Insight News

Feb 09th

Jackie Robinson Essay Contest: How does the story of Jackie Robinson inspire you?

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hemetii si-asar apet 0668Editors note: In the Children's Theatre Company's play "Jackie and Me" by Steven Dietz adapted from the book by Dan Gutman, Joey Stoshack travels back in time to 1947 to meet baseball legend Jackie Robinson. The Children's Theatre Company launched an essay contest about the influence of Jackie Robinson in conjunction with the production of "Jackie and Me." The winning grand prize essay submitted below by Hemetii Si-Asar Apet.

Hi, my name is Hemetii Si-Asar Apet. I am seven years old. I love writing. It was hard thinking about what I would say, but easy writing it. I wanted to enter the essay contest because I've only gone to one Twins game, and I really wanted to learn more about Jackie Robinson.

I read the book called "Jackie and Me" by Dan Gutman. It took me about four, maybe five days to read it. It was a fiction story but it was about Jackie Robinson, who was a real person. I liked the story, but it made me feel bad about how the grownups were acting. I also thought they should have more control of themselves, because they were out of control. Like in the parts when they would hit the ball at Jackie's head, hoping they would hit him, but instead he would dodge it or hit it back with his bat. They (other ballplayers) sometimes tried to knock him off his feet, but he would pop right back up.

Jackie Robinson inspired me by making me try my best in everything I do like sports and school. He also inspired me by making me work hard, like in track. Last year was my first year in track and I made it to the Junior Olympics. It was hard work because we had to go to Houston, where the other children run track all year because they do not have the same seasons as us. So this made me work harder. Also in school I mostly get 100 percent on my spelling tests. When I don't, I tell myself I have to work harder. This is like how Jackie had to work harder at each game and he had to work harder to fit in. Like at my school there are only two girls in my class who are Black, but most of the school is white.

hemetii si-asar apet 0449I learned that Jackie Robinson showed bravery and courage by not fighting back on the field and by being in control of himself. He also showed courage and bravery by ignoring threats, like, "We already got rid of several like you. One was found in the river just recently."

In the book, they said that everyday, people would write threatening notes saying they would kill him and his family. Jackie Robinson also showed justice by being fair. He even loved the people that hated him. He was like the Rev. Martin Luther King, Jr. who was a leader and helped the country by fighting racism with his words and not his body. That's why he's (Robinson) just like Martin Luther King (Jr.) because he helped to have Black people play baseball and inspire them to play.

I recommend this book and Jackie Robinson's story to be inspiring to those who love history, baseball, and our ancestors. Also because he was a really important man because he broke the color barrier for Black people to play baseball and other sports like track, soccer, or gymnastics.

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