View Full Version : America's darling?

Rising Sun*
08-22-2008, 08:29 AM
Which 1936 Berlin Olympics American athlete was feted by the German people, tolerated by Hitler, snubbed by the American people, and ignored by the American President?

[Degree of difficulty is below zero!]

08-22-2008, 08:32 AM
Jesse Owens?

Rising Sun*
08-22-2008, 08:54 AM
Jesse Owens?


Doesn't agree with the American / Allied propaganda about how the Nazis viewed and treated Negroes, does it?

Owens was treated better in Germany than most Negroes (Yeah, I know they're called African Americans under the current linguistic regime, but I'm using contemporary terms.) were in America at the time.

That great - and I mean that term seriously - anti-fascist Democratic President FDR never even acknowledged Owens' achievements during his term. That was left to Eisenhower more than a decade after the war finished, and two decades after Owens' victories.

Owens was severely shat upon in his day by America, despite the endless post-war pieces which make a big deal of how his performance at the Olympics supposedly upset Hitler and the Nazis and the supposedly rabidly Nazi German people.

Owens was just a precursor to Muhammad Ali who is said, when refusing to register for the draft to serve in Vietnam, to have said rightly 'No Viet Cong ever called me nigger.'

Much has been written about the fact that Hitler snubbed Owens by refusing to shake his hand. Later, Owens described the event somewhat differently.

Owens did not feel that he was badly treated by the Germans. He credited Lutz Long, a German, and one of his competitors in the Long Jump, with giving him information about the runway that helped Owens win that event.

Further, he explained Hitler's actions: At one of the early medal ceremonies Hitler was on hand and shook hands with the German medal winners, but not all the winners.

The Olympic committee thereupon decided that Chancellor Hitler should not discriminate. Hereafter, he could shake hands with all the winners or none. He chose to shake hands with no one.

Later, on the way to a medal ceremony, Owens passed Hitler's box seat. He said that the Chancellor rose and waved to him and he waved back. There was no snub, though the world press seized upon the event and distorted it, even to this day.

On the contrary, Owens felt that he had been snubbed by President Roosevelt. Roosevelt ignored his triumph. "Not even a telegram," Owens complained.

It was not until the Eisenhower administration that a U.S. President acknowledged Owens' feat.

Returning to the U.S., Owens was treated to a ticker-tape parade in his honor. However, he was forced to use the freight elevator at the Waldorf Astoria to get to the ballroom to attend a banquet in his honor, because of the hotel's "No Negroes" policy. http://www.mccookgazette.com/story/1448186.html