Did Jesse Owens want to shake Hitler's hand and get their photo together and, if so, did Hitler really snub him?
I'm asking this based on a movie I'm watching.
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Jesse Owens was snubbed by who?
Everyone knows that at the 1936 Olympics Hitler snubbed Jesse Owens. As the story goes, after Owens won one gold medal, Hitler, incensed, stormed out of Olympic Stadium so he wouldn't have to congratulate Owens on his victory.
The facts are simple. Hitler did not congratulate Owens, but that day he didn't congratulate anybody else either, not even the German winners. As a matter of fact, Hitler didn't congratulate anyone after the first day of the competition. That first day he had shaken hands with all the German victors, but that had gotten him in trouble with the members of the Olympic Committee. They told him that to maintain Olympic neutrality, he would have to congratulate everyone or no one. Hitler chose to honor no one.
Hitler did snub a black American athlete, but it was Cornelius Johnson, not Jesse Owens. It happened the first day of the meet. Just before Johnson was to be decorated, Hitler left the stadium. A Nazi spokesman explained that Hitler's exit had been pre-scheduled, but no one believes that. - Adolf Hitler, Jesse Owens and the Olympics Myth of 1936.
Hitler seems to have snubbed both men, but Cornelius Johnson was snubbed first.
Upon his return to the USA, Jesse Owens had this to say:
"When I came back to my native country, after all the stories about Hitler, I couldn't ride in the front of the bus," Owens told ESPN. "I had to go to the back door. I couldn't live where I wanted. I wasn't invited to shake hands with Hitler, but I wasn't invited to the White House to shake hands with the president, either." - Did Hitler Really Snub Jesse Owens at 1936 Berlin Olympics?
Jesse Owens deserved better!
For those interested, here is a YouTube documentary on it: Jesse Owens at the Berlin Olympics in 1936.
Owens, a lifelong member of the Republican party, said
"Hitler didn't snub me - it was [FDR] who snubbed me. The president didn't even send me a telegram,"
at a Republican rally in October, 1936. You could say he was not snubbed based on his own words, though I think his words may have been a little politically motivated and not representative of his thoughts.
Also, according to Wikipedia, a journalist named Siegfried Mischner claims that Owens showed him a picture of Owens and Hitler shaking hands hoping the journalist would "change the accepted version of history" of that day. This, however, is very unlikely given no photo has ever surfaced and that it contradicts some of Owens's own statements.