Monday, March 1, 2010

Dear Channel 9..

Dear Channel 9,

I find your comments towards Ghana’s Kwane Nkrumah-Acheampong quite disrespectful and appalling. Who gave you the right to judge who is, or is not, good enough to be an olympian? Should we eliminate the little man, the hard luck case, and all the underdog’s of the world?

What gives you, and fellow Aussie olympians, the right to judge another man or women based on the size of their country, the color of their skin, and the speed in which they can or can not perform? I expected better Channel 9. Australia isn’t known for it’s amazing glory in the winter olympics, yet fellow Australians stand beside them and cheer them on for better or worse, and I’ve yet to see a country say they aren’t worthy of being permitted the right to perform.

What makes Kwane any different? Is it because he’s only been training in this sport for 6 years? Is it because he’s from a country that doesn’t have an outdoor ski slope? Is it because he finished 21 seconds behind the winner? Or is it because Grant Hackett said so? Shame on you Grant. Just because you were born in a country with sporting privileges, a country that is willing to financially support you doesn’t give you the right to condemn another Olympian to take a hike just because in your opinion he’s not good enough.

Since when don’t we need the likes of ‘The Snow Leopard” “Eddie The Eagle” & “The Sealion”, should we also exclude teams from other small, underfunded, war torn countries? Does this mean we should exclude those who can put you to shame simply because they have more courage, dignity, maturity, and above all Olympic Spirit then you? Unfortunately for you Mr Hackett, we need the little guys, the underdogs, and the hard luck cases. They are the teams the give us hope, they are the teams and individuals that encourage us to try harder. It’s the little guys with stories of inspiration and hope that make the olympics so worth watching.

Oh, yes, I expected so much more from those of you who are and were Olympians. The same Olympians who can stand there and defend under age drinking just because a gold medal was won stood there and told a man his dream was no good simply because he wasn’t fast enough. Shame on you. Channel 9 it might be time you understood that not every country is as privileged as Australia and it’s countrymen are.

Not every country has the funds to sponsor the teams and athletes. Not every country has sports universities and training facilities. Should we condemn them to life outside the olympics because of it? Should we tell them they aren’t good enough simply because fellow Olympians say so? Not only did you show your own stupidity, you helped a few Aussie Olympians show their true immaturity, lack of integrity, and poor sportsmanship like behavior. Shame on you Channel 9 for even asking the question!

Ps: Channel 9, while you were busy doubting the rights of one man to carry out his dreams, while you sat there and said he wasn’t good enough, Kwame reached his goal. He finished a race 30 other, far more experienced, skiers couldn’t. He stayed on his feet and reached the bottom which is more then the reigning world champion or even Brodie Miller could do. If only you had as much dignity, maturity, and true olympic spirit as Kwame didChannel 9, then maybe you’d understand why we need these underdogs...

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