By: David Matousek
Walking into the locker room for the first time, Jackie respectfully introduced himself to his new teammates. No one responded. The room was dead silent except for the whispers in the corner. Eyes of his fellow teammates glared at him as he prepares for the game. On top of his jersey lies several written letters. The letters contained threats to both Jackie and his family. Jackie’s hands began to shake and sweat intensively. His face turned to nothing and fear filled his eyes. With his head down, Jackie grabs his glove and bat and slowly walks out to the field. The fans immediately began to boo Jackie. During each at bat Jackie could barely grip the bat with the fans taunting and screaming racist comments to him. Jackie finished the game going 0 for 3. This was not an impressive start. Jackie was given a second chance when he started the next game. This time Jackie was focused and ready to play. Like last time he received multiple threat letters. He simply threw them in the trash and hit the field. Fans were furious to see that Jackie was starting again. The stadium was roaring with racial comments when he came out of the dugout. This time the yelling did not affect Jackie. With determination he blocked out everything going on except his main objective, which was, to play baseball. So with a smile on Jackie’s face he finished the game going 3 for 4 with 2 stolen bases. Jackie Robinson was a hero. Jackie faced severe obstacles and inspired others with his grace under pressure. Jackie’s grace under pressure inspired thousands of African-American men and women living in America by putting the prejudice and racial strife aside, and showed everyone what a talented player he was. Jackie Robinson inspired his people because he showed them that he could put aside the racial aspect and focus on the game. The courage Jackie Robinson had was unbelievable. Throughout his career fans threatened to kill him and his family unless he quit. This frightened Jackie the most because he did not want to be responsible for any of his family members getting hurt. Everywhere Jackie went he was always very cautious and skeptical of what may happen. This created much stress for Jackie because he could not go anywhere without fear in his mind. After a week of being on the team Jackie was so terrified that he considered quitting. He thought to himself “Is this worth it?” He knew in the back of his mind that if he quit it would all go away. But with courage and determination Jackie inspired thousands of men and women because he never gave up and continued to play. Just about everywhere Jackie Robinson went he received racial comments from fans. Some fans would throw drinks and food at him. This would cause Jackie to tremble with anger but Jackie became excellent at tolerating their behavior. So many times Jackie wanted to hit one the fans but, no matter how mad they made Jackie, he never once responded with violence. Baseball is an extremely mental sport and they say hitting a baseball from a major league pitcher is the hardest thing to accomplish among sports. With that in mind, it is incredible that Jackie had the ability to block out all of the racist remarks and still be able to focus enough to hit a baseball. Jackie’s composure to not fight back inspired many people. Jackie Robinson was not only discriminated against from the fans but also his teammates. Many of the teammates did not like the idea of a black player on their team so these players made it tough on Jackie. Some team members created a petition to stop Robinson from joining the team, but failed when Dodger manager Leo Durocher learned about it. (Brandon) Most of Jackie’s teammates showed him no respect and some would not even look him in the eyes. For example, Jackie’s first homerun gave the Dodgers the lead in the top of the 9th and when Jackie got back to the dugout he only received appreciation...
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