Amid Controversy….

For those that have been watching the news as of late, you know that start of the new Winter Olympics has taken place in Sochi, Russia amid a bit of controversy. We have heard all of the comments about the anti-gay laws and the protests as well as the fact that the faculties were not top notch or even close to working upon the arrivals of media and athletes.

The threats of violent by terrorists groups that have lead to many families of the athletes to stay home.   We cannot forget the price tag of 51 billion dollars to present this spectacle to the world and its invited guests. Now if we take the time to look back at the Global Olympic Games throughout the year, this is not the first time there has been conflict leading onto the games at all. Here are some highlights dating over a century ago:

1) 1908 Summer Olympics (London, United Kingdom)  Grand Duchy of Finland competed separately from the Russian Empire but was not allowed to display the Finnish flag.

2) 1936 Summer Olympics (Berlin, Germany) French and Canadian Olympians were accused of giving a Nazi salute while in the opening ceremony,

3) 1998 Winter Olympics (Nagano, Japan) A tape provided by one judge had another judge in the ice dancing competition trying to get the results pre-determined.

4) 2014 (Sochi, Russia) In August 2008, the government of Georgia called for a boycott as a response to Russia’s participation in the 2008 South Ossetia war.

As you can see there has always been strife and controversy when putting together the games for the world and in the future, there will be again. The political shuffling between countries can make tensions increase to an all-time high.  Only adding to the differences between their cultures and misunderstandings.

What we need to look at is what happens once the torch has been lit for the time that the torch is passed onto the next country that will host the games and the troubles that will follow.  This would be the athletes and the show they put on with each event. Whether it is cross country skiing, hockey or moguls, these athletes do not care what country you are from, orientation that you are or what gender a person is. At the end of the day, they are competing against each other and then congratulating each other.

Other than that, nothing else truly matters to them. Just sincere sportsmanship.This is a lesson for us all to learn in getting along once the games are over in our Global Community. If our leaders would look past differences there would not be the conflict that we are experiencing in today’s world. There would be a healthy respect for the differences that are shared on a planet that has become so small in this technology age where information for understanding is right at our fingertips.

For those of us that do not believe this can be or should be done, just watch the next two weeks to see how steps towards a healthy world are accomplished. I believe in the everyday world maybe our leaders, countries, and neighbors ought to learn from this excellent concept.   Close your eyes for a moment and picture this. All of these different cultures, religions, men, women, children getting along while being different from one another.

 

 

Andrew Scott

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