FIRST WORD

USA TODAY US Edition - - SPORTS -

WE, LIKE MANY AMER­I­CANS, MADE THE MIS­TAKE OF THINK­ING THAT OUR RE­GION’S AND COUN­TRY’S LESS-THANSTELLAR PASTS WERE FIRMLY BE­HIND US, THAT 21ST CEN­TURY AMER­ICA WAS BE­COM­ING A MORE IN­CLU­SIVE NA­TION COM­MIT­TED TO CEL­E­BRAT­ING DIVERSITY. THAT IS NOT THE CASE.” Red Sox owner John Henry, in a state­ment about the “Take the Lead” ini­tia­tive an­nounced Thurs­day that in­cludes all the ma­jor pro­fes­sional sports teams that call Bos­ton and New Eng­land home. The ini­tia­tive is seek­ing for in­clu­sion at venues and ask­ing fans to call out those who use hate­ful or racist speech at events.

DREW AN­GERER, GETTY IM­AGES

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