Bob Costas Was Ethnocentric At Opening Ceremonies Of Winter Olympics
It was as if Bob Costas recycled the same remarks from the 2006 Winter Olympics. Once again Bob Costas was not respectful to the Olympic spirit of sportsmanship and endless possible dreams for all the athletes who entered the stadium during the roll call of nations. Almost from the beginning Costas mentioned that some countries had no chance of winning a medal. In the case of Jamaica, Costas remarked they “will not be much of a factor.’ Those comments are just demeaning to smaller nations with the same Olympic dreams as the larger ones.
In other words Bob Costas was saying ‘thanks for showing up.’ That the other athletes from nations with less national resources, or corporate sponsorship might not somehow show the world a medal winning performance is not just shoddy sports journalism, it also reeks of an ethnocentric mindset that Costas has shown before. That it is wrong to make such statements is obvious. The Olympic ideal trumps nationalism and world politics. It is supposed to be the place where the human spirit is on display, and the individual abilities are tested. To count athletes out before the games started is a shallow way to broadcast an event. It is also a misguided way of looking at the world.
Not only did Bob Costas make remarks about national teams as they entered the stadium, but he also took a swipe at Brazil’s President Lula da Silva. There is no need to politicize the games, especially in the broadcast of the opening ceremonies. Whatever comments Lula had made concerning Brazil’s upcoming summer games did not warrant a reply from Costas. It was another sign that Costas does not know when to shut the microphone off and just watch the events unfold.
Finally, in another case where nationalism trumped fairness was the lack of national exposure to the Republic of Uzbekistan when they entered the stadium. With multiple cameras following the American team that preceded Uzbekistan into the stadium there was only a mention that the Central Asian nation had entered. There was no visual evidence they were even there. All America, all the time is not the Olympic spirit. Instead it is an ethnocentric way of looking at the world.
And it is wrong.
I am hoping that one of the nations Bob Costas belittled on the NBC broadcast will open a can of whoop-ass in the next 16 days and make someone eat crow.
After hearing multiple hours of Bob Costas I am yearning for a C-SPAN version of the Olympics without the insipid remarks of broadcasters.