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February 22nd, 2010
10:25 AM ET

Olympic spirit fails a test

Greene: Vancouver Olympic athletes should have demanded an apology for 'repugnant' statement on Georgian luger's death.

Greene: Vancouver Olympic athletes should have demanded an apology for 'repugnant' statement on Georgian luger's death.

Bob Greene
CNN Contributor

It would have been one of the most memorable moments in the history of the Olympic Games.

It wasn't to be - it's probably unrealistic to think that it could have happened.

But what a message it would have sent.

Think what the response of the world would have been if, in the wake of that repugnant official statement blaming 21-year-old luge athlete Nodar Kumaritashvili for his own death during a practice run, all of the more than 2,500 athletes from 82 countries at the Winter Games had stood together and announced, in polite and respectful tones:

We will not compete in these Olympics until the organizing committee issues a public apology for what they have done to the memory of our fellow athlete.

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Filed under: Olympics
soundoff (4 Responses)
  1. Maria H-Miami

    I agree with your point of view. I read he had 26 runs on the Whistler Track and had competed in 5 World Cup events this season so he was not an amateur or unfamiliar with the track. So whose the moron that designed those steel posts without padding?

    February 22, 2010 at 5:23 pm |
  2. skippy

    THE OLYMPIC COMMITTEE is OMNIPOTENT! they do not make mistakes!
    Unfortuneately there will be some athletes at the "Closing Ceremony" and they will agree with your point of view but will risk censure by their NOCif they voice their feelings!
    Sport is dangerous and we have heard from a relative of the Athlete's fears but there were choices and he made the wrong choice, point of fact there were other crashes with less serious results fortuneately!
    No Athlete will speak out as they will be rubbished by management and it will be the deathknell of their career!
    RIP Nodar, you will be remembered by the world

    February 22, 2010 at 1:03 pm |
  3. Denise Barlow

    "We will not compete in these Olympics until the organizing committee issues a public apology for what they have done to the memory of our fellow athlete."

    Could you even imagine the shockwave that would have hit the worldwide Olympic community had the athletes done this? I would have stood up in the middle of my livingroom and given them a standing ovation.

    February 22, 2010 at 12:32 pm |
  4. Tim Gibson

    All the things that were done to "change" or make more safe on the course are not unlike all the changes we have had even in our automobiles as the result of mistakes on the road by drivers. But then again that is what has given us warning labels on products that are common sense things we all should know as well.

    February 22, 2010 at 10:55 am |