Taking a Knee, Taking a Stand: Resistance & Sports In the Age of Trump (February 17)

A Panel Discussion Featuring:
– Dave Zirin (Author and host of the Edge of Sports podcast)
– Shireen Ahmed (Tales From a Hijabi Footballer blog)
– Sexual Assault Resource Centre-Concordia University
– Rana Salah (Poet, anti-racist organizer, & board member of the Centre for Gender AdvocacyQpirg Concordia | GRIP Concordia)

** The event will be followed by a book signing session with Dave Zirin in the lobby of H110! The Concordia Community Solidarity Co-op Bookstore will be on hand selling copies of his books. **

Taking a Knee, Taking a Stand: Resistance & Sports In the Age of Trump
Friday, February 17th, 6:30pm
Concordia University, 1455 de Maisonneuve west, H-110
Free and open to the public
(This venue is wheelchair accessible // ASL interpretation will be available)
Colin Kaepernick’s now famous refusal to stand for the US national anthem has sparked a watershed moment in sports, both on and off the field. As protests against police brutality and racism have reached a fever pitch in the USA, more and more athletes are using their stature and fame to make their voices heard in the fight for justice.
Meanwhile, Donald Trump rose to power as President-elect amidst widespread allegations of sexual assault – instances he later dismissed as “locker-room talk”. What will challenging sexism and misogyny look like under a Trump presidency, and how can we acknowledge that the assault that Trump boasted of is indeed part of sports’ “locker-room talk”, while at the same time fighting against it? And how will the virulent Islamophobia that Trump represents impact Muslim athletes both on and off the field?
The playing fields of today are an incredibly rife terrain for contesting the ugliest of social injustices. Fans, players, and coaches are realizing that the stakes are high for activism in sports, and that oppression doesn’t stop once the players enter the arena. While sports wield an incredible power due to their profit generation and media omnipresence, fans and athletes are demanding a re-orientation of that power to serve a common social good. This can be evidenced in campaigns to change racist, anti-Indigenous mascots (Washington Redskins, Edmonton Eskimos), mobilizations against international sporting bodies such as the Olympics (Vancouver 2010) or FIFA (Brazil 2014), or efforts to compensate the victims of head concussions sustained in competition (notably in football and hockey).
Athlete activists of today are drawing inspiration from legends such as Mohammed Ali, Serena Williams, Roberto Clemente, and a seemingly endless list of others who refuse to simply “shut up and play”.
** Speaker Bios **
* Dave Zirin
Named one of UTNE Reader’s “50 Visionaries Who Are Changing Our World”, Dave Zirin writes about the politics of sports for the Nation Magazine. He is their first sports writer in 150 years of existence. He is, in addition, a columnist for SLAM Magazine and the Progressive, and a frequent guest on CBC’s Q sports panel.
Zirin hosts the popular weekly Edge of Sports Podcast. He also co-hosts the radio program “The Collision: Sports and Politics with Etan Thomas & Dave Zirin.”
* Shireen Ahmed
Shireen Ahmed is a writer, public speaker and Sports Activist focusing on Muslim women in Sports. She is an athlete, advocate, community organizer, and works with Youth of Colour on empowerment projects and is an avid sports coach and mentor. She is a regular contributor to Muslimah Media Watch, a Global Sports Correspondent for Safe World For Women and works on the Muslim Women in Sports website.
Shireen’s blog “Tales from a Hijabi Footballer”, where her passion for sport, politics and women’s issues collide, has been recognized by Sports Media for its candid discussions. She is currently working on her first book and drinks a lot of coffee. Shireen lives in Toronto, Canada with her family.
* Sexual Assault Resource Centre
The SARC provides confidential and non-judgmental support to Concordia University students, staff and faculty of all genders and orientations. Through education and awareness raising initiatives, the Sexual Assault Resource Centre is committed to working towards the prevention of sexual violence and harassment.
This event is made possible with the support of:
– Qpirg Concordia | GRIP Concordia
– Concordia Student Union | CSU | csu.qc.ca
-Concordia Council on Student Life
-Concordia Graduate Community Building Fund
-Concordia Communication Studies Department
– Centre for Gender Advocacy
– Women’s Studies Student Association – WSSA
– MSA Concordia
– Lovely Hockey League (LHL) of Montreal