Pierre de Coubertin, a French Baron who is regarded as the founder of the modern Olympics, asserted that “The important thing in the Olympic games is not to win, but to take part; the important thing in life is not triumph, but the struggle…” Since the modern Olympic games started in Athens in 1896, the games, as much as sport as a whole, became more than just about participation – it is a reflection of us and our societies. The utopian ideal that winning comes second to sportsmanship has long been discarded, setting winning medals as the ultimate goal - preferably gold. It brings with it national pride, international recognition, celebrity status and monetary reward. Obsession with winning led to cheating via the abuse of performance enhancing drugs not only by individuals, but also through state sponsored programs.
The nationalistic nature of our world
For some it is all about winning, saluting the national flag and singing the national anthem. For others, it is about the inclusiveness and human endeavor to improveYossi Mekelberg