This film was directed by Darius Clark Monroe and produced by Spike Lee. It tells the story of a group of young college athletes from the Wyoming Cowboys Football Team that decided to wear black armbands protesting against Brigham Young University, a large Mormon University. Apparently these young men had experienced some racism during a prior game with the members of that team.
Mormons believe that blacks are cursed with the mark of Cain and refuse to accept them as full members in their congregations. The young African American men decided that they would not play against BYU’s team again. They became known as Black 14.
In so doing they risked their college education and possibly even their careers as professional football players to stand for what they believed to be fair and right. Their protest brought the full weight of the state down on their heads.
The players were fired for violating two of the coach’s strict rules: they took part in a student demonstration and formed a group or faction within the team. According to the coach, their action was detrimental to the team’s morale and his decision had nothing to do with the fact that they were Black. The administration, the students, and most of the state agreed with the coach’s decision.
Forty-eight years later, racial tension is still an ongoing issue. Watch this interesting short film now.
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