Did I hear it right? Are the French going to protest the Chinese murder of innocent Tibetans by staying away from the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics? Just the opening? And then, on with the fun?
And am I further hearing Americans debating straight-facedly whether or not that's too severe a sanction? We dare not provoke the Chinese. This is beyond psychedelic.
One staggering punch a boxer might absorb. You're giving me two. One; that simple news about boycotting the opening (just the opening!) of the Olympics. For me the much harder punch is the utter absence of shock, ridicule, satire, admonishment or even astonishment at this proposed pattern of punishment to those who continue to kill dissidents and innocents, if possible less publicly than they slaughtered thousands of their own very young people in Tiananmen Square for building a paper-mache Statue of Liberty and demanding democracy for the Chinese people.
This makes even Jimmy Carter look good; good and tough and a stand-up guy for freedom. At least as president, Carter boycotted the whole Olympics stem to stern when they were in Moscow one scant year after the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan.
Boycotting the opening! That's roughly like the bride, offended by some truly horrible action of her groom-to-be, looking him in the eye and sternly declaring, "I will proceed with the marriage. I will accompany you on the honeymoon. But on our wedding night — let me make this clear — out of protest for your vile actions I will keep my shoes on throughout the entire proceedings!"
As long as we're talking tough and threatening our absence at the Open, why not go all the way and cancel China's membership in the Book of the Month Club?
First of all, I'd like personally to sanction the sonovabitches who made it possible for the Olympics to be held in a dictatorship like Communist China in the first place. Placing the Olympics in Hitler's Nazi Berlin in 1936 was enough to last the world in perpetuity. Politicizing the Olympics is a great idea, provided freedom gets there first.
All those from decent countries involved should unite in an unwritten understanding never to award the Olympics to a dictatorship; just like they never used to award the crown of Miss Alabama to anybody who was pregnant. No dictatorship should under any conditions be allowed to host the Olympics. We have 500 percent more democracies in the world now than we had when the Nazis hosted the Olympics in 1936. Let's use them.
What are free people saying to the butchers of Beijing when they threaten to boycott the opening — and nothing more — of the Olympics? Does this make tyranny tremble? Does this make them say, "We'd better pull back. They're getting their backs up and growling?" Quite the contrary.
They know we have a Declaration of Independence from 1776. Now they know we also have a "Declaration of Impotence" in 2008. Sanctions are supposed to make the sanctionees quake in their boots. I defy you to show me a single Chnese boot that's been quaked in.
I have a dream! I dream that the atheletes of the world themselves get together and declare, "We're not going to any dictatorship to play games by the rules when the rulers of those dictatorships themselves violate the very rules of civilization. Communist China since before its final victory and official inception has long been guilty of the world's worst case of unsportsmanlike conduct. We'll have no part of competing there!"
Explain to me, please, what makes the Olympics so sacred. I've heard, "Oh, the athletes have worked so hard!" Don't use that one on me. The anti-Nazis in Berlin in 1936, the anti-communists in Afghanistan in 1979 and the freedom-lovers in China in 2008 have also worked hard, very hard to rid their lands of tyrants and establish a decent place for themselves and their loved ones. And failure for them doesn't mean they have to settle for a silver medal or a bronze or nothing at all. It means imprisonment, brutality and extermination.
I wish upon Communist China every single disappointment, failure, calamity and collapse possible in their Great Debut to the World, which is how their side billed their dream for this year's Olympics. God's favorite melody is the anguished cries of foiled dictators. May their tribe increase, along with the volume of their wailing!
And as for our side, I actually heard one of those "left versus right" moments on cable TV in which the rightist said, go ahead and boycott the opening of the Olympics and the guy on the left was like a nudist crossing a barbed-wire fence fearful that even that was too much of a provocation in today's delicate world! Good thing I heard it. If you'd told me about it, I wouldn't have believed you.
America today has much in common with that Southern preacher whose sermons were oversteaming with hatred and condemnation of sin. So much so, it seems, that the congregation began to get a little antsy and collection plates were getting easier and easier to carry on Sunday mornings.
` The church elders approached the preacher and said, "Look. We're with you. We all hate sin. But a lot of the congregation are taking it personally. Could you maybe try to find a way, you know, to punch a little more gently."
"Sure, I can," declared the preacher.
The very next Sunday he came out waved his arms and bellowed, "Ye who have sinned — after a fashion; must repent — as it were — or be damned — to an extent!"
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