Well the original Olympic participants suspended wars just to hold them. The origins of the Olympics are about as apolitical as you can get so your boycott would not be in line with the "Olympic spirit". Now I am not saying you are wrong for feeling the way you do or that you shouldn't do what you think is right. I am not about to defend modern Olympics as the Olympic committee is an incredibly corrupt and extremely political organization. I am just pointing out that the Olympics were created to transcend such issues.
I'm far more concerned with the history of really shoddy coverage of the games. I'd really like to see something more than women's gymnastics and swimming for the summer games, and ice dancing for the winter. Unfortunately, as someone who enjoys sports like boxing, weightlifting and wrestling (all obviously very popular and mainstream these days), I'm usually frustrated with the coverage.
Those are some good points, although I like all of the sports that you mentioned. During one of the recent Olympics (one that occurred prior to 2003) I had to view (due to 'local-local' cabeling requirements) the events on an alternative channel. Although I missed the major events (like those mentioned above), I found myself enjoying some of the less-shown events such as archery and curling. I never knew how interesting curling could be. It was a lot of fun watching the strategy of that event. That was the bright side of what came out of not having access to the primary channel for the Olympics at that time.
One thing that's really frustrating to hear every Olympic year is that the CBC does a pretty good job of showing events live and uncut, even when the games are in a far-off time zone (as is the case here), whereas NBC shows a lot of (American) athlete profiles, tape-delays everything, and basically does everything they can to make it into a pre-scripted program.
Yep, that's why when I watch the Olympics, I watch CBC coverage. I actually get to see the GAMES. Not a never-ending avalanche of athlete profiles and saccharine fluff pieces that have nothing to do with the competition itself.
Put their life stories on the web so people can look them up if they're interested. Spend your prime-time hours showing actual competition.
I lost interest years ago when they started using professional athletes to compete. It was great to see AAA competitors win their events and then get recruited professionally. That was great to watch then, but now, I don't want to see pro athletes compete in games during their off seasons or on a break from their current season to compete.
True..., I guess for me it's the whole commerical aspect of using professional athletes in an area that use to be dedicated to hard working individuals who worked regular jobs and trained for the Olympics. I even recall some of the athletes receiving funds from local businesses so that they wouldn't have to work and spend time training. Too me that's true competition. Professional sport is competitive also but not the same for me.
I could be wrong, but it's always been my understanding that the amateur aspect of the Olympics had a quite different goal in mind. Essentially, they wanted to keep the unwashed masses from competing, so they limited it to amateurs, assuming that only the wealthy would have the money to train and forgo work while doing it.
The other downside was that the US always ended up competing against the Soviet system, whose athletes were definitely professional in everything but name. That was never especially fair. At least now the best can get out there and do their thing in most sports.
Popping in to this discussion of Olympic coverage (now that the unacceptable slant has been erased), my dad finished 6th in the world (for Canada) in the high jump in London, 1948. Brag, brag, boast, boast.
I'm not sure we're on the same page here. It's my understanding that people who had any need of regular jobs were they type of people the amateur rule was trying to exclude. The idea was to keep the games as sort of a gentleman's pursuit. That forced gifted but poor amateurs to work around the rule by doing everything but the most obvious thing, competing in their chosen sport (or any other, for that matter) for money.
I view things like this as a silly relic of the past, whether they are in the Olympics, college sports or anywhere else.
Another thing that would help is to get rid of most of the events that have been added in the past bunch of years. Generally I think they should get back to the Olympic roots and only sports of individuals testing their physical abilities should be in the games. Almost no team sports (baseball, basketball, field hockey, hockey, soccer) or anything that uses motorized vehicles (waterskiing). Bowling, curling and table tennis take skill but come on. Reminds me of that commercial "Couch potato - Professional athlete (with the addition of a bowling ball)".
I know that times change but I think the inclusion has hurt more than helped. With so many events to cover it seems like for TV stations (especially the US stations) they are stuck in analysis paralysis on what to cover so they cover almost nothing and what they do cover is not done well.