Wednesday, August 01, 2012

Olympic Twit

I've always enjoyed watching the Olympics.  I even get emotional watching gymnastics.  I know weird, huh?  There is something about watching these guys and gals tumbling and making their bodies do things that are not all that natural to start with, that gets me teary eyes.  I'm in awe of swimmers, at how easy they make it look. Yet, this year something that bothered me previously is really getting jammed along my tunnel of admiration for these athletes.  It bothers me to see professionals participating.  Serena Williams is a great athlete but she chose to play professionally and earn shit loads of money for being a professional tennis player, so she shouldn't be allowed to play against "regular" people.  I've taken Miss Williams but it could be anyone else who's a professional, like basket ball players, or any other sports.  I don't think it is right.

And what to say about these expulsions of different players for their Tweet, really?  I don't get this.  I did compete, at a local level mostly, and despite the "good spirits" there was always some dislike of my opponents.  I had to not like them if I wanted to play hard against them and beat them.  I do understand the racial aspect of things, especially at the Olympics, but at the same time, it is to be expected that players of different teams will comment and criticize their opponents, especially if they are on the losing side of the game.

I think the social media are being too intrusive and in some ways are restricting our freedom.  I mean, we've always expressed dislike of our opponents.  It used to be verbally.  Nowadays it is on Facebook and/or Twitter (to name only those).  Before only those close to us would hear our anger or racism.  Nowadays, it is for the world to see.  Since we are not bright enough to censor ourselves, because let's be honest, it looks like we can't do that in this era of sharing way too much information, society has to monitor what's being posted.

I do understand the terms of the International Olympic Committee's code of conduct, which requires athletes to show mutual respect, but come on, isn't that on for the field or stadium? At the same time, I can't help and wonder how did the Olympic Committee know about every tweet  issued by any athletes?  Someone must have complained. Should the Committee be involved in such issues?  Where does it stop?  It was after a game, on a personal account.  Does that mean that because you're going to the Olympics you can't express your opinions or anger? 

I'm just thinking about those professional basket ball players who constantly nag and pull each others' leg during a game (I did play basket ball and it can get pretty nasty at times), do the Olympic Committee think that because they are at the Olympics they will refrain from such tactics of intimidation?  Some players make their careers on being bad boys (or bad mouths), so because they're representing a country they will play nice, yeah right!

It seems to me like too much hypocrisy is going on.  Countries want to win and will use whatever mean necessary.  If it means dopes, or professional why not.  I don't think it's fair and I don't think it is realistic to think that because it's the Olympics that everything is swell.  Some nations have been hating each others for centuries and it's not a two weeks break that will change that.  Some people have no class, and being at the Olympics won't change that either.  Some people are racist, bigot or whatever else and that isn't about to change because we promote peace, love, friendship.  People have to want to change first and foremost.

I'm closing with this:
A female CNN journalist heard about a very old Jewish man who had been going to the Western Wall to pray, twice a day, every day, for a long, long time. So she went to check it out. She went to the Western Wall and there he was, walking slowly up to the holy site. She watched him pray and after about 45 minutes, when he turned to leave, using a cane and moving very slowly, she approached him for an interview.
"Pardon me, sir, I'm Rebecca Smith from CNN. What's your name?
"Morris Feinberg," he replied.
"Sir, how long have you been coming to the Western Wall and praying?"
"For about 60 years."
"60 years! That's amazing! What do you pray for?"
"I pray for peace between the Christians, Jews and the Muslims. I pray for all the wars and all the hatred to stop. I pray for all our children to grow up safely as responsible adults and to love their fellow man. I pray that politicians tell us the truth and put the interests of the people ahead of their own interests."
"How do you feel after doing this for 60 years?"
"Like I'm talking to a fucking wall."

Yep, that pretty much sums it up doesn't it? I think I'd get along with the old man...

1 comment:

Marius said...

You said it. People have gotten way too sensitive about things like tweets and such. I presume you're referring to the Greek athlete who was expelled for the 'racist' tweet. It wasn't even that racist, she just mentioned the African team. People are far too ready to cry racism when any mention of ethnicity is made that isn't complete fawning praise. But from what I've seen most of the Olympic judges and administrators are some of the most unpleasant, humorless sticks-in-the-mud ever, so I'm not surprised.