The Sweetie Chronicles

Fill your paper with the breathings of your heart. ~William Wordsworth

Violence and Olympics Don't Mix


I think that all of this rioting and protesting surrounding the Olympics is sad. Watching the Olympics as a child was always an emotional experience, and maybe even more so as an adult. There is just something fundamentally wonderful about seeing athletes that have worked day and night for years finally get their chance. Some of these athletes have honestly worked from the time they were 3 years old, sacrificing friends, family time, regular childhood everything in order to be an Olympic grade athlete.

As the Beijing Olympics draw near, the only thing people can think about is politics. I guess this is a difficult argument to take sides on. On one hand, you have the idea that the Olympics is supposed to be free of politics and animosity between countries, and we are supposed to focus on the beauty and hard work of these athletes. Sure, it is about pride in your country and the people that compete for each country, but it is also supposed to be a showing of peaceful collaboration and competition. We should be able to set aside our differences and allow the young people that are competing to be in the spotlight for their big moments.

On the other hand, however, China is not exactly a free country like America. Protests on the way China has abused Tibet and its people are all over the news, but this is not a new issue. This is more like the topic that gets pushed to the side a lot, until now, of course. Since actors are usually at the forefront of activist groups due to their fame and position, Richard Gere spoke out for the International Compaign for Tibet when he said, "What the Chinese are doing, this is not an athletic game to them," he said. "This is putting a stamp of approval on repression and human rights abuses." He has a point there. We boycotted the Moscow Olympics games for similar reasons right? Sort of. And even though this is supposed to be about peace and overlooking our differences, you have to look at the big picture. Should we be so avidly supporting a country that does this to others?

You have to wonder what China's own Olympic athletes experience. Are they all athletes by choice? Or are they pretty much forced into this lifestyle? Did they have the freedom to choose what career path they would take? I wonder.

This is such a complicated issue and I can honestly say I am not sure what I think about all of it. I see evidence that China abuses its people and is a perpetual example of repression. Just because Survivor and America's Next Top model got to film there does not mean that they are "just like us." We have to remind ourselves that despite China's recent move to court American viewers and their money, China is not a FREE country. Its people are kept in the dark about a lot of things, not allowed to see the whole story, not even allowed to browse the entire internet. As much as I love to watch athletes in their moment of victory, maybe having the Olympics in China this year was a HUGE mistake and maybe the US should boycott it like the 1980 Olympics. I just don't know.

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Sarra Cannon

Young Adult Indie Author

I always secretly wanted to be a cheerleader. And a witch. Now, I write about both. The first five novels in my Peachville High Demons Young Adult Paranormal series are available now in ebook!

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