Drug Cheating Openly Mocked at Rio
Doping scandals and drug cheating are, sad but true, often part of recent Olympic media stories. In the past, reports were made about who has been caught doing what and what the Olympic committee has decided to do about the offense. This year, however, there seems to be a new twist: athletes are taking a very public, loud stance against fellow athletes who have been caught doping.
By now many have heard about the controversy within Olympic swimming — more specifically, the rivalry between Lilly King and Yulia Efimova. Efimova, a Russian was punished for previous doping and recently tested positive again, but was allowed to compete. King, a feisty 19 year old American, has publicly criticized Efimova after saying, “You wave your finger No. 1, and you’ve been caught drug cheating? I’m not a fan.”
Other swimmers, such as Michael Phelps have also commented on the injustice of allowing those who have been caught to compete in Rio. This new outward form of criticism is different. In past Olympics, there may have been polite awkward silences, or pausing when the topic was addressed, but now the athletes are speaking up and speaking out against one another.
The NYtimes quoted Richard Ings, a former antidoping official from Australia as saying, “antidoping is all about trust: trusting your competitors, trusting the drug testers, trusting the sports admin types. What I believe you are witnessing is evaporated trust. Remember, nearly 100 positives have now been found at the Beijing and London Games. Sochi was corrupted. Russia had state-sponsored doping, and the International Olympic Committee caved in.”
The battle surrounding drug cheating is far from over but hopefully new resolutions can be made and enforced that will allow for more peace among the athletes at the Olympics.
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