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 It's being said that high profile Simone Biles is who is inspiring the increased interest in gymnastics by black girls most of whom weren't even born during Dominique Dawes' heyday, or were too young to follow Gabby's career.  it's also being noted that white girls seem to be losing interest in this sport. 

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As a former gymnast i can tell you there were plenty of inspired  Black female gymnasts. Inspiration comes from all levels not just the highest.

Our biggest disadvantage is lack of access. I was a D1 gymnast at Syracuse University. I did not start doing gymnastics until i was in high school — unless you count flipping on discarded mattresses. All of my team mates were already accomplished gymnasts by the time i got started. 

there was so so much talent in the ghetto that never realized their potential.   

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On 8/25/2022 at 9:00 PM, Cynique said:

Has black access to gymnastics improved greatly for black girls?


Yes it has, but access is still lacking.

When i was a kid many schools had gymnastics teams. Today there are far fewer programs. I’d be surprised if there  are any girls gymnastics teams in the New York City public schools.


NYC Pools used to have diving boards and you could find trampolines at your local boys club all of these are gone today. 


 Now in the more upscale areas you’ll find many private programs, but these take money, time, and resources many Black families don’t have. My family never paid for a single gymnastics lesson. My teammates in college went to summer camps for gymnastics that was something unfathomable to me.


 It is harder for girls. Title IX basically cut men gymnastics programs rather that creating programs for women. Syracuse Eliminated men’s gymnastics and never had a woman’s team (as far as i know)


On 8/25/2022 at 9:53 PM, Delano said:

Why do you suppose it is that way.

the same reason ghettos lack all kinds of resources, Structural racism.


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On 8/27/2022 at 4:07 AM, Delano said:

What is the goal or purpose of structural racism?

To continue to enrich those that benefit from the system.



@daniellegfny i remember Dominque 🙂

interestingly i drew inspiration from the best gymnasts regardless of there so called race. They could be Russian or Japanese it did not really matter i had a poster of Japanese dude on my wall for years as a teenager. This was before Americans were very competitive before Kurt Thomas and them…


 there was a brother from the Bronx Mario Mecuteon (sp?) he would have been an Olympian but Carter boycotted that one — a great gymnast i have no idea what happened to him after that… 



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Troy's statement about untapped talent in the ghetto applies not only to gymnastics but to everything. In the inner city, schools are poorer, jobs are scarce, infrastructure is poor, and this was all structured by design in the days of segregation. Since I taught school in such an area I became aware of this in ways that I hadn't learned simply from the ambient progressive information.


One could see this globally. Wherever people are poor and kept down (and I firmly believe poverty is entirely a creation of the rich, of the system. The poor themselves do not create it.) their potential is truncated. How much talent is lost in the Mayan community where 4-yr-olds work all day to pick coffee beans. yet the workers are so poor they can't afford to drink coffee?


Back to my school... the neighborhood streets run by a gang, poverty and dysfunction rampant, cops who behave like an occupying army. I had 2 kids in my class who were notable, one black and one Mexican, both were geniuses. The black boy, I once said to him, "Look, you make noise all day and refuse to cooperate yet I know very well that you are smart enough that we could put you in high school and you'd be able to do well (this was a 4th grader). You could do very well academically. why not do it?"


He grabbed a book, opened it to a page, scanned the page for about 2 seconds, closed the book and gave me a synopsis of what the page said that was as good as any teacher could do. "Damn!" I said, whoops, bad word, but, "Damn, see what I mean? You could fly through high school and college, you're very intelligent." "Yeah who cares," he responded, "already I'm making more money than you make." Of course that path leads to a bullet or a jail cell, I pointed out. He didn't care.


The Mexican kid could remember everything ever said in class. I could ask him a question about what I'd taught last week and he remembered every word. I would say to him, "What's 49 times 148?" And he'd tell me the answer before my calculator could. Well, I did home visits at that school, which no teachers do any more, and certainly not in S. Central L.A., but I did since I'd made friends with the gang and had "protection". This kid's house... his mother was in the back room shooting up. The baby was crawling around wailing with about 3 poops in the diaper. The house smelled of urine and beer. The father was in the front yard in a van selling drugs.


Now,, let's guess where these 2 ended up. I don't know, but the odds were that they did not do well. THAT is lost talent, lost potential, lost lives in action and 100% due to the lousy environment which was CREATED for them by those in power.


I had a professor in grad school at UCLA who'd studied how the S. Central ghetto was created. He traced everything, and the answer? BY DESIGN, by collaboration between politicians, landowners, store owners... red-lining, oh yes, and realtors---homeowner covenants stipulating that when you sell the house, the buyer must be white.


How much talent was lost to the USA during Jim Crow days? How many janitors could have been nuclear scientists or great artists? How many potential community leaders are lost to gangbanging and to the victimization which occurs inevitably simply by living in the inner city?


Some love to say, "Anyone can make it, it's all up to the individual, nobody is stopping you." Sorry, but the system is stopping people. One's environment does have an effect on one's outcome.


I had a friend in Pittsburgh who was descended from slaves which had been owned by my great-great-grandfather in what is now West Virginia, then Virginia. He lived in Homewood (ghetto), his father could never find a good job, sometimes they were hungry, his school was bad, they had only the bare minimum of comforts in their house. I grew up in the suburbs, my dad though a poor hillbilly originally got the GI Bill and went to the university which would not accept blacks at that time, ended up with a white-collar job, we had lots of food, new clothes, books, toys, piano lessons...


Walking around the Univ. of Pittsburgh area whites in the street (this was in the 70s) would actually give me CRAP for being with a black person. I once said, "Damn, is it like this all the time?" and he said, "Welcome to our world." I was looking for an apt around Pitt and the landlord while showing the place assured me he wouldn't rent to blacks, so "this place is clean". Must I go on? Once I was there observing, I perceived this racism at every turn, simply by keeping my eyes open. By the way, a realtor in Los Angeles once assured me that I needn't worry, because he wouldn't "rent to Mexicans".


This all sounds "systemic" and "institutionalized" to me...

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On 8/27/2022 at 6:41 AM, daniellegfny said:

Dominique Dawes!!!

Why is everybody so eager to leap frog over Simone Biles and  credit  the success of her 3 contemporary champions to a 45-year- old Domnique Dawes?  It's like saying black girls aspiring to become pro tennis players  are inspired by the late Althea Gibson instead of Serena Williams.


Yes, Dominique  and Gabby have earned their place in the annals of women's gymnastics but it is more accurate to credit them with being Simone's inspiration. 


The torch is passed from one champion to another. 

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22 hours ago, Delano said:

So how do you see this playing out or ending.


Until ultimately it will end.  Oppression by one group of another always ends... it is really just a matter of how much damage is done first.


@Michel Montvert thanks for sharing those stories.  The cure for cancer may have died in some ghetto -- you can pick the country.


@Cynique Simone is the GOAT.  Anyone obliquely familiar with the sport knows this. 


I can't speak for the others, but I know inspiration comes from many sources not just the GOAT. This piqued my interest because I was involved in the sport, one in which there are not many Black participants, for all the reasons mentioned.

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6 hours ago, daniellegfny said:

Dominque isn’t a quitter like Simone. 

Was Dominique ever molested by her coach or expected to perform under physical duress or subjected to the  pressure of being the GOAT.  I'm curious about whether she broke any records?

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They already HAVE the cure for cancer.


Infact, there are SEVERAL cures for cancer which have been routinely demonstrated for decades.
They are just suppressed and kept in certain circles secret from the public in general.


One group keeps it a secret so they can make money off of just treating it instead of actually curing it.

Another group keeps it a secret to protect it, so that the first group doesn't come and try to dismantle or destroy it or "out law" it once it has been made public.


One of the things I've noticed over the years about people in power whether in government or at a job....they love making rules.

They tend to love RESTRICTING and BANNING things that they personally don't agree with even if it doesn't disrupt the operation.


On jobs, if I find a way to make it easier for me to do a job while maintaining the same quality of it....I often keep that discovery to myself and be sure NOT to tell any supervisors or managers.  Many of them have a tendency to automatically want to tell you "NO...you can't do it that way"  Even if it's not against the rules.
And if you insist on doing it then they'll try to MAKE A RULE saying you can't do it.


But if they don't know about it....they can't make it illegal.



Man stress Stock Photos, Royalty Free Man stress Images | Depositphotos

"Ok...HOW...is this guy getting so many sales??
He's gotta be doing something wrong.
I'm gonna find out what it is that's he's doing because I'm sure he's breaking the rules"


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On 8/27/2022 at 12:07 AM, Delano said:

What is the goal or purpose of structural racism?

The original intent was to keep the working class from developing solidarity, by separating "white" from "black". Also, this separation facilitated the maintenance of the "blacks" in slavery, which gets to the ultimate purpose, to maintain an easily-exploitable pool of cheap labor. This whole system ends up keeping the white working class down as well, but it isn't designed and maintained by the working class, but by the whites in power. The black working class and the white working class both are thereby duped and exploited.


I make this argument not to suggest that whites have it just as bad as blacks, which they generally do not, but to advocate for SOLIDARITY which would cut through the con game.

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Michel Montvert

Lol, I personally wouldn't mind if you DID suggest that working class Whites had it harder than working class Blacks.
I'm IN the working class and most of the service jobs I've been on, the White employees tend to work harder than the AfroAmericans on average and show more dedication to the job.
Whether we're talking about scrubbing floors, flipping burgers, construction, cashiering, ect....I've seen it so many times.

However when I study the psychology behind this, I realize that poor and working class Whites often see themselves as the "overseers" or outter-ring "gate keepers" to the White racist system.  They feel it's their duty to maintain the system even at THEIR OWN PERSONAL expense.

Unlike most AfroAmerican workers, most working class Whites don't mind sacrificing their time, energy, and even health in order to maintain "the system".
So in that sense, they often WILL have a harder time in life but that struggle is somewhat voluntary as they see themselves as sacrificial pawns.

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