Olympic-Sized Embarrassment

Note: Sorry about the lack of new posts over the past couple of days, but I’ve been busy with some things, I’m back now, though, as you can see by this post, there is not much in the political world worth writing about at the moment, not unless you want to hear how many congressmen have earmarked projects relating to fruit and meat research in their own districts.

More than once over the past few days, protesters have tried to prevent the Olympic torch from completing its route, many arming themselves with fire extinguishers or buckets of water to try to put out the flame. Those attempts to extinguish the flame forced Paris officials to…extinguish the flame. Via AP:

PARIS – Security officials canceled the final run of the Olympic relay through Paris after chaotic protests Monday, sending a snuffed-out torch to its destination on a bus in a humiliating concession to protesters decrying China’s human rights record.

The bus stopped right outside the final stop, a stadium, so a runner could finish the last 15 feet of the relay.

The olympic flame has, to my knowledge, only ever been put out twice before – once in Canada because of rain, and once in Athens, because of wind, never has it been forced to be extinguished because of protests.

But I can’t say I blame the protesters. While I’m not sure I support those who have tried to put out or grab the torch, the IOC was extremely stupid to pick one of the world’s most oppressive governments to host the Olympics.  I have to agree with the protesters when they say the Olympics are being held in the “world’s largest prison.”

These Olympics, particularly the torch relay, were supposed to be a kind of welcome for China into the developed world, and was supposed to highlight its’ political and economic power. So far, however, they have become an opportunity people to attack China’s terrible record on human rights, and maybe thats the way it should be – it might send a message to the IOC.


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