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Olympics:The Balance Between Sportsmanship and Economy.
  • By Park Hyun-jong, reporter
  • 승인 2022.03.02 08:51
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▲The Olympic torch of Beijing Olympics is lighting.(Source : Beijing Olympic Committee)

The Olympics are the largest sporting event of mankind and they are the world’s most recognized global competition. Since the first Olympics held in Athens, Greece, during ancient times, the Summer and Winter Olympics have been held every four years respectively. Any country can participate in the games. From the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, emphasizing on Ensemble, made an addition to the mottos of the Olympics with, “Faster, Stronger, and Higher.” The Olympics aim for world peace and its athletes compete with admirable inclusive sportsmanship, regardless of ideology or race. Ironically, the Olympics had even sometimes caused war and were used for dictatorship or political propaganda. For example, there are also voices of criticism that the Olympics were originally advocating amateurism, however, the current Olympics are focusing on commercialization too much. Furthermore, as the Olympics have a Host Nation System, the host country provides sports stadiums and dormitories for athletes, which are economically supported by the country itself, which entails enormous economic and social expenditures. As a result, it has become a festival only for rich; developed nations. In particular, the integrity of the Olympic Committee is also raising concerns, as governments from candidate host countries, lobby the Committee during the process of selecting the Olympic Host Nation.

Due to the fact the Olympics are an event that the whole world is paying attention to, third world countries and developing countries are eager to train athletes, by spending a lot of money in the name of improving Olympic ranking for national prestige. Even Russia, convicted of doping their athletes, just to elicit better performances. This shows how the Olympics are being used as a nationalist podium for political propaganda. We listened to the opinions of Ahn Jang-hoon, a student at CWNU, on these 2022 Olympic Games.

Q: Please introduce yourself.

Ahn: I'm Ahn Jang-hoon, Majoring in Electronic Engineering since 2016.

Q: Are you interested in the recent Beijing Winter Olympics?

Ahn: I'm a big fan of any kind of sporting event, so I like to be a spectator of the Olympics and the World Cup. However, indeed, I am not as interested as I used to be because of COVID-19.

Q: What is the difference between the Olympics before the coronavirus outbreak and the current Olympics, during the coronavirus outbreak?

Ahn: Before the pandemic, face-to-face communications between people were necessary, and athletes were dispatched to the Host Country on a large scale. As exchanges decreased during the pandemic, the number of countries participating in the Olympics is not the same as before. As a result, sponsors are not able to advertise as they wanted, so it is expected that the number of sponsors will decrease as well. Additionally, I am worried that the games are conducted without spectators, so expenses from building facilities can’t be retrieved. Those losses are going to affect the host nation.

Q: What do you think about the current Olympics, as they are being criticized for being too consuming, used as a method of exercising political agendas of participating countries, invoking enormous facility costs, and causing environmental destruction?

Ahn: As far as I know, there are no cases of profit from the Olympics. Of course, there may be added value for the nation's status. However, both summer and winter Olympics require large stadiums and athletes' dormitories that can accommodate many spectators and athletes. In the case of athletes' dorms, they can be sold to the general public after the purpose of the accommodation is over. However, it is unclear that we will be able to use the Olympic-related facilities as sporting facilities, even after the Olympics are concluded. However, I agree with hosting international events if many countries desiring to be the host are given the opportunity, and local residents are also in favor of hosting the Olympics. The Olympics Committee strictly evaluates and selects countries that can afford these huge costs.

The Olympic Committee should transparently manage the selection and operation of the Host Country to prevent complaints from other countries. Additionally, it is natural to expect economic effects through the Olympics, but it is necessary to look back on the overly commercialized and productized Olympics market. Sportsmen and sportswomen from around the world participate in the Olympics. In order to achieve their goals, they have made unimaginable efforts for four years to be the best. It is hoped that the Olympics lasts long with the spirit of the Olympics to give more athletes opportunities to attain their dreams.

By Park Hyun-jong, reporter  tommyhil4444@gmail.com

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