Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Calls for An Olympic Boycott Just Plain Stupid

As calls mount for nations to boycott the Beijing Olympics later this year due to the violence in Tibet, I am left wondering: I thought the Olympics was supposed to transcend politics and thus why are we holding them hostage to politics?

Look, the violent crackdown in Tibet is (1) shameful and (2) nothing new. So why are we in an uproar over it now? Oh, because if we go to the Olympic games, we give "credence" to the Chinese Regime? How successful have boycotts been in the past? Did the U.S. boycott of the 1980 Olympics in Moscow get the Soviet Union out of Afghanistan? No, getting their butts kicked got the Soviets out of Afghanistan? Did the retaliatory boycott of the 1984 Olympics change anything? Nope. Is there any reason to expect that a boycott of the Beijing games will change anything? No.

The best thing to do is go to the Olympics and do like Jesse Owens did, show the falseness of the host nation's premise. If you boycott the games, the issue will eventually die down as there will be no continued media presence to push the issue. But if you attend the games, the media attention will include a focus on Tibet. China can't afford to have to censor all the worldwide media--particularly from Western nations.

Hold the light of media scrutiny up and you will get better results. Don't pariticpate and you get status quo.

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