It was early evening when the athletes returned to the infield. After they received their medals, they turned to face their country’s flags, as they were raised in their honor. Then, as the first bars of “The Star-Spangled Banner” reverberated around the stadium, Smith raised his gloved right fist into the air. An instant later, Carlos raised his left fist; it too had a black glove. They stayed in that position, heads bowed, for 72 seconds, until the music stopped. Standing to attention beside them, Norman joined their protest by wearing a white and green protest button that announced: “Olympic Project for Human Rights.” As the music stopped, Americans in the audience started to jeer and spew racist slurs at Smith and Carlos.
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