above photo is from the 1968 olympics in mexico. during the 200 meter gold medal ceremony the african american athletes tommie smith and john carlos performed their famous power to the people salute. 40 years ago.
well, times surely have changed since.
i was convinced there would be at least one athlete during the olympics in china, that would show his solidarity with tibet or protest against the scandalous human rights situation in china. but as it turns out not one of them did (unless it did happen but was kept under the radar). almost 1000 medals were handed out, but not one ceremony was used to stage a protest.
on the contrary. when asked about these issues most athletes prefered to demonstrate their political ignorance by saying really stupid things in interviews. like swiss cyclist and gold medal winner fabian cancellara, who embarassed himself – and us – by saying, that there were more important issues than human rights. oh? like what? what is more important than human rights, sherlock? maybe how to get away with doping without getting caught? or maybe is it more important to prove to the world, that all the drugs really have bombed your brains out?
i have to admit, i did not see this interview with cancellara myself. but my sister told me about it, and she is usually quite good at quoting things correctly. she also told me, that she was his elementary school teacher and as such feels embarassed, like anyone involved in his scholastic education should be.
thank god there is photoshop to save the day. here’s usain bolt sporting a tibetan flag during the 4 x100 m gold medal ceremony.