[Dear Mr. President: On April 15-17th in Newport Beach, California, American tennis professional competed against all-white South African players …]

by Jewell Handy Gresham, Coalition of Concerned Black Americans
New York, New York, United States
April 19, 1977
1 page
Type: Correspondence
Coverage in Africa: South Africa
Coverage outside Africa: United States
Language: English
Copy of a letter to President Jimmy Carter. The letter says on April 15-17th in Newport Beach, California, American tennis professionals competed against all-white South African players in defiance of repeated UN resolutions against sports exchange with the racist Pretoria regime; for reasons set forth in the enclosed newsletter (CCBA Questioner) directed to organizations and individuals in the Black community, and is a detailed letter directed to Secretary of State Cyrus Vance, the American Black community will vigorously resist any effort to put forth by tennis and allied interests to assist South African athletes in gaining respectability in our country; please note the legal questions which we believe to be attendant upon this matter as outlined in out letter to Attorney-General Griffin Bell. The letter says this issue gravely threatens both our domestic tranquility and our image abroad; if the present course of action continues, we have no doubt that it will adversely affect current and future possibilities for hundreds of amateur American athletes to be in honorable competition with their counterparts in Black and Brown Africa. The letter says we urgently solicit your attention to this matter, the more so as any concern expressed by you in your campaign for worldwide human rights can only be regarded with skepticism--and finally ridicule--if Americans are seen to openly collaborate in sports, or otherwise, with the most ruthless racist and genocidal country on the face of the earth. Copies of the letter were sent to Vice-President Mondale; Secretary of State Cyrus Vance; UN Ambassador Andrew Young; Senator Dick Clark, Senate Foreign Relations Committee; Congressman Charles Diggs, House Sub-Committee on Africa; and the Black Congressional Caucus.
Collection: Private collection of Robert Edgar