Jackie Robinson





Jackie Robinson

Jackie Robinson’s play on the field endeared him to many people across the nation. His abilities and talents proved to be instrumental in changing people’s perspective concerning race. For the first time, many Americans realized that blacks were capable of doing the same things they did if they were given an opportunity. People viewed his success differently. They were concerned because for the first time, a black man was able to play baseball, a game that was largely considered white. Robinson managed to gain great fame in the country because of his talent. He helped his team win the national league pennant during his first year. The team proceeded to win the national series in 1955. In addition, he was named the first Rookie of the year and the most valuable player for the national league. However, his play alone was not sufficient to break the color lines.

Robinson was a great inspiration for many people, especially the blacks living in America at the time. Many people who were involved in the civil rights movement viewed his success as a source of inspiration to fight for equality. He was the first black person to play baseball in the major leagues. Robinson began playing for the Dodgers in 1947. However, there was no legislation following his signing and his success in the field, which indicated that he was championing the fight for equal representation of blacks. During his time with the dodgers, he had faced all manner of insults and abuse. He faced discrimination in and off the field. This was despite the fact that he had broken the color lines in baseball. He had managed to show the world that a black player was just as good and as talented as the others were. After Dodgers signed him, other black players got the chance to play in major league baseball.

Robinson was one of the major symbols of the civil rights movement. His talent, fame, and success did not prevent him from facing discrimination. When he retired from the team, he could not succeed in getting coaching positions in the major leagues because of his skin color. Robinson had succeeded in letting the world know that black men would play baseball. However, following the discrimination that he received later, it was clear that he did not succeed in breaking the color lines because of his talent. Black civil rights activists viewed him as a source of inspiration. To them, he was a symbol of fight against discrimination. They could use his life story as an illustration to the rest of the country.

Robinson was a hero to those who supported the civil rights movement. He inspired them in many ways. During his time at the Dodgers, Robinson had mostly faced racial abuse and discrimination without any form of retaliation. He was silent as baseball fans, his teammates, and other baseball players insulted him, threatened him with warning letters, and even refused to work with him. His silence characterized the form that the civil rights movement would take several years later. Many of the people chose peaceful demonstrations over violence. This was despite the fact that black people were lynched, tortured, and killed in other ways during the time. Robinson was a symbol of the power of silence and long-suffering. This appealed to both white and black supporters of the civil rights.

Robinson inspired other black people to believe and hope for a better future. He had shown the way to success and he hoped that others would follow. His life signified that the people would overcome the limitations they faced despite the obvious challenges that they were facing. All they needed was an opportunity and someone to believe in them. The Dodgers manager had believed in Robinson and he had given him an opportunity. However, Robinson’s success was purely because of the hard work he put in on the field. The black people wanted the same chances of success. They wanted an end to discriminatory practices. The segregation laws, which emphasized separate but equal did not give the black people the same opportunities. It limited them in many ways because they had to use inferior and inadequate resources. Robinson proved to the people that they could do more.

Had Robinson’s success in the field been the main cause of breaking the color lines, many black people would have joined the major leagues sooner. White people would have been convinced that blacks deserved the same level of treatment they did, and Robinson would not have struggled to find a managing or coaching job after his time in the league. Discrimination based on race would have ended. However, this was hardly the case. However, Robinson’s success contributed to inspiring the supporters of the civil rights. He was a symbol of success and this helped in breaking the color lines. He managed to inspire people and raise hope within them. The people believed that they could do better and they fought for their rights. In the end, they were able to realize the freedom that they had desired for such a long time. They could not have managed to do this if they did not have a source of inspiration and hope.


Work Cited:

Zeiler, Thomas W. Jackie Robinson, and Race in America: A Brief History with Documents. Bedford/St. Martin’s, 2013. Print


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