Yes, I have an opinion or two about this year's summer Olympics. And maybe you do, too.
The bidding process is long and rigorous. Back in 2007, seven cities put in their bids to be the host city for the 2016 Olympics. From those, the final four were selected - and Rio was deemed the best in terms of funding the expenses of the Olympics, housing athletes and tourists adequately, supporting the event with new venues and stadiums, AND maintaining a highly positive media exposure to carry the games.
There is the issue of filthy water - and here's a quote from CBC on August 3:
"Finding bodies isn't unusual. Often it's an animal. About once a week, it's a human. Decaying remains, fetid sewage and floating garbage in Rio de Janeiro's waterways are fuelling worries about water safety ahead of the Olympics. Seven years after being awarded the Olympics, the massive seaside city has only managed to decrease, but not end, the dumping of garbage and untreated sewage into its waterways.
These are the same waterways where some Olympic rowers and sailors will now compete. Worse yet, where the open-water swimmers will charge into the water to swim 10 kilometres. The best advice they've been given: Keep your mouth closed."
There is the issue of doping. First up before the Olympics even began, there was Russia. The investigation of Russia's doping scandal advanced this last year, revealing a detailed a state-run doping scheme that punctured the integrity of the Olympics, seemingly upending many of the results from the 2008 Beijing Games, the 2012 London Games and the 2014 Sochi Games. And so, the entire field and track team from Russia was banned from the 2016 Olympics. (You can read the long horrible story in a New York Times article here.)
But it wasn't over yet. Now the Olympics have been plunged into yet another doping scandal, after the head of the Kenyan track and field team was caught in an undercover sting offering to tip off athletes over the timing of drugs tests.
After participating in the torch ceremony, a beautiful female jaguar, named Juma, was shot and killed by a soldier. I honor her grace and magnificence here, with her photo. (Read the story, here.)
There are questions about the shoddy construction of buildings in Olympic Village - the Olympic Park’s massive super store loaded with souvenirs and merchandise for spectators was forced to shut down due to high winds. The store was reportedly built with large vinyl walls, which were subject to punishment from the wind, and several other temporary structures were battered around the park.
Duck and cover, anyone?
The housing problems are clear and strong on Twitter. Numerous athletes from all over the globe have been subject to haphazard or outright incomplete housing since they arrived in Rio. The Olympic Village has become a gold mine of tweets from Olympians attempting to fix up their lodgings, leaky bathrooms and all.
It makes it hard to enjoy to enjoy the Olympics with these issues looming, along with the security issues, and I didn't even mention Zika...
I have to wonder how Rio was considered more worthy than Tokyo, Prague, or Madrid. It's sad for Rio, it's sad for the Olympians, and it's unfortunate for the public.
I sincerely hope that future Olympic sites will not be chosen with the kind of mindlessness that landed Olympians in Rio. If there is a sewage problem - eliminate the city! If there are enormous slums and destitute economy - eliminate the city! Pay attention, people. It isn't so hard to predict the future if you take the time to consider the depth of current situations.
Unless, of course, there's a scandal of some sort involved in the selection process.
That's my Olympian opinion, at least.