The 2014 Olympics have come and gone, leaving America feeling restless and defeated. Although the country’s ill-fated Russian relations may have come into play, America still came up short, winning 0 medals in events they usually dominate. Dominate you say?
When I think of the word “dominate,” I ultimately think of power, individualism and (in America’s case) imperialism. Throughout our nation’s history, we have experienced more victories than defeat when playing on the world stage: The Revolutionary War, War of 1812, The Civil War (depending upon which side you were on), WWI, WWII, The Gulf War. The Olympics are no different. Why do you think we have a medal count?
The Olympics are any country’s chance to shine through athletic prowess. Hmm, Russia figured that out real quick. But the United States had other accidental plans, plans of unintentionally showcasing vulnerability and submission. Two character traits the country would rather not show to the rest of the world. Come on, aren’t we supposed to be THE world super power?
Is this a possible foreshadowing of our future world standing? Is this our time to step our of the spotlight and let other nations take the wheel? Who the hell knows, I’m just talking about sports here.
However, our less than stellar performance at this year’s Winter Olympics did bring our country of bit of shame, embarrassment and disappointment. Especially in events we usually (and were expected to) win. But hell, must we always feel the need to win, to gloat and to feel accomplished? Maybe that’s why ESPN, the supposed WORLD wide leader in sports, Olympic coverage was so limited. Isn’t it safe to assume that there would be at least one Olympic athlete making the coveted Top 10 during ESPN’s SportsCenter every night during the Olympic 2 week run?? Maybe that is too much to ask of ESPN, a channel which seemed to be fixated on only AMERICAN sports rather than Olympic athletes who are competing against, I dunno, the WORLD! Sure, fine. The way ice is made more exciting than Lebron’s broken nose.
The reason we are feeling such disappointment right now IS because of the media. Good GOD, the coverage was just so skewed to the point where it almost seemed like we weren’t winning any medals. I wouldn’t say the ridiculous media hype placed on the US Olympic athletes in Sochi was the reason why they lost, but it definitely didn’t help.
Rather than brush off our national disappointment, as Americans we should embrace it. Brushing it off would be the coward’s way out. The United States is a country that prides itself on itself, a nation that has defied all odds by winning independence, practicing foreign diplomacy and building the most fortified military in the world. The United States has the financial ability to send as many athletes as they want to compete on foreign soil among the best in the world. That is an achievement of itself and should bring no disappointment to any country. Well, except for that Olympic ring fiasco…..sorry Russia…..and that guy from Norway eating it during the Opening Ceremony.
The whining and sniffling is a mere spoiled child that is used to getting everything it wants. Let us embrace the change. This disappointment, this change, is something that will make this country stronger, a strength that will make us become more poised in the way we conduct ourselves abroad, the expectations we hold and the outcomes we don’t necessarily desire, but need.
This experienced disappointment would have been ideal if it was the Summer Olympics. Or perhaps this disappointment came at the right time. Slap in the face America. Wake up! Let us share the crown with other countries and rejoice in diversity. What’s the fun in winning all the time anyways? Just ask Michael.