Lost in all the Curiosity hype (which is absolutely hype-worthy) is this little gem of information.
Voyager I is almost at the true edge of the solar system and is thus almost officially in interstellar space. Ever since learning about the Voyager missions in college, I’ve been really excited to see what happens to them. The end-game of both Voyagers is just them floating out of the solar system and reporting back as long as they can.
Very glad to see they’re not forgotten, and that since their launch in 1977 they’re still providing valuable scientific feedback. Woohoo Voyager Mission!
So I’m not that into the Olympics…or at least I don’t seem to be nearly as into it as most other people I know. However, this article caught my eye because I’d heard about the phenomenal achievement of this Chinese swimmer earlier. The headline about her and this sort of faux controversy over her achievement made me read the article with a scowl on my face. I’m fully in the corner of the Chinese on this one; I think the media is ridiculously irresponsibly creating a false sense of controversy when instead they should be praising the achievement of the athlete until any sort of rule-breaking is actually discovered (to that end, there’s no need to stop investigating, but keep your damn suspicious and ridiculous attitude and OPINION to yourself).
And then I came across this part:
Since the 1990s, China has emerged as a serious contender in the Olympics.
The U.S. has maintained its lead over the country in the overall medal count, but China has been steadily closing the gap each year, placing within the top five in the summer Olympics since 1992.
At the Beijing 2008 Olympics, China surpassed the U.S. in gold medals, winning 51 to the U.S.’s 36, and ranking second overall in the medal count, short 10 medals to the U.S.
The U.S. and China are currently tied in first place at the London Olympics with 23 medals each, although China has won four more gold medals than the U.S. so far.
THIS is what gets me pissed off at the Olympics coverage, and why I stopped caring about the Olympics maybe 8 or 12 years ago.
The Olympics is NOT a competition between countries to see who can get the most medals!!!!!
It never has been, and it never should be. It is NOT an international competition in the sense that different nations are competing to see who can get the most medals. It’s not one big country-based tournament. It never has been.
The Olympics are an international competition in the sense that athletes can come together from all parts of the world to compete in a sportsmanlike manner in their respective sports in order to foster camaraderie, sportsmanship, and togetherness via athletics. The goal is not for one country to beat all the others in medal accumulation. It is to appreciate the best of the best in certain eventsno matter where the athlete is from. Sure, I’m going to root for the American athlete most of the time because I’m American, just in the same way that I root for the Mets, Knicks, and Jets because I’m from the New York area, but unlike American professional sports, where defeating all opponents for the championship is indeed the goal, I will happily cheer for any gold-medal-winning athlete from ANY country because the Olympics are about those achievements themselves.
To slander a female Chinese athlete by accusing her of doping when there is zero proof (and she’s actually passed doping tests) is racist, sexist, and using an event designed to foster international cooperation to do just the opposite of that. It’s disgusting.
And that’s why I don’t watch the Olympics. Everyone has turned it into something it’s not.
Except the athletes themselves. And that’s why if I DO watch any Olympics, it will be to cheer on ANYONE who is the best at their event.