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Saluting the Losers

A true Olympic farewell

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Visitor Comments: 14

(14) Phil, March 15, 2010 2:02 PM

Placing dead last!

I’m from Venezuela, four years ago, TORINO 2006, Two Venezuelans did the Bobsledding. They both placed dead last. They were True Heroes back home. They both live and train in the states. Actually one of them was a 52 years old Professor from ISU. 20 million people back home cheer from them like they Won Gold medal.

(13) Beth Gibson, March 3, 2010 6:29 PM

Teaching one's Child

My late husband's family is very competitive. They do not even participate in activities in which they may not become the best. As might be expected, they were puzzled when they discovered that I had taught our children that anything worth doing was worth doing badly. It was worth being the worst on the team or in the class, if the activity were worth doing at all. Excellence is to be lauded, and we aren't going to convince the media or their fans to routinely laud the losers. However, as time passes, simply the fact that each of these athletes *made* his or her country's Olympic team will garner them much respect thru'out their lives. Deserved respect. However, in the heat of the moment, some athletes will be dreadfully disappointed. And that cannot be changed, regardless of whether we praise them more or not. Rollo May said that he never underwent psychotherapy because he feared that the process might destroy his angels alongside his devils. For the Olympic athletes, I believe this is most true. We cannot have these wonderful young people, gifted in mind and body and circumstance, strive for excellence with all their hearts, and them expect them not to be crushed when, in their eyes, they did not achieve excellence. It truly is the agony of defeat and only time and maturity will lessen their disappointment. Our quiet appreciation of their efforts will assist.

(12) Anonymous, March 3, 2010 3:09 AM

Right On Rabbi!

As a teacher of children, I continually remind them that perseverance is utmost and reward them accordingly. Thank you.

(11) Tovah Ahdut, March 2, 2010 11:51 PM

Everything is perspective and not taking anything too far. To see young people coming together from all over the world -- most striving to be the best that they can be rather than defeating another is not such a bad idea. Much better than meeting on a battlefield. There ARE atheletes who keep faith, G-d, family and morals at the forefront.

(10) Boli, March 2, 2010 9:20 PM

Sports is Competition-like it or not

Nice ideals and theory but it's totally impractical to reward the loser, the one who came in last? Please. How would you have sports then? Give a trophy to the Super Bowl loser? No matter what they won't get the ultimate trophy. So, the message doesn't really fit reality. Sure, we need to let everyone strive for the best and give them praise for that but you'll never, nor should you ever get rid of rewarding the best.

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