Is it just me, or did the Olympics, once upon a time, actually have some credibility? Didn’t the Olympics used to be a gathering place for champions? A moment where nations shined and personal bests were achieved? The first stop on your way to a Wheaties box? I could swear it was not that long ago.
I’ve been to one Olympic event in my life. It was the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, since it was close to where I lived at the time. Say what you will about Mitt Romney, the guy put on one hell of an Olympics. And in the interest of full disclosure, John Williams’ “Call of the Champions” can still put a lump in my throat.
The only event I could get tickets to was women’s hockey—Germany versus China. I’ve seen my fair share of hockey games and this one was by far the best. Icing, checking, high-sticking, young athletes doing everything they could to win, despite the fact that neither country is known for hockey.
That being said, can someone pinpoint for me exactly when the Olympics went from being something we all could believe in to the godforsaken sideshow it and the events that surround it are today? Can someone tell me why we should give more than 60 seconds of our time to whatever beleaguered media event is scheduled for Tokyo?
The Norwegian Women’s Beach Handball team (and btw, what the hell is beach handball and when did it become an Olympic sport? What’s next, shuffleboard?) was fined $1,700 for choosing to wear shorts instead of bikini bottoms during competition. The team noted that the shorts were easier to play in, and I am reliably informed by an actual woman and not a “menstruating person” that during a woman’s period, bikini bottoms can be problematic at best, and disastrous at worst.
Although the sanction was played down, the message is clear, whether the league officials approve it or not: People are expected to tune in to the Olympics to see scantily clad women, not athletes. Apparently, there is money to be made by blurring the line between sports fan and hormone-stricken teen. Or dirty old man.
On the flip side, track and field Paralympian Olivia Breen was told at the English Championship that her shorts were too short. And as if that were not enough, another Paralympian, Becca Meyers, has withdrawn from the Tokyo games. Meyers is a swimmer and is blind and deaf. She was told she could not bring her caregiver with her. Did I mention that her caregiver is her mother? Never mind Becca Meyers’ needs or her dignity. Let’s get that blind and deaf girl in front of the cameras.
So, the Norwegians are sanctioned for not showing enough skin—because, you know, sex and ratings and stuff. The Paralympians are sanctioned for being people and not merely disabled and checking the right box for the IOC, sponsors, and broadcasters. They have no value as athletes or as people. Once again, human beings are made into products.
So, for the sake of the Norwegian Women’s Beach Handball team, Olivia Breen, and Becca Meyers, when the Tokyo games begin, I would tell the IOC and whatever idiot legacy media outlet has the temerity to broadcast the games to go to hell. Go directly to hell. Do not pass the podium and do not collect any bronze medals.
Source: PJ Media