Last summer, the big swim news headline was the Valley Club of Philadelphia
kicking black kids out. This summer, it was the group of Shreveport
kids who drowned in a public park.
One was about denying access to swimming; the other was the fruit of lack of access.
The Philadelphia incident had several outcomes, including financial retribution, and a generous gift from Tyler Perry. I don't recall reading about swim lessons coming out of the deal.
I'm hoping that something good will come of the Shreveport tragedy, and this article
adds to my hope. Besides the most comprehensive analysis I've read on the subject of Blacks and non-swimming, it says that there is a new swimming program in Shreveport named after the victims. Bishop Larry Brandon, a local pastor, has even begun stressing the importance of swimming from the pulpit. That's a far cry from some of the jokes I've heard from my pastor
and his wife
I think an event like this should shame our people into making learning to swim a priority. Cullen Jones hopes swimming will become as commonplace as drivers licenses. I concur.
cross posted at www.imswimming.net