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( J.R.H. 69)

Offered by: Representatives Howrigan of Fairfield, Alberico of Rutland City, Allard of St. Albans Town, Blanchard of Essex, Brooks of Montpelier, Cillo of Hardwick, Flaherty of South Burlington, Fox of Essex, Fyfe of Newport City, Gretkowski of Burlington, Metzger of Milton, Morrissey of Bennington, Parizo of Essex, Seibert of Norwich, Starr of Troy, Sullivan of Burlington, Vinton of Colchester, Waite of Pawlet and Westman of Cambridge.

Whereas, for far too many decades, the professional sporting opportunities open to African-American athletes were almost exclusively limited to race based leagues and tournaments, and

Whereas, significant step towards integrating American professional athletic competition occurred on April 15, 1947, when Jackie Robinson stepped to the plate as a member of the Brooklyn Dodgers and began his triumphant march into the Baseball Hall of Fame, and

Whereas, despite his baseball prowess, Jackie Robinson was forced to endure repeated humiliation and discrimination on account of his race, and

Whereas, his courage and fortitude earned him the respect and admiration of millions of Americans, and

Whereas, while major league baseball began the process of racial integration in 1947, the Professional Golfers’ Association Tour remained largely bereft of African-American golfers for much of the past half century, and

Whereas, an amazing and gallant 21-year old African-American golfer named Tiger Woods enthralled the nation on Sunday, April 13, 1997, by capturing the Master’s Tournament championship in Augusta, Georgia, and

Whereas, in accomplishing this feat, he became this prestigious tournament’s youngest victor and captured the title with the largest margin of victory and lowest number of strokes in its history, and

Whereas, Tiger Woods’ victory on a course, and in a tournament that was amongst the most avowedly segregationist on the PGA Tour, serves as a magnificent commemoration of the 50th anniversary of Jackie Robinson’s breaking of major league baseball’s racialbarrier, now therefore be it

Resolved by the Senate and House of Representatives:

That the Vermont General Assembly is pleased to join in the national celebration of the stunning victory of Tiger Woods on the golf links that occurred nearly 50 years to the day of Jackie Robinson’s first at bat at Ebbetts Field, and be it further

Resolved: That the Secretary of State be directed to send a copy of this resolution to Jackie Robinson’s widow, Rachel Robinson and to Tiger Woods.