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Old 02-21-2010, 02:22 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Americans competing in the Olympics representing other countries.

My personal viewpoint is that you should compete for the country you call home and permanently reside in. As it turns out, there are several Americans competing in the Olympics representing other countries merely because a partner was needed in that country, or it was easier to qualify, or they weren't able to make it here.

I'm not terribly fond of this trend. Kind of defeats the purpose of the games in my opinion.

What do you think?
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Old 02-21-2010, 02:46 PM   #2 (permalink)
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I agree. I've noticed the same thing, two Russians were skating for Germany, an asian girl was skating for Russia, a Canadian was in the mogals for Australia, etc. The same for some of the coaches. There was one coach in figure skating who represented about five different skaters from all different countries (he had to keep switching jackets every performance), and one of the American skaters had a Canadian coach. I know the days of amateur Olympics are gone but at this rate soon there will be an entry draft. They mentioned that Shaun White makes about 8 million a year riding his snowboard, granted the guy is phenomenal but how does that work? I know, I'm just jealous, should have been a rock star right?

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Old 02-21-2010, 03:00 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The Asian girl is Japanese and she moved to and became a Russian citizen several years ago.

The one that really got me upset is an American girl skating for Georgia. According to the skating commentators, she has never even been to that country, the Georgian president fast-tracked her citizenship application through just so she could skate and she reportedly has said that "she is looking forward to visiting her new country this summer."

Doesn't that mean that she has renounced (given up) her US citizenship? The last time I checked, the US does not allow dual-citizenship, (although some countries do) so she should need a passport from her new country to return to the US and a visa in order to stay for any length of time. Might be something for this athletes to think of....

It's been a number of years since I checked on this, so this might have changed.

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Old 02-21-2010, 03:10 PM   #4 (permalink)
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While I don't like American citizens representing other nations at the Olympics, it is probably the only way they would every realize their Olympic dream. If there is a position on another team, what does it hurt? (so long as the other country supports the cost of their training)

As to dual citzenship for Americans, it is discouraged, but not forbidden.

http://travel.state.gov/travel/cis_p.../cis_1753.html
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Old 02-21-2010, 03:11 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I disagree. If you are an athlete and you can get to the Olympics through one nationality or another then do it.

Take a look at the Canadian who didn't like the way his coaches questioned his dedication. He decided to compete for Australia and won gold. It wasn't that he couldn't make it. There are many reasons to chose which flag to compete under. If you have a choice why not chose the best choice for you.

There are many people that have dual nationalities. I do.

As for the Olympics being for amateurs, it is a joke. Has been for decades. If the athletes weren't outright professionals they were state sponsored athletes. Not much of a difference.

Introducing things like tennis and golf into the Olympics, when the athletes are all on professional tours, totally cheapens the brand. It's all about money.

But I don't see a way to make it truly amateurs when you also have mega money from endorsement deals.

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Old 02-21-2010, 04:06 PM   #6 (permalink)
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I disagree. If you are an athlete and you can get to the Olympics through one nationality or another then do it.

Take a look at the Canadian who didn't like the way his coaches questioned his dedication. He decided to compete for Australia and won gold. It wasn't that he couldn't make it. There are many reasons to chose which flag to compete under. If you have a choice why not chose the best choice for you.

There are many people that have dual nationalities. I do.

As for the Olympics being for amateurs, it is a joke. Has been for decades. If the athletes weren't outright professionals they were state sponsored athletes. Not much of a difference.

Introducing things like tennis and golf into the Olympics, when the athletes are all on professional tours, totally cheapens the brand. It's all about money.

But I don't see a way to make it truly amateurs when you also have mega money from endorsement deals.

Chris
Yes, there are points to be made for either side of the argument. The part I can't get past is this: The Olympics are for countries to compete against one another in a friendly yet competitive environment. You aren't really competing against another country when the representative is from your country. Just the thing I can't get past.
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Old 02-21-2010, 04:20 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Darren, one other factor to consider is that for political reason, athletes may be forced to reside outside their home country.
For example, the Palestinian soccer team has trouble playing in international games because Israel does not let them leave.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/788595.html (kind of old, but still hapens...)

Or they can't live at home for fear of being killed...

http://www.nowpublic.com/sports/thre...-last-72-hours

Lastly, if they want any decent training equipment, other than dirt patches and rocks, they need to find somewhere else to train!

http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2008/04/10/48120.html

It sounds kind of silly, but the reality is that if some athletes want to compete for their home country, they are forced to live elsewhere.

I dont really know the issue's with the winter athletes you guys mentioned, but it may be a bit more complex than Bob Costas cares to go into.

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Old 02-21-2010, 05:31 PM   #8 (permalink)
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It's a complex question. For example Puerto Rico has been fielding their own team since 1948 (even the Boycotted 1980 Moscow Olympics) and they are a part of the United States.

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Old 02-21-2010, 05:40 PM   #9 (permalink)
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I was just watching the men's ski cross qualifying and there is a fellow from California competing for Jamacia to honor his dad (who's from there), who died when he was 14. I think that's cool.

Ray, I probably shouldn't have mentioned the Japanese girl from Russia as I didn't know the circumstances, my bad.

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Old 02-21-2010, 05:45 PM   #10 (permalink)
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I do agree with the OP...but before anyone forms an opinion about particular athletes they should make sure that they know the details of that athletes situation. For example (and I'm not trying to single out any poster) the Canadian that was skiing for Australia. Yes he did have a difference of opinion with his coach about his dedication....but that sprang from when he was in his mid teens and started some kind of internet company (that BTW has since netted him Millions). IMHO you can't fault someone for trying to earn a living. Another example is one of the speed skaters left their home country because they didn't have a speed skating course to train on. Each one of these athletes should be given at least the benefit of the doubt and IMHO individuals should learn the athletes individual situations before they voice their opinion. I'm not saying, I'm just saying.
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Old 02-21-2010, 05:57 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Old 02-21-2010, 05:59 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Ray, I probably shouldn't have mentioned the Japanese girl from Russia as I didn't know the circumstances, my bad. Jim.
I think that she made the move in order to work with and be trained by a Russian coach that she admired. No need for a 'my bad'

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Old 02-21-2010, 06:11 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I disagree. If you are an athlete and you can get to the Olympics through one nationality or another then do it.

Chris
In that case I am going to represent Mexico iin Roman Greco Wrestling.
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Old 02-21-2010, 07:31 PM   #14 (permalink)
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I was just watching the men's ski cross qualifying and there is a fellow from California competing for Jamacia to honor his dad (who's from there), who died when he was 14. I think that's cool.
Jim.
this one is going to be interesting when you have four skiiers per heat and they are all vying for that inside corner on the turns
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Old 02-21-2010, 09:19 PM   #15 (permalink)
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Darren, one other factor to consider is that for political reason, athletes may be forced to reside outside their home country.
For example, the Palestinian soccer team has trouble playing in international games because Israel does not let them leave.

http://www.haaretz.com/hasen/spages/788595.html (kind of old, but still hapens...)

Or they can't live at home for fear of being killed...

http://www.nowpublic.com/sports/thre...-last-72-hours

Lastly, if they want any decent training equipment, other than dirt patches and rocks, they need to find somewhere else to train!

http://www.alarabiya.net/articles/2008/04/10/48120.html

It sounds kind of silly, but the reality is that if some athletes want to compete for their home country, they are forced to live elsewhere.

I dont really know the issue's with the winter athletes you guys mentioned, but it may be a bit more complex than Bob Costas cares to go into.

***EDIT***
I agree that there may be some exceptions. However americans or dual citizens who have never lived in the county that they are representing, I believe is cheap and takes away from the games. If you are from Jamaica and come to america to learn to ski and then compete for your country, Thats great and I have no problem with that. However if you were born in america, went to school in america, learn to ski in america, still live in america but ski for Jamaica because your father lived there when he was young......??????thats a cop out. I personaly have a problem with that.
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:18 PM   #16 (permalink)
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I am not sure if it is a new trend either, I think it is pretty common for US Athletes who are not able to make it on the US team to compete for another country, I can remember a marathon runner years ago competing for Ireland, who I don't think had anyone running marathon at that time.


I think for me a more annoying is in the summer Olympics where it seems every person on the track is living, training, and going to school in the US.

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Old 02-22-2010, 01:26 PM   #17 (permalink)
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They mentioned that Shaun White makes about 8 million a year riding his snowboard, granted the guy is phenomenal but how does that work? I know, I'm just jealous, should have been a rock star right?

Jim.

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Old 02-22-2010, 01:47 PM   #18 (permalink)
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They mentioned that Shaun White makes about 8 million a year riding his snowboard, granted the guy is phenomenal but how does that work? I know, I'm just jealous, should have been a rock star right?
Jim.
Can you imagine being paid to do something you love to do already!! Way to few people are in that position. I would like to get paid to build/race cars or do woodworking, but just am not that good at it. Or in the right place.
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Old 02-22-2010, 01:57 PM   #19 (permalink)
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Can you imagine being paid to do something you love to do already!! Way to few people are in that position. I would like to get paid to build/race cars or do woodworking, but just am not that good at it. Or in the right place.
Yep, many times I've considered a career in woodworking. Unfortunately people don't value woodworking skills like they used to. You can buy a hutch at Ikea for $250, why can't you hand make me one out of solid wood with dovetail jointery for $250? Gets you every time. I was able to get decent money for the high end speaker enclosures I used to build only because they were MDF with solid baffles and the rest was veneer. I was barely making enough to make it worth it but it took up too much time while I was working my day job.

Oh well
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Old 02-22-2010, 02:13 PM   #20 (permalink)
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Yep, many times I've considered a career in woodworking. Unfortunately people don't value woodworking skills like they used to. You can buy a hutch at Ikea for $250, why can't you hand make me one out of solid wood with dovetail jointery for $250? Gets you every time. I was able to get decent money for the high end speaker enclosures I used to build only because they were MDF with solid baffles and the rest was veneer. I was barely making enough to make it worth it but it took up too much time while I was working my day job.

Oh well
Now if only there was a decent woodworking video game out there. We could be rich and celebs.

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Old 02-22-2010, 02:19 PM   #21 (permalink)
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Now if only there was a decent woodworking video game out there. We could be rich and celebs.

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They could introduce us like big time wrestlers!

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Old 02-22-2010, 03:51 PM   #22 (permalink)
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[QUOTE=Darren;2173751]My personal viewpoint is that you should compete for the country you call home and permanently reside in.
QUOTE]


Well, not that I would be competing in the Olympics at my age but although I reside in USA and call it home, I'm still a British Citizen, carry a British passport and am not a citizen of USA. Are you telling my I should not represent my country if I had the chance?

When I was competing in sailing at a high level back in the 1970's there were people trying ANYTHING just to get to the Olympics. One guy even tried to represent the Isle of Man, which is a British dependency but NOT part of the United Kingdom. He failed but I would have done exactly the same thing back then if I had even a worse chance than a snowball in hell.
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Old 02-22-2010, 03:54 PM   #23 (permalink)
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I agree for the most part, but it would never work for some sports, like hockey.
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Old 02-22-2010, 03:57 PM   #24 (permalink)
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Well, not that I would be competing in the Olympics at my age but although I reside in USA and call it home, I'm still a British Citizen, carry a British passport and am not a citizen of USA. Are you telling my I should not represent my country if I had the chance?
To me, it sounds like the USA is your home so you should represent the USA. Doesn't mean you are turning your back on your homeland... just that you are proud to live in and represent the country you now call home.

That's my viewpoint anyway. There are always gray areas and people always like to point them out
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Old 02-22-2010, 03:58 PM   #25 (permalink)
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I agree for the most part, but it would never work for some sports, like hockey.
Sure it would work. There would just be countries that sucked beyond suck and others that couldn't even compete.
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Old 02-22-2010, 04:01 PM   #26 (permalink)
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Just throwing this out there for fun but what if it was a requirement that you were required to be a natural born citizen to represent a country in the Olympics. Yeah yeah, we'd have no Olympians here in the US if that was the case

I just think the Olympics becoming less and less interesting. No longer is it the best a country has to offer. It is the best a Country can afford, steal, or bribe. Maybe it has always been that way but when I was a kid it just seemed more real.
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Old 02-22-2010, 04:14 PM   #27 (permalink)
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I think it's time to introduce womans stripping to the Olympics, since they weren't allowed ski jumping. Might not be a a popular winter sport mind you.
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Old 02-22-2010, 04:20 PM   #28 (permalink)
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[QUOTE=Darren;2174762]To me, it sounds like the USA is your home so you should represent the USA. Doesn't mean you are turning your back on your homeland... just that you are proud to live in and represent the country you now call home.
QUOTE]


I don't think my family and friends back in England would see it that way. My friends here would however understand if I were to represent Great Britain, as you would if you heard my accent, which is not American at all. You can take the man out of the country but you can't take the country out of the man. Just my oipinion.
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Old 02-22-2010, 04:22 PM   #29 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by AC Bill View Post
I think it's time to introduce womans stripping to the Olympics, since they weren't allowed ski jumping. Might not be a a popular winter sport mind you.
Ah, so men do pole vaulting and women do pole dancing?
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Old 02-22-2010, 04:24 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by 2savage View Post

I don't think my family and friends back in England would see it that way. My friends here would however understand if I were to represent Great Britain, as you would if you heard my accent, which is not American at all. You can take the man out of the country but you can't take the country out of the man. Just my oipinion.
I hear ya, I'm not in your situation so I can only speculate what I'd feel so I can only state what I believe.

By the way, at work I hear a different accent every few feet British, German, Chinese, Japanese, Russian, Sweedish, Indian, South African, Spanish, Irish... you name it. I'm one of the few with a NW American accent. I don't even notice anymore.
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Last edited by Darren; 02-22-2010 at 04:30 PM..
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