I read this article by Kurtis Larson in the Edmonton Sun today and it made me appreciate the double standards used by those who want to get their way no matter the harm it does.
Larson is berated by many commenters at the web page for “not understanding what teamwork is” and being “deliberately provocative.” While I have no idea of what motivated Mr Larson to pen the article, the fact that he did illustrated the double standards that govern decisions about attending sporting events in politically dubious places.
Russia is a pretty despotic place, run by and for a few ex-KGB cancer types and their attendant gangster buddies. They keep the church happy and the church helps them keep people in line. In order to do this the church and the state have reinstated that old Russian favourite the Pogrom; only with one small difference the scapegoated victims this time are not the Jews but homosexuals. Moves were made to try and convince athletes to boycott the Sochi games but they were met with the usual self serving hand wringing that usually accompanies such moves.
… want to victimize athletes who had worked so hard to make the American team.
Wrote Louganis and then followed it up with
… I’m confident that the best response to the mounting repression in Russia is engagement.
I guess at least he didn’t use the pathetically naive and trite, “Let’s keep politics out of sport” rationale so beloved of the truly inane.
Well if it is all about not denying athletes who have worked so hard for so long their time to go for gold, what on earth is going on with Junio?
One of four Canadian men competing in Wednesday’s 1,000-metre event, the 23-year-old long-track speed skater quit – disqualifying himself so Canada could win. So he would lose.
He quit so Denny Morrison, in what could be his last Olympics, could have another chance at a podium – the story of these Games.
Why on earth should Junio need leaning on to give up what he had worked hard at, just so someone else who had lost out because of his own mistake could get a mulligan? If it’s all about keeping politics out of sport and giving everyone a chance to shine, then why did the coaches do this. Surely it is to the victor the spoils?
But no! It is never about the high-minded excuses, it’s about politics, the real politics in sports that that occurs among coaches and veterans behind closed doors. The same reason why athletes broke the boycott in South Africa is on display here and it stinks of corruption, hypocrisy and selfishness.
It seems that it’s okay to prop up a beastly regime by attending their publicity seeking sports events and to turn a blind eye to the modern pogroms underway in that plutocracy, with seemingly inviolable principles. But when it comes to internal politics, it’s principles? What principles?
This is yet another reason to hate the olympics and specifically this rich man’s version of them. It also illustrates the hubris that is so apparent in the modern money-grubbing world of international sporting events.
Thousands can be beaten up, killed and oppressed for their sexuality but that can’t stand in the way of a competitor’s right to compete. Team tactics show that those excuses were just that… self serving excuses.
Team Canada leading the world in a way I never thought it would.