Green Bay Packers players discuss challenges based on race
Thursday, March 4, 2010
Green Bay Press Gazette


Past and present Green Bay Packers' players talked
about the early challenges faced by athletes of color
on Thursday night at the fourth annual Black History
Month panel discussion.

"If you don't learn from history, if you don't study it,
if you don't fully understand it, you're bound to
become a victim to history," said former Packers
linebacker Dave Robinson.

Defensive lineman Willie Davis and all-time leading
rusher Ahman Green joined him on the panel at the
Lambeau Field Atrium. Robinson led the discussion
and his fun anecdotes on handling discrimination
drew laughs from the nearly 175 people who
attended.

He and Davis also shared their struggles playing for
a city that embraced them for what they did, not for
who they were.

"It wasn't that they (Green Bay) didn't like blacks,
they didn't know blacks," Robinson said.

The civil rights movement helped, but racism still
exists, he added.

In spite of the difficulties, Davis said playing 10
seasons for the Packers were the best years of his
life. Green said both men are examples of what can
be done in the face of adversity, and that young
people can no longer use racism as a crutch.

"The fear is where the ignorance comes from.
Something like this opens people's eyes," he said.

Robinson said at the end of the day, everyone is the
same.

"I give my blood away every month. One of you guys
may have a drop of black blood in you."

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