‘Something has to be done’: Quinten Gause discusses leadership and anti-racism

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Growing up, Quentin Gause moved around Rochester. From Dewey Avenue to the suburbs, he met all kinds of people of all different races, religions, and ethnicities.

Between the people he met in his travels around the city and the lessons his parents taught him about inclusion, the Bishop Kearney graduate has kept an open mind while meeting people throughout his life.

“Some folks are maybe not used to seeing a black person,” said Gause. “People in black neighborhoods might not like or be used to white people.”

International travel as he got older, as well as playing college at Rugers, only expanded that mindset. Gause went on to play in four different professional football leagues in the United States and Canada, and saw plenty of racial similarities between the locker rooms.

“You see a lot of black men in NFL locker rooms saying, ‘I want to grind for my family,’ but caucasian men are there as well and have a back up plan,” said Gause. “Caucaisian men have been the minority in the locker room in any of the football leagues I’ve been in.”

At the end of the day, Gause says football brings the men together, which is unity he feels the country needs too. In the wake of George Floyd’s death and the growth of the Black Lives Matter movement, he sees the necessary conversations being had as an agent of change America has desperately needed for centuries.

“There was a video from Malcolm X that talked about that,” said Gause. “It said, ‘once people come together, there’s going to be a time and place when folks, everyone around the world is going to come together, and are going to be tired of this.’ Tired of the killing, tired of the injustice, and something is going to have to be done.”

Something is happening, in the form of peaceful protests, signed petitions riots, social media posts and more. No matter the form of anti-racist activism, Gause cautions people to remember why the movement is in the limelight to begin with – George Floyd.

“No man or woman has the right to take someone’s life at all,” said Gause. “At the end of the day, I’m glad the conversation is being talked about.”

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