Thursday, October 21, 2021

Captain Amazon Stout On Race Relations & The World Cup

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There’s a scene at the end of Mat Roos’ play, “Inherit the Wind” at The Crucible’s summer residence, the Denver Rodeo Theater, in which Gerald McCormick, head of the publicly funded National Institute of Civil Rights (NICR), goes before the House Judiciary Committee and fields questions from legislators about the passage of the Civil Rights Act. Speaker of the House Joe Martin grills McCormick about the censorship in the face of racism in Southern schools. A white scholar, representing the NAACP, attempts to discredit the NICR’s role in enforcing integration at the schools.

Roos’ play cuts between three perspectives – those of Frederick Douglass, John Lewis, and Ike Barksdale, respectively. There are scenes between McCormick and Martin, Lewis and Major Howard Griffiths, and Barksdale and the four students involved in the desegregation of their high school, West Point Preparatory. Reading a piece on Reuters about the race relations in German before the 2018 US-Germany World Cup game.

Right before the USA-Soccer match against Germany in which the Germans trounced the Americans 4-0, I tell Captain, one of the players on the USA squad, that I see the gray hair on the retired gentleman sitting beside me – he’s sitting in the Den of the Whispers.

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