Goin' for the gold! Woohoo!
Personally, I think the Olympic Games in China are going to be a complete and total disaster. Already, several athletes have already pulled out as a result of their justifiable reluctance to compete at any level in an environment where the air can not only be seen covering the skyline in a thick sepia haze, but it also has a cloying, biting flavor that stings your throat as though you've walked into an old, smoke-choked Irish pub somewhere in the back alleys of Belfast.
The State, that nebulous, shady authority, in an interest of self-protection, has also been trying to dictate what can and can not be broadcast around the deeply historical, and quite beautiful city of Beijing. Tienanmen Square, for example, has been declared completely off limits, and no network is allowed the luxury of a live, uncensored broadcast from an area which is among the most historical on the planet. Indeed, it's hard to find any other location anywhere which has been so important in shaping the very definition of a city, a nation, and a people than the wide-open spaces of Tienanmen Square.
Then there's Tibet. China's treatment of the Tibet Autonomous Region has been ridiculous and vile and embarrassing. The rhetoric out of Beijing suggests that Tibet is a danger, a hazard, and a threat to the entire nation of China rather than the control and power of a select few.
Will these games be interesting?
However, I think when all is said and done, the games will be overshadowed by a great many tragic things. After all, it's impossible for a nation to look good when so many only have to do so little to make it look bad.
Hopefully, however, I can be wrong. I hope I am.
Posted By Dan to The Wisdom of a Distracted Mind at 3/27/2008 12:06:00 PM