Politics and Sports

Length: 5 Pages 1136 Words

Pierre De Couberton’s ideas of revitalizing the Olympic games was for “sport”, he visioned sports without the infliction of politics. Through the years the reality of his vision has died out and inevitably political issues and ideas began surfacing in the Olympic games just as much as they began appearing in the ordinary sports world. It seemed that the Olympic games got hit with most of the political back draft, mainly do to the large scale involvement of other countries and as such they became a podium for countries. In Martin Barry Vinokur’s book “More Than a Game” he explains the involvement of politics and sports, he distinguishes two countries which have had incredible amounts of political resurgence through sports. It was my belief before reading this book that sports in America has always been effected somewhat by politics, but it came to a total surprise to hear that sports dictated politics and vise versa in other countries. In a world where some people believe sports take as much precedents as education, it seems no wonder that sports could not live without political issues. Vinokur takes Romania and East Germany and begins dissecting how politics have affected sports. One of the most startling fac Continue...

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In my opinion, just because the government of the United States has a belief, punishing the athletes for something they have no control of was a horrible move. The political stance was helped by the American media, who supported the boycott, mainly suggesting the ban would punish the Soviet Union more than anything other then war. The major idea with these countries was "that greater public involvement in sports results in the use of sport for political socialization. This in turn results in athletes becoming more then average, it helps to weed out the "elite athletes from the good ones. Vinokur does a good job putting together his ideas and facts, but in all honesty the book dwells to deep into the nicks and crannies of the countries. They mainly delft with subsidiaries and success in international competition. The fact that Romania began training athletes just as they were getting into kindergarten was scary, and to reiterate the fact that Romania has been so powerful in the medal race in the Olympics was even more surprising. In the political sense after world war 2 both countries contrasted similarly. After early success, the government of these countries began to establish party-controlled sports organizations. This was seen immensely when the United States won the gold in the 1980 Olympics. Sports evoke massive enthusiasm among the population, and the enthusiasm can easily outpour into patriotism. The reason behind this is because the democratic system places a limitation on government control of sports that the communist countries don't face. The United States asked the IOC to move the games from the Soviet Union to another site, but the IOC opposed this.


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