Some thoughts on Putin’s Olympic Games and why I will not be watching.
Once again, the International Olympic Committee caved in and awarded the games to a country with serious political and social problems and a horrible record of anti-democratic policies and actions, along with human rights abuses.
Let’s run down what we have learned about what’s really going on in Sochi.
Animal cruelty — just this week, we learned there’s a last-minute cull of stray dogs going on, many of whom are friendly and are being killed just to “tidy up” public places.
Russia is well known as an anti-democratic totalitarian state which has made a mockery of elections and attempts to reform the government and bring in some semblance of democracy.
Anti-gay laws — officials are monitoring social media and shutting down comments unflattering to Russia.
There is rampant corruption and millions of dollars of unfinished or poorly done work (Where did all that money go? Oops!)
Please feel free to add to this list.
Summary: the Sochi Olympics are yet another example of how the Games are nothing more than a forum for tyrants (Putin and his gang) to bask in the adoration of the world.
Unfortunately, the Olympics has a history of this:
• Hitler’s Games, 1936, Munich.
• Munich, 1972: the murder of Israeli athletes by terrorists, and the Games went on.
• Moscow Games, 1980: Soviet Invasion of Afghanistan. Western boycott, now forgotten.
• Beijing, now Sochi.
Enough is enough. Cancel the Olympics. Stop wasting money that should be directed to health and education and housing and other projects that create better living standards and a more open society for the citizens in the host country.
There must be a better way to appreciate the accomplishments of athletes, without promoting the political repression of a totalitarian state.