Thursday, February 24, 2011 response

In the essay “Free Minds and Hearts at Work” by Jackie Robinson, he talks about the imperfection of life and there will always be a flaw in life and everyone. “And what is it that I have always believed? First, that imperfections are human.” “Handicaps, stumbling blocks, prejudices-all of these are imperfect.” Jackie Robinson is demonstrating through these examples how there are always going to be things and people that are imperfect in life and that people have to fight through some tough obstacles. “And I believe that society can remain good only as long as we are willing to fight for it-and to fight against whatever imperfections may exist.” He is trying to illustrate how there are always obstacles in your life that will prevent you from become perfect. He is also saying we have to fight against the imperfections and obstacles to try and make this a better place.

Jackie Robinson is like Peekay. They both go through hard times with prejudice. Jackie Robinson was going through prejudice because he was black. Even now when he is older he is the first black Major League Baseball player. “My fight was against the barriers that kept Negroes out of baseball. This was the area where I found imperfection, and where I was best able to fight.” His fight is to help all the other black people to realize they can also do a sport even though there aren’t a lot of people doing it. They may get judged and picked on but they are fighting against imperfection. Peekay is thought to be in the beginning of the book as a weak kid who can’t do anything to the older kids to get them back for bullying him. He also is hated for being a Boer by some kids. Peekay is fighting against racism, discrimination, and prejudice. When he boxes he wants to show how even though he is small and a Boer, he is able to do things better than other people as well and he does this by the power of one. “It was the power of one stirring in me. Nothing Lieutenant Smit said could dampen my spirits. I jumped down from the ring feeling ten feet tall.” He is fighting a guy that is bigger than him and he is small but he uses everything he has learned over the years and used it. Even though he showed them in that match how not to judge him by his size or race, people will still think differently of him than he should be.

This essay relates to my life because I am always judged for the way I look and act when they do not know how I am actually like. I am like Jackie Robinson in a way because when people look at him, they think of him as any ordinary black man. They have never even talked to him and seen him do what he likes. They don’t know how athletic he is and how great he is in baseball. This is like me in a way. When people see me, they think I am ordinary Asian. They imply I am smart at everything, I don’t play sports, and all I do is study. These people don’t even know what I like to do or what I am like. Jackie Robinson fights against this racism by showing the people that black people can be successful. I am currently trying to find what I am good at and help other people.

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