Some time ago, on January 1, 404 CE to be exact, the last gladiator fight took place. The Roman Emperor, Honorius, had decreed the end of gladiatorial contests a few years earlier, but without Smartphones and the Internet, it took a while to come into effect.
Honorius would be saddened to learn that these horrendous fights are back. They are now known as the Olympic Games.
In the twenty-first century, when we should know better, we subject children to the worst kind of abuse. From an early age, the unlucky children, chosen for mental and physical torment, undergo harsh preparations for taking part in these so-called “games”.
In the course of the modern Olympic Games, no less than 10 athletes have died while competing in, or practicing for, their chosen sport. Many more have suffered life-changing injuries. The current games, taking place in temperatures above 33 degrees, have seen a top tennis player taken off the court in a wheelchair while others wondered if they were going to die of heatstroke.
Children and youngsters are robbed of their childhood. They are forced to spend their days training and training and more training, at the expense of a proper education that would fit them for the real world. And for what?
Simone Biles, one of the most talented gymnasts of all time, was forced to withdraw from the team gymnastics competition at the Tokyo Olympics, after just one vault, claiming mental health concerns. She was wise enough to understand that it was not worth jeopardizing her health and wellbeing just to satisfy the crowd’s lust for blood.
The time has come to abolish the Olympic Games. It will not be easy, there are many vested interests hiding behind the games. Once the realm of enthusiastic amateurs, it has been taken over by the professionals. It is no longer sport; it is big business. A recent study found that the sports-related cost of hosting the Olympics is around. $12 billion. The other, non-sports-related costs are much higher. The Japanese government has said that the total spending is more than $20 billion.
Olympic martial arts such as judo, karate and taekwondo will be nothing compared to the fight over keeping the Olympic budget flowing.