Top Ten Videos to watch

HISTORY Brings 'Roots' Cast And Crew To The White House For Screening
Graduates tossing caps into the air
Freddie Gray Baltimore Protests
Mid section of man in graduation gown holding diploma
Legendary Baseball Player Tony Gwynn's Family Files A Lawsuit Against Big Tobacco
ME.jailhouse#2.0117.CW Montebello City Council has approved use of a private contractor to run the n
Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel Addresses Police Misconduct At Chicago City Council Meeting
WWII Soldiers Standing In A Flag Draped Sunset - SIlhouette
Students Taking a College Exam
Bill Cosby Preliminary Hearing
Hillary Clinton Campaigns In Louisville, Kentucky
Worried black businesswoman at desk
Tyler Perry And Soledad O'Brien Host Gala Honoring Bishop T.D. Jakes' 35 Years Of Ministry
Teacher with group of preschoolers sitting at table
FBI Officials Discuss Apprehension Of Explosions Suspect After Three-Day Manhunt
NFC Championship - San Francisco 49ers v Atlanta Falcons
Protests Erupt In Chicago After Video Of Police Shooting Of Teen Is Released
Nine Dead After Church Shooting In Charleston
Portrait of senior African woman holding money
President Bush Speals At Federalist Society's Gala
Police Line Tape
Senior Woman's Hands
Police officers running
New Orleans Residents Return to Housing Projects
David Banner
Leave a comment



Eight-year-old Davion Chatman does a handstand in about three feet of water in the Fairground Pool one recent afternoon. Nearby, his brother, Chris Chatman, 13, rolls himself into a ball and does somersaults.

“Hey, watch me,” calls DiMarco Martin, 13, who’s standing in chin-high water. He dives straight to the bottom and touches the pool floor.

At a glance, these kids look like they’re as comfortable in water as, say, Flipper, Shamu, maybe even Michael Phelps. But throw them in the other end of the pool, Joshua Beeks said, and who knows what would happen.

“They probably can’t — what we say — swim in deep water,” said Beeks, area manager for the City of St. Louis Recreation Division. “If they can swim, they would go down to the deep water because it allows them to show off a little bit.”

A recent study commissioned by USA Swimming and conducted by the University of Memphis found that nearly 68.9 percent of African-American children have low or no ability to swim. That’s compared to about 40 percent of white kids.

What’s more, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that fatal and nonfatal drowning rates are disproportionately higher in minority populations.

Fairground Pool, near Grand and Natural Bridge Avenue, holds a scant 15 children on this broiling summer day. All of them are African-American. Only three are swimming in the deep end, and they earned their way there by proving to the lifeguard that they could swim from one side of the pool to the other.

Beeks estimates that about 100 children from the predominantly black neighborhood would come to the pool each day during summers past, when admission was free. Now, admission is $1 for children and $2 for adults and attendance has dropped.

“But even then, 75 percent would be in the shallow end,” he said.

Click here to read more.

Click here to view photos:


Olympic Gold Medalist Works To Close Racial Gap In Swimming

Black Heritage Championship Swim Meet Showcases Kids’ Skills