maria has been a major news story with complex humanitarian and political overtones. Puerto Ricans are American citizens, yet it has its own Olympic team and marches under the Puerto Rican flag. United States citizens in Puerto Rico and citizens on the American mainland differ in their opinions as to whether Puerto Rico should be a state, an independent country, or remain in its status as a United States territory.
And, as always, the intersection of sport and politics can be a fascinating illumination into many of these complex issues.
Puerto Rican players make up the fourth largest Latino group in Major League Baseball after the Dominican Republic, Venezuela and Cuba. Puerto Rico has four players in the Baseball Hall of Fame, and there are five Puerto Ricans currently in the National Basketball Association (12 in its history). Puerto Rico’s defeat of the United States in the 2004 Olympic Games in basketball is considered one of the great upsets in the Olympic Games history and a source of great pride for Puerto Rico. And, Puerto Rico produced some of boxing’s great champions.
We’ll talk about these issues today as well as the single finest example of an athlete who set the bar at the highest level in transcending sport – Puerto Rico’s Hall of Fame baseball player Roberto Clemente, who paid the ultimate price on behalf of the world community without borders almost a half a century ago.