Americans Call for Continued Suspension of South Africa from Olympic Games

by American Committee on Africa
New York, New York, United States
May 8, 1966
1 page
Type: Press Release
Coverage in Africa: South Africa
Coverage outside Africa: United States
Language: English
The press release announces a letter from 30 prominent Americans to Mr. Douglas F. Roby, President of the U.S. Olympic Committee, asking that the Committee commit itself to preventing South African participation in the 1968 Olympic Games in Mexico. The letter, originally sponsored by Jackie Robinson, was also signed by other sportsmen, including Arthur Ashe of the U.S. Davis Cup Tennis Team, former baseball great Roy Campanella, Oscar Robertson of the Cincinnati Royals, and Buddy Young of the National Football League. Other signatories were: I.W. Abel, President of the United Steel Workers and Cleveland Robinson, National President of the Negro American Labor Council; Floyd McKissick and Bayard Rustin of the civil rights movement; William Booth, New York City Commissioner on Human Rights and Manhattan Borough President, Percy Sutton; editor Allan Morrison; Monseignor Thomas J. Carey of Newark and the renowned theologian Reinhold Niebuhr; and numerous individuals associated with the arts including Theodore Bikel, Ruby Dee, John Forsythe, Julie Harris, Peter Seeger, Ed Sullivan and Eli Wallach. The letter cites numerous examples of South Africa's discrimination in sports and the contradiction between this situation and the Constitution of the Internationa1 Amateur Athletic Federation. It states that the U.S. Committee must not allow a racialist team such as South Africa's back into the Olympics, from which it was expelled in 1964.
Used by permission Africa Action (successor to the American Committee on Africa).
Collection: George M. Houser (Africa collection), Michigan State University Libraries Special Collections