Dear Athletes, Coaches, and Officials,
Like so many of you, my family and I are shocked by recent events. The images we have seen have horrified us and broken our hearts. We are ashamed of the injustices perpetrated in our country against people of color and dismayed by discrimination and harassment committed by some of the people who swore to protect us.
These strange times are flashing a spotlight on how unevenly opportunities are distributed across our society, and on the many issues of prejudice and racism. As an athletic community built on the bedrock values of openness, inclusion, and fair play, we must ensure that these events’ forces propel us forward. Never backward.
Words are important; words matter. Our expressions of support and shared pain are not enough. While the challenges are enormous, that does not absolve us from taking whatever steps we can to work against systemic racism and structural inequalities. As athletes, coaches and officials, we can and must educate ourselves and others, and act through our community engagements, to stand up for the oppressed or marginalized and work to ensure that our entire society does better.
Rok Sribar, Ph.D.
ACA General Manager High-Performance Programs