The Sports Authority Rips The Green Magazine From Its Shelves

By Off The BASN Sports Wire
Updated: February 21, 2006

NEW YORK — The Green Magazine recently learned that the management of the Sports Authority retail stores issued a nationwide directive to destroy all copies of the February/March issues because of customer complaints about the cover image.

The issue, which celebrates African American and Women’s history, has a cover image of a 1784 sign advertising “NEGROES FOR SALE.”

An Arizona-based Sports Authority employee, who noticed the magazine because of the email from his superiors, contacted the TGM offices to say that the image was “just rude to be on the cover of a golf magazine.”

Publisher Rafael Martinez said that the retail chain’s reaction reeks of the type of censorship that often functions to silence hard truths about many of the low-points of America’s history.

“Freedom of speech stands at the very heart of American society. Our content is uplifting. We didn’t create the reality represented by the cover”, said Martinez.

“In fact, it was our fore-parents who were forced to survive the atrocities of slavery and we alone are the custodians of their stories. As such, the image on the cover of the Feb/Mar issue is by no means a source of shame for us.”

Managing Editor Sobukwe Odinga, who wrote the cover story, said, “I’m pleased by the broad array of responses we have received, and I think it is indicative of how timely this debate about race and history really is”.

“The fact that the image alone elicits such a visceral response from the management at Sports Authority is proof that no matter how much we try to deny it, we as a society have not overcome the painful legacy of slavery”.

“Whether it’s in the form of longstanding domestic inequalities or new forms of racism directed at vulnerable ethnic groups on an international scale, America has a long way to go in terms of getting beyond its crude fascination with race.”

The Green Magazine is privately owned and operated by Ina and Rafael Martinez, who founded the magazine because of a distinct multicultural void in the editorial content of mainstream golf publications.

“I think we have an obligation to provoke people to think and ask questions about slavery and many, many other issues we are clearly still grappling with,” said Ina Martinez.

“I stand by our decision and welcome the dialogue.”

True to its motto of “golf beyond the links,” The Green Magazine delivers the game’s rich history, how it is played today, and coverage of luxury destinations, fine dining, and wines & spirits.

The Green Magazine’s sumptuously illustrated large format represents the first of its kind to address a readership made up of the fast-growing demographic of affluent African Americans, Hispanics, and Asian Americans.

Members of those groups play more than 64 million rounds of golf a year. The Green Magazine is available in retailers nationwide including Barnes & Nobles, B. Dalton’s, Books-a-Million, Hastings, and select Hudson News outlets.

The Green Magazine and “The Green TV” are subsidiaries of New York City-based Vision Media and Communications, LLC, which was founded by Rafael Martinez. Vision Media and Communications, LLC is dedicated to connecting timely developments with classic concepts by way of advanced media.

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