Olympic Scores to Watch: One Black Eye for Spain; Another for China

Shall We Begin a Competition for Reprehensible Behavior?

It’s not enough that the Chinese government has shut down villages, tossed people off property for “progress”, installed surveillance machinery and deputized thousands of citizens to monitor each other. We hear the trickles of news about memos literally blacklisting Mongolian and African/Blacks from restaurant service. We wonder how the stadiums and venues were built while schools in Sichuan had no proper engineering or materials to protect its children in case of earthquakes.

Then we get to see the spectacle of the heroic 9 y.o. hall monitor paraded out with Yao Ming at the astounding opening ceremonies. So what if the cute girl had to lip synch and the fireworks had to be pre-recorded because of smog obscuring the views? The show was what counted in the eyes of Chinese ceremony choreographers. It was about the awesome show of Chinese unity, Chinese pride, sacrifice of one for the good of many. Welcoming the world, or most of it, anyway.

Let the Judging Begin

We’re appropriately outraged at the Spanish team’s racist PR debacles, mocking “slanted eyes” for advertisements. Look closely, that’s Pau Gasol there in the picture. To what standard do we hold him?

Wonder how the conversation will go between Gasol and Chinese players like Yao Ming or Sun Yue? Both are Chinese NBA players now representing the Chinese team. Don’t hold your breath waiting for them to make public statements.

The real question is to what standard do we hold the IOC for allowing China the Olympics to begin with. It’s well documented that China’s human rights violations continue despite International protests. To what standard do we hold our leaders. W’s attendance at the Olympics marked the most consecutive days of International presence he’s had in his entire time in office. Frankly, the world’s probably better off for that.

To what extent do we hold ourselves accountable? We must, as uncomfortable as it is, hold both truths constant.

  • The Olympics are an amazing event that swells national pride, showcases the best our countries and our athletes have to offer their sport.
  • The Olympics can also fan the flames of ugly nationalism and racism.

The Games hold a magnifying lens to the host country, and to the behaviors of all the participants. It is our duty to look through that lens clearly, and to accept all that we see.

What we do with these images is up to us. I for one do not want to be left off the medal stands when the final judging is in.

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~ by jacqueline1230 on August 14, 2008.

2 Responses to “Olympic Scores to Watch: One Black Eye for Spain; Another for China”

  1. I’m appalled by this!! I had no idea the Spanish had done this. It’s positively ugly. And what were they thinking?!!

    On to better things… I’ve watched most of the Olympic basketball games – mens and womens. I’ve never been a big fan of pro basketball; I’ve always LOVED college basketball. So much heart! But I digress. Because I don’t watch much pro ball, I haven’t really witnessed what the hubbub is about when it comes to Kobe Bryant or Lebron James. But after watching Lebron dominate both offensively and defensively and selflessly assisting (or rescuing!) when necessary, I am duly impressed. And how about Chris Bosh! I have to admit I didn’t know the name; but I do now.

    Just one of many new names in my vocabulary…

  2. I really love how these guys are playing. Each one of them stealing, assisting, shooting. You really can’t defend them conventionally. Zone or man, no one’s keeping up! I also love to see the athletes from different sports, looking like awe-struck fans in the presence of the other athletes! Was it Leszak who said he “looked up and saw LeBron and Kobe and I didn’t want to let the two best players in the NBA down…”

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