Other than the human rights violations, homophobia, animal cruelty issues, orange tap water and conducting a winter Olympics in the same weather climate as Jacksonville, Fla., I can honestly say that I think allowing Sochi Russia to host the winter games was an excellent decision. Hey the only thing they’re missing is a Ku Klux Klan rally. But hey, there are still the closing ceremonies.
Now I loves me some Olympics, I do. I often overlook certain things about certain host countries because I love them so much. But issues in Russia are getting increasingly difficult for me to ignore. Let’s start with Vladimir Putin’s stance against gays, which is stepping backwards four or five decades. But he went even further by suggesting that gay people and pedophiles are one in the same. Yup, somehow the Olympic committee missed that one.
Then the story broke about how they were going to kill all the stray dogs so that they wouldn’t be bothersome to the visitors of the games. In fact, Alexei Sorokin, the director of the pest control firm put in charge of "catching and disposing," said "God forbid a dog runs in the stadium at the opening ceremony. This will be a disgrace for the whole country." See, I would beg to differ because I think that having a leader that publicly suggests that gays and pedophiles are one in the same would be a bigger disgrace! But what do I know; I’m operating in the new millennium where we judge people by the content of their character and not who they sleep with. I know ... crazy.
Then there’s the human right violations. Let’s start with people being evicted from their homes so that the Olympic venues could be built (which, by the way, also led to the increase in stray dogs; if you don’t have a place to live then neither does your pooch). Now I’m not talking about four of five homes here ... I’m talking about 2,000! Not just houses either. Let’s say you owned rentals properties because, after all, this is a beachside resort-type town, then chances are you may have lost your home and the homes you rented for your income. Let that one seep in, then try and muster up the ability to care about speed skating.
So who do I blame? Well I can tell you that I don’t blame the athlete. The athlete is there with one purpose in mind, competing. Something that since they were small children they’ve crafted themselves for this moment. So even though it would be easy to blame the athlete, you can’t. Instead, point your crooked finger of blame at the International Olympic Committee. There are 108 members on this committee and other than being the governing body responsible for the games they are also responsible for entertaining petitions for host countries. So with that in mind are you going to tell me that nobody on the committee saw that Russia applied and thought we really shouldn’t consider this because it won’t end well?
Let’s for one instant say that Russia interviewed well. It’s like some people you work with. They have no idea what they’re doing on a day to day basis yet they report to work every day. How does that happen? They interviewed well. So Russia interviewed well, then they started the process of picking an actual location they said we’re are going to have our winter Olympic in a beach resort town (insert buzzer/wrong answer noise here). The IOC should have said, "gee, not a good idea," but it didn’t. Next, Russia starts evicting their citizens from their homes so they can build a venue (insert buzzer/wrong answer noise here). IOC -- "gee, not a good idea" -- but they didn’t.
I can keep that up all day, but you get the point. So if something ticks you off about the games, direct your anger to the IOC! This wasn’t the first time they’ve completely dropped the ball (Salt Lake City, Beijing) and it will certainly not be the last! What the Hell is up with that?