“My view was that nobody’s gonna tell me whether I should salute the flag,” David Meggyesy says. “It’s my decision.”
His decision was made nearly 50 years ago, only a short time after Americans John Carlos and Tommie Smith raised their fists during the national anthem at the 1968 Summer Olympics in Mexico City.
“I stood on the sideline with my helmet in front of me and my head bowed,” says Meggyesy, now 75. “My thought was, I was too chicken to raise my fist in the air.”
The creation of the organization was spearheaded by former Olympic long jumper Dr. Phil Shinnick and included former Olympic, ex-professional and recreational athletes who were opposed to the boycott and "politicizing" of the Olympic games. These athletes were deeply concerned about the increasing tension between the United States and the Soviet Union, and were willing to take a stand.