The Olympic traditions and games have begun. For over four years the world has watched and waited for the next Winter Olympics to begin and now we are here. Vice President Mike Pence has joined the American delegation with his wife and a select few other American representatives. But that has not stopped controversy and drama from going on.
The U.S. Olympic Committee had decided how to choose who is going to be the American flag bearer in the opening ceremony. They ultimately chose to make the decision by a coin toss. When speed skater Shani Davis, who is African American, lost the toss he became a poor sport about it claiming it was racist. To lick his wounds he decided to boycott and not show up to the opening ceremony.
Patriot Beat reported,
“Well, the olympian who DID hold the flag, Erin Hamlin is speaking out and she has something to say to Shani David “TOO BAD.” American luger Erin Hamlin said it was “too bad” that there was disappointment about her carrying the United States’ flag at the Winter Olympics opening ceremony and that any athlete would have felt honored to accept the task.
Bronze medalist Hamlin was awarded the flag over Shani Davis by the toss of a coin, angering the twice Olympic champion speed skater who became the first black athlete to claim an individual medal in 2006.
The flag-bearer is chosen by a vote of the eight U.S. winter sports federations but the result was tied at 4-4 between Hamlin and Davis and a coin was used to break the tie, in keeping with United States Olympic Committee (USOC) rules. “I just was enjoying the moment (at Friday’s opening ceremony); I was just honored to be nominated as one of the eight people that were put into the mix,” Hamlin told Reuters at the Olympic Sliding Centre on Saturday.
”Just getting that far was an amazing thing and I think it’s too bad that there is that much disappointment around not getting it but I had no part in it. “I had no control in it but I was just honored that there were athletes that felt I deserved that. “I just was living in the moment, enjoying it. I just hope I represented my team mates well. I don’t think there’s a single athlete that would turn that down.” Hamlin, who will retire after the Games, became the first American female luger to win an Olympic medal when she won bronze in Sochi four years ago. Davis had tweeted that the coin toss was a “dishonorable” method to decide and added the hashtag “BlackHistoryMonth2018”, suggesting racial bias was involved. He declined to march at the opening ceremony.”
The Daily Mail reported,
“In an earlier interview with ABC News, Hamlin echoed the sentiment, saying she ‘had nothing to do’ with how the flag carrier was chosen. Hamlin said before the opening ceremony: ‘I actually didn’t know any of the details, so I’m really not even paying too much attention to it.’It has nothing to do with me aside from the fact that I am the flag bearer and I’m going to enjoy the moment and represent my teammates and my country as well as I can.’
Hamlin beamed a broad smile as she led out the athletes competing at the games in South Korea to the accompaniment of ‘Gangnam Style’. Davis, 35, a five-time Olympian who has won two gold medals and two silver medals, lost after a vote among sports federations represented at the games ended in a draw. A U.S. speed skating spokesman said Davis had not originally planned to march in the parade of nations later on Friday, but would have made an exception if he had been chosen as flag-bearer.’Shani won’t march in the parade. It was never part of his plans. He is fully focused on his first race and is concentrating on that,’ the spokesman said. In an angry tweet, Davis, took a shot at Hamlin, the holder of a single bronze medal.”
This issue seems like such a silly problem to talk about when in reality people should be talking about the games and the performances of our American competitors. All of this is petty, trivial, nonsense. Being a part of the American delegation period is an honor in itself so why someone would decide to be a pre-madonna about it is baffling. It simply shows a lack of gratitude.
The coin toss and the result had nothing to do with racism or the ethnicity of one of the athletes during the toss. It had to do with luck. To somehow bring racism into is nothing more than ridiculous and to throw that word out their degrades the value and the meaning of it. People die because of racism so to somehow insinuate this controversy was racist is nothing but shameful and ridiculous.
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