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Saturday, February 18, 2006

The problem with the Olympics

The most diverse ever?

Pacific News Service, the longtime lefty news service has the following story:

Black Athletes Set to Compete in Most Diverse Winter Olympics Ever

News Report, Monica Lewis,
Black America, Feb 11, 2006
When the opening ceremonies of the 2006 Winter Olympics air on NBC tonight from Turin, Italy, people may be shocked to see the most racially and ethnically diverse U.S. team in the history of the Winter Games.

While black athletes have long dominated competitions in the Summer Games, blacks are making their presence felt on the international stage when it comes to competition on ice and snow.

Although the U.S. Olympic Committee does not officially keep records on the race of its athletes, there will be six people of African descent competing in such sports as long track speed skating, bobsled and figure skating, among them Vonetta Flowers, the sister from Alabama who made history in the 2002 games when she became the first African-American to ever win a medal during a Winter Olympic competition. She will attempt to defend the gold medal she captured during the last Games in Salt Lake City, Utah.

Another likely medalist, long track speedskater Shani Davis, hails from the south side of Chicago and is expected to prove that a young man from the inner-city can excel at more than hoops and football. Flowers, Davis and other black athletes will be a major asset to the U.S. team, former Olympic bobsledder Chris Coleman, told

“Our chances are very strong,” said Coleman, himself one of the few blacks to ever participate in the sport at the Olympic level. “As an organization, the U.S. Olympic team is hoping that we can certainly duplicate the performance of 2002, when we scored 34 medals, and to have people of color helping us equal or surpass that number would be a significant feat.”

NBC, which paid $1.5 billion to broadcast the Torino Games, as well as the 2008 Summer Games in Beijing, is banking on the success of a more ethnically diverse team. The Washington Post reports that the network will expand its coverage to include several cable channels, hoping that a younger and more diverse audience will generate a ratings coup.

“The Winter Olympics used to present a promotional challenge. Now there’s speed, danger and an Olympic team that is more identifiable to a more diverse cross-section of America,” Mike McCarley, vice president of communications and marketing for NBC Universal Sports & Olympics, told the Washington Post.

Great, right?

Well, not so fast. THis came in the e-mail

I was reading some stuff on ESPN and stumbled across this Page 2 quote of the day by Bryant Gumbel:

"Count me among those who don't care about them and won't watch them. So try not to laugh when someone says these are the world's greatest athletes, despite a paucity of blacks that makes the Winter Games look like a GOP convention." -- Bryant Gumbel on HBO's "Real Sports

Cue the outrage of the racist right. Here's a sample of the reaction on the HBO forum page:

Too bad this will never happen since African American hip-hop culture promotes only football and basketball as their “true” sports. (OK I know there are blacks in baseball, but comon’ it’s now a growing Latin least here with the Mets). Gumbel simply advanced this tired stereotype of American sports wanting us to tune into March Madness college ball instead of the greatest hockey tournament on earth with the greatest current hockey athletes on earth whom are not injured.

Can’t I just watch any show without the race card being pulled and Mr. Gumble does this on every show?

If you have pride in being white you are labled a evil monster. What a joke!!! All you liberal zombies go to hell with your human pride BS!!!Hey white liberal fakes I have a challenge for you. Go walk through the inner cities preaching brothely love and see how you are recieved . Stop preaching your lies from your gated communities and take it to the front lines cowards. You will be eaten alive just for being a white person.

Moments like this kind of make you mad at all the african princes and tribal leaders that suckered us into purchasing all of them hundreds of years ago. Even their own people sold them out and we still got blamed for it.

Why do these thugs/gangsters (straight out of the get--toe) who have never finish college or gone at all get to play in sports for a living that should be a privilege not a right. Yes they can play and many are good at what they do but why should that alone give them a pass to act like spoiled entitled welfare whores?

Bryant Gumbel is a racist and a hypocrite! I guess he does not know that Abraham Lincoln, you know the one who signed the emancipation proclamation was a member of the 'Grand Old Party'. And if he really wants to feel like he's at a GOP Convention all he has to do get in bed with his WHITE wife!!


Allow me to enlighten you, Mr. Left Side of the Bell Curve. Blacks are THE MOST racist people on this planet, which is why most people on earth do not like (most) of you. The only people who suck up to you are the guilt-ridden, self-hating, white leftists on college/university campuses, who think that 'multiculturalism,' 'tolerance,' and 'DIE-versity' are the greatest things since white bread. THEY are the real people, who are keeping you on the 'plantation,' but you are too asleep to see that.

Gumble hit it on the head that blacks need to succeed in sports along with other races. If not for sports, blacks wouldn't have any success stories except for hip-hop, crap or whatever "music" they call it. Why isn’t there one stable, successful black country in the world?

Don’t you think that Mr. Gumbel is a little bit full of himself and a little bit deluded in regards to his position and the position of his people? I mean, don’t you think he needs to be reminded that he and his race are a group of people who never even independently invented the WHEEL, or DOMESTICATED animals, or irrigation and cultivation? Don’t you think he needs to be reminded that EVERYTHING of modernity; EVERYTHING of civilization; EVERYTHING of any real substance or importance which makes the quality of his life and his peoples lives better, was either GIVEN to them or TAUGHT to them by WHITE EUROPEANS?

Mr Gumbel is entitled to his opinion. I also believe Mr Gumbel is a racist and a liberal and used his position on the show to inject politics and political hatred into his commentary.

And on it goes for 34 pages of comments. I took one thing away from the commentary on the HBO forum. The word "liberal" is code for "loves blacks" for racists. Which explains why the GOP uses the term "liberal" as much as possible - it gets a nice froth going in their rabid ignorant bigoted supporters.

But all this talk of race is the simple answer.

The fact is that the Winter Olympics is as much classist as anything else. Unless you are upper middle class, the odds of you being a snowboarding champion are small to none.

Then, because of the age and protective gear many of the athletes use, they have zero personality. It wasn't always this way, in the 1970's skiing boomed as a sport, mainly because of ABC. Most people watching do so the way they watch the X Games,. as an odd form of entertainment. The athletes seem to be so focused on their sport, that charm is left far behind. The same charm which brings former skateboarders Bam Margera and Jason Lee into your homes every week and made Tony Hawk a multi- millionaire

The reason I keep bringing up the World Cup is not just because I like soccer. It is simply the dominant sporting event on earth. Not so much in the US, but on most of the planet. Anyone can buy a soccerball and play.

The US team quietly aquired a number of black players over the years, despite soccer's suburban reputation. Freddie Adu is about to be the first US player to be a soccer superstar, of course that will be done in the Premiership, but that's not such a big deal any more. Tim Howard and Eddie Pope are mainstays as US internationals.

And that makes the US side look like America, where the Winter Olympics look like a well heeled suburb.

As to the troll quality rant on ESPN's site, you could not be more wrong about the origins of man.

posted by Steve @ 9:28:00 AM

9:28:00 AM

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