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THE OLYMPICS are TOTALLY DEBASED by PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES; LET’S STOP IT! I’ve HAD IT! I WILL NOT ROOT for USA BASKETBALL in THIS OLYMPICS or ANY ONE until the pros are GONE!

This is an extraordinary article in the AP by Paul Newberry on the statements Dwayne Wade of the NBA made in regard to the Olympic Games.  Here is Newberry’s talk on the Wade remarks:

A day earlier, Wade was quoted as saying there should be some compensation for NBA stars who give up a good chunk of their summer to play in the Olympics. *  *  *  “It’s a lot of things you do for the Olympics – a lot of jerseys you sell,” Wade said. “I do think guys should be compensated.”

Come again?  Wade has been selected to be on the USA Olympic Team for the last two Olympics and here he is talking about pay!  He wants to be PAID?  Because he has a special JERSEY?

Unfortunately, Newberry is no better.  He cites a Olympic swimmer that Olympic athletes are exploited:

“Look, what Dwyane Wade said isn’t entirely wrong,” former U.S. Olympic swimmer Gary Hall Jr. told The Associated Press on Thursday. “Maybe he went about addressing the issue clumsily. But the issue he is addressing is real.

“Do the Olympic Games exploit the athlete? Absolutely. Do the Olympic Games exploit patriotism? Absolutely.”

Come again?  Athletes from almost every nation in the world come to the Olympics and they are proud to represent their nation.  They represent every creed, color, nation, tribe and language.  I love the tiny nations with a few athletes coming in the opening ceremonies – little chance for a medal – but they are proud.  One carries their flag.  Sometimes it’s only one or two athletes. Patriotism is not exploited.

Was Harold Abrahams exploited?  Eric Liddell ran for God’s pleasure of the movie is to be believed.  Surely he was exploited.  What about Jesse Owens when he proved there is no master race?  Was he exploited?  Certainly the 1972 US basketball team was not exploited, except by the refs and officials who robbed them of their gold medal.  What about tiny sports that do well, like the 2006 bronze medal curling team (Team Fenson)?  Check out that team photo.  Do they look exploited? How about the time we swept the women’s fencing sabre medals in 2008?  Were they exploited?

The Olympic movement has been exploited all right; when they brought in pro athletes in basketball, hockey and tennis, among other sports.  This Wade fellow has been on our team for TWO prior Olympics!  Our best college basketballers have no chance to represent their nation.  The USA Olympic Team was chosen in 2008 in what is in effect a smoke-filled room by USA Olympic officials:

Following the disappointments in 2002 and 2004, USA Basketball appointed Jerry Colangelo to be solely responsible for selecting the team.

Check out this article about the 2012 team:

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (January 16, 2012) – Eight 2008 Olympic gold medalists, 10 members of the 2010 USA World Championship gold medal winning team, one national team player and one newcomer to the USA Basketball National Team were among the 20 finalists named today for the 2012 U.S. Olympic men’s basketball team by USA Basketball chairman Jerry Colangelo. The official 12-man U.S. Olympic team roster will be announced later this year.

I’ve been against this since 1994; now I’ll make it clear.  That smoke-filled room team of NBA players is not my team.  It does not represent the USA I know and love.  Hence, for here on, I will not support any USA team that is selected in such a fashion from professional athletes.  I’ll root for Puerto Rico instead.  I also urge people to stop giving money to the USA Olympic team unless it is earmarked to a sport like curling or fencing or a particular non-professional athlete.  I’ve had it.  Losing money and games is all they will understand.  Somehow the Olympics have been perverted beyond all recognition.  BUT, the little tiny nations and sports are worth watching, especially the opening ceremonies when the nations of the world are all equal and all have a chance to win or at least bring honor to their nation in world competition.  I’m done.

About Elwood Sanders

Elwood “Sandy” Sanders is a Hanover attorney who is an Appellate Procedure Consultant for Lantagne Legal Printing and has written ten scholarly legal articles. Sandy was also Virginia’s first Appellate Defender and also helped bring curling in VA! (None of these titles imply any endorsement of Sanders’ views)

4 Responses to “THE OLYMPICS are TOTALLY DEBASED by PROFESSIONAL ATHLETES; LET’S STOP IT! I’ve HAD IT! I WILL NOT ROOT for USA BASKETBALL in THIS OLYMPICS or ANY ONE until the pros are GONE!”

  1. lefty891 says:

    Let me preface this comment by saying that I usually read Virginia Right to see what you kooky right-wingers are saying today, that I disagree with. Not so, this time. I agree whole-heartedly that professional athletes should have no place on the Olympic teams. The Olympics is supposed to be a time for the amateur athlete to shine, not a chance for professionals to stoke their egos.
    Yes, it's all about patriotism; and despite what some might think, us Liberals do believe in that.

  2. rtrent13 says:

    What are people thinking? The Olympians represent the best of our countries athletes. Therefore, pros do belong. This is not even really debatable unless you just want to ignore the obvious. Are these gymnasts not pro? the sprinters? the divers? the rowers? the fencers? they seem pretty professional to me. Just because they dont necessarily get the pay and recognition as do the “professional athletes”, they are in no way less professional.
    Wade does have a point, but he is being just like everyone else, money hungry. That doesnt mean he should not be an olympian. The definition of Olympian states superiority. If our best athletes are not competing then we are not being true to the Olympics. OBVIOUS!

  3. Thanks for both of you coming to visit. I would disagree with rtrent13 that fencers etc are pro athletes. Certainly they train in a “professional” manner, e.g., try their best, strive for the best effort. But that is not what I mean: There is no pro league in fencing. There is an NBA. Does a fencer earn their living at fencing? Maybe several of the Olympic fencers coach or give lessons for extra money. But not in the way Serena Williams plays tennis or the “Dream Team” plays basketball.

    Yes there is some events in curling where the winners get prize money. But money of the time it barely covers expenses.

    Thank you lefty891 for coming by and not all liberals are bad! But they need to consider the other way! At least be a libertarian!

    Thanks again!

    Sandy

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  1. […] root for the men’s Olympic basketball team, too (I’m still rooting for Puerto Rico and encourage those who want to support the Olympic team to designate their gifts to such sports as fencing or […]


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