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Amputee runner barred from Olympics

post #1 of 16
Thread Starter 
http://msn.foxsports.com/olympics/st...58380?MSNHPHMA

If the science is there to prove that he's got a "technical advantage," I don't see how anyone can really say otherwise.

Cudos to him for being such a great athlete, but I agree he's in a different class than the regular runners. Just like if someone had a bionic arm, they likely wouldn't be allowed to compete in throwing contests.
post #2 of 16
Assuming they've taken into account the difficulties involved in being an amputee runner- wearing and using the prosthetic blades, the extra mental and physical strain etc- and still ruled that he has an unfair advantage, then I agree with the ruling.

Obviously everyone wants the Olympics to be as fair as possible, so you can't blame them for being tough, other athletes have had morally ambiguous problems, like the guy a couple of years ago who claimed to be a chimera.
http://www.nytimes.com/2005/05/10/he...gewanted=print

I was wondering why they can't just give him blades that don't work quite as well, get rid of his advantage, and let him have his chance for the 2012 olympics
post #3 of 16
i feel for the guy, but well if they say it gives him a mechanical advantage,
then yea, it would not be fair to the other people.
post #4 of 16
He shouldn't be in the Olympics. He's an amputee. It's not being discriminatory. They don't let greyhounds in the Olympics either. They're not open to just anyone who can run. There are criteria. There are categories. And he doesn't fit. There is a para-Olympics in which he would be welcome to compete.

I'm sick of this trying to even the playing field and `PC' everything to the point that there is no such thing as competition anymore. There is no such thing as people being told `no'. There is no such thing as select groups competing against other select groups without being told they're discriminatory.

Pretty soon nobody will actually be able to win an event at the Olympics - in case the people who lost get upset about it. It does my head in.
post #5 of 16
Presumably he was a borderline case though, since they tested him and all, if the tests hadn't shown that he had an unfair advantage should he have been allowed to compete? Or should no-one with prosthetic limbs compete in the Olympics?
Do the Paralympics have the same status in America as the Olympics? Because all the fuss was made (in England) over London hosting the 2012 Olympics, but the Paralympics that follow afterwards were barely mentioned.
If the media and (maybe) the athletes competing in the Paralympics, view it as a lesser event can you blame the athletes for wanting to take part in the Olympics, rightly or not?
Basically, I think the ruling was right, but maybe we should make more of an effort to watch the Paralympic games this year, I know I should.
post #6 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by cata_mint View Post
Basically, I think the ruling was right, but maybe we should make more of an effort to watch the Paralympic games this year, I know I should.
That's a really worthy point. We actually do watch the Paralympics because they're fascinating - from all perspectives including the regular ones of just good competition and athleticism. The problem we find is that they're not really televised - so a lot of our choice is taken away from us.

If I were a disabled athlete or a friend or family member of a disabled athlete, who was good enough to get to the Paralympics, you can bet I'd be so frustrated and angry at that.
post #7 of 16
why Not just hold them at the same?
iknow they often show the winners of Paralympics, why not just, have them added to the Olympics?

besides would make for some good covarge i think
post #8 of 16
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KitEKats4Eva! View Post
He shouldn't be in the Olympics. He's an amputee. It's not being discriminatory. They don't let greyhounds in the Olympics either. They're not open to just anyone who can run. There are criteria. There are categories. And he doesn't fit. There is a para-Olympics in which he would be welcome to compete.

I'm sick of this trying to even the playing field and `PC' everything to the point that there is no such thing as competition anymore. There is no such thing as people being told `no'. There is no such thing as select groups competing against other select groups without being told they're discriminatory.

Pretty soon nobody will actually be able to win an event at the Olympics - in case the people who lost get upset about it. It does my head in.
You realize we agree??? Are you sure this is your final opinion????
post #9 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by neetanddave View Post
You realize we agree??? Are you sure this is your final opinion????
Oh gosh, well, er... um. I'm not sure that I can actually allow myself to agree with you on anything... jeesh, this is embarassing. Um....



Good to have you back, Neet!
post #10 of 16
I'm with the Olympics committee on this one. Now if he took off his prosthetics and did his sprinting, then I would wonder about their rule. However the fact that he has prosthetics that could give him unfair advantage doesn't make him any different than those that would use steriods.
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by lunasmom View Post
I'm with the Olympics committee on this one. Now if he took off his prosthetics and did his sprinting, then I would wonder about their rule. However the fact that he has prosthetics that could give him unfair advantage doesn't make him any different than those that would use steriods.
If he takes them off, how is he going to run? His legs have been amputated.
post #12 of 16
Rules are rules and I'm glad that the Olympics has been rather stringent about it, even if it does limit some good competitors.

Case in point: A friend of mine, in her 40s at the time, had been training very hard on the air-pistol and had tried out for the Olympic team. (Did you even know there are shooting sports at the Olympics??? ) She had actually made the team and was training in Colorado Springs with the team when she was diagnosed with Lupus. Part of the treatment regiment with the Lupus was medicinal steriods. Even though it was definitely for medicinal purposes and with a doctor's supervision and the steriods used in the doses taken would not have given her any advantage whatsoever, she was still disqualified from the team. Is it fair? Doesn't matter. It's the rules, and she knew it. She didn't have to be kicked off the team or wait for some ruling. She went and talked with the team coach and resigned her place on the team. It sucked, but it's the rules and there are no exceptions.
post #13 of 16
I agree Heidi. Too often these days people look for any way to wriggle out of rules, and I think they're too often encouraged to do so. Kids especially. It really irritates me. Sometimes no is no, and sometimes rules aren't made to be wormed out of.
post #14 of 16
I still think, add those games to the normal olympic games. i think it would be great.

lol and yes i know there are shooting sports in the games. I would love to try out myself, I am really sorry for your friend
post #15 of 16
That's a great idea - making them both part of the one Games. I really wish they would do that.

The shooting sports are amongst my favourite to watch - love them, and also the archery.
post #16 of 16
I don't see a problem with that at all.

While on one hand he is considered "disabled", the type of artificial legs that he uses does give him an advantage over those of us who have 2 regular legs to work with.

Without rules the next thing there would be complaints about is the fact that able bodied atheletes are excluded from the disabled olympics because their 2 normal legs give them an advantage over those without legs or those in wheel chairs.

One one hand one can certain claim "not fair", but that is part of life... life is just not fair.

Where competitive sports are concerned, while there are measurements that have to be met in order to qualify, each person who takes those qualifying tests have to be on the same general level of ability to be able to compete with one another (which is also why they break sports up into various levels so that a beginner is not competing against a pro etc). They don't allow the use of metabolic enhancing drugs, so that they can keep the playing field relatively equal for everyone.

To change those rules to allow this man to compete with his special artificial legs which give him an edge over other atheletes without those types of legs, would open up a can of worms.

We would soon see people filing grievances over not being able to use metabolic enhancing drugs, their own specially developed equipment instead of the standard etc.

While not entirely "fair", a line does have to be drawn at some point. And unfortunately for this man, the line will prevent him from competing in able bodied sports.

However, he is a great role model! He shows that just because you have a physical disability that it doesn't have to hold you back in life. He apparently has been competing, unrestricted, in able bodied sports competitions in Africa, and even placing second! That's no small achievement!

Not sure if that makes sense. I'm a bit tired and having a bit of trouble articulating my thoughts.
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