Olympian in Black Power salute to sell medal

TommieTommie?Smith is selling the gold medal he won at the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City, where his Black Power salute on the podium shocked the sports world.

The former San Jose State runner has put his gold medal for the 200 meters and spikes up for auction at New York-based M.I.T. Memorabilia. The bid starts at $250,000, and the sale is scheduled to close Nov. 4.

The 66-year-old Smith, who now lives in Georgia, declined comment to the San Jose Mercury News.

M.I.T.’s Gary Zimet says Smith is selling the medal for the money but also because he wants to share it with the public.

Smith won the 200 in world-record time, then was expelled from the Games along with bronze medalist John Carlos when they bowed their heads during the Star-Spangled Banner and raised their black-gloved fists in protest. The human rights protest eventually earned Smith and Carlos international acclaim.