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The Dark Side Of The Olympics

907 words - 4 pages

The Olympics are an inspiration to many people. Olympics give young people an opportunity to dream that it could one day be them standing on the podium. They have the power to unite people from around the world to celebrate with pride the achievements of amateur athletes. This all sounds great but there is a dark side to the Olympics that needs to be considered. What used to be a celebration of amateur sport has turned into a commercial enterprise that caters to the interests of the wealthy and big business over the average citizen. The Olympics are really an insider event as obtaining tickets to the events and hotel accommodations is something that is difficult for the average family with the incredibly high prices. The Olympics Games organizers promise protection of civil liberties, financial accountability, environmental sustainability, and that the poor would not face evictions or rent increases. However none of things promises have been delivered on.
The International Olympic Committee does everything in their power to protect the rights of its sponsors; unfortunately they do not feel the same way about free speech or democratic rights. Rule 51of the IOC Olympic Charter does not allow any “demonstration or political, religious or racial propaganda in any Olympic sites, venues or other areas. Also unfortunate are the municipal and provincial governments going right along this by pushing their own bylaws that go too far. The provincial government passed Bill 13 which would employees of Richmond, Vancouver and Whistler to enter private homes and properties to remove any unauthorized signs. The security budget has grown considerably from the ridiculously low original number of 175 million to one billion.
The widening of the Sea to Sky highway from Vancouver to Whistler was essential to Vancouver being awarded the games and has no doubt made the road safer for visitors and people who use the road regularly, however this has caused considerable environmental destruction at Eagle Ridge Bluffs. This resulted in the loss of an estimated 4,800 trees along with a kilometre of wetlands destroyed along with the loss of habitat for endangered species. Both the provincial and municipal governments knew from their own report that if the highway went through a sensitive and unique zone would be gone. There were other options to this that should have been given more consideration such as tunnel or just making improvements to the current road along with more police enforcement to make sure that people drive safely. The 2010 Olympics will produce 268,000 tonnes of carbon emissions which is approximately the same as putting an extra 53,600 cars on the road...

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