Monday, August 6, 2012

Rant #785: Why I Don't Care About the Olympics

Perhaps you were wondering why I have not written a single, solitary word about the Olympics.

Perhaps not ... but I am going to break my silence now and tell you why the Olympics and I go together like oil and vinegar.

I don't like the Olympics.

I don't like the phony pomp and circumstance, and I certainly don't like the phony nationalism that the U.S. demonstrates during the overlong process.

We become European during the Olympics, and frankly, I am not interested in athletes that throw the flag over themselves.

I don't like the fact that we have professional athletes competing, but let's face it, our hand was forced on that one.

And that leads me to the next thing.

I hate how phony people get during the Olympics.

All of a sudden, we care about sports like archery and swimming, events that we normally couldn't give a hoot about.

Sure, we know that Michael Phelps won all those medals, but even three months from now, will we care that so and so won a match in an international swimming competition apart from the Olympics?

Probably not, and we won't care about track and field, and volleyball, and the like after the Olympics is over and done with.

I also don't like the Olympic history that some people choose to conveniently forget.

Let's take the 1972 Olympics, probably the last time I really cared about this two-week sleep inducer.

Forty years ago, the U.S. basketball team lost the Gold medal to the Russians in a championship game that was so rigged that even a 15-year old kid like me back then could see it.

The Russians got three--count them, three--chances to win this game, and of course, they did, even after the U.S. team had won the game twice.

This error was never rectified, and there has been a movement to get Gold medals for the U.S. team to this day, that is how idiotically that game went.

And more importantly, 40 years ago, members of the Israeli team were murdered for just one reason: they were Jewish.

Extremists interrupted the games when they took members of the Israeli team hostage, and murdered them one by one, 11 murders in total.

ABC Sportscaster Jim McKay and his team kept us riveted to the television in describing the details, probably the highest point in American television journalism history.

You simply could not leave the television as the details leaked out.

But 40 years later, the International Olympic Committee refuses to acknowledge this event, and would not have a moment of silence for the murdered athletes during the current Olympiad.

This was a heinous, cowardly act, and the IOC, which has been accused of blatant anti-Semitism in years past, lived up to those charges once again this year.

So, in a nutshell, I congratulate the athletes for their skills, but I don't really care about the Olympics.

My sports direction during the summer is baseball, and baseball it is this summer.

The Olympics? Old fashioned, out of date, anti-Semitic, having little or nothing to do with sports, and I won't spend any more time giving my reasons for ignoring this Olympiad.

I think I have made my case.


  1. You're on target, Larry!

    For myself, the game changer came with the USA's "dream team" for basketball, signalling the end of an era of non-professional athletes in the Olympics. (It was creeping in prior to this, but this action was done so in a most blatant manner.)

    Since then, I don't bother much with them, especially with that sticky, over-saturated coverage by NBC and the NBC-related cable channels.

    Worst of all, there's no more Bud Greenspan around to document the highlights in his own special way. I'd rather look at his documentaries than Bob Costas any old day.

  2. To be honest about it, several other countries forced the U.S.'s hand with using professional athletes in basketball, as they have used their own pro athletes for decades.

    But the over-coverage of the Olympics, the phoniness that I see with people who suddenly are interested in sports they normally could care less about, and the games being taken over by politics has turned me off to this event forever.



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