Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Hello Dalai

©2008 by LeeZard

Seattle welcomed the Dalai Lama to town this past week, for something called the “Seeds of Compassion” conference. While I recognize the almost rock-star quality of the world’s most famous Buddhist monk, the conference was a bit too esoteric for LeeZard.

Apparently LeeZard missed the compassion canoe; more than 150,000 people attended the series of events, workshops and concerts spread over several days at a variety of venues. Oh well.


Hey, we can all agree that more compassion would make for a better world but I’m not convinced a five-day conference in Seattle – even with the peaceful aura of the Dalai Lama – is going to make it happen. Hallloooo Beijing? Are y’all listening?

Which gets me to the real point of this particular rant. While I sympathize with the fight for religious freedom and tolerance in Tibet, I am troubled by the debate – here we go again - raging over the upcoming Olympic Games in China. Boycott or not?

Who do we think would be hurt by an Olympic boycott, the Chinese government? I don’t think so. Do we think such a boycott would force the Chinese to give Tibet even limited autonomy? When barbecued pork flies!

No, the only ones who would be hurt will be the athletes in the boycotting countries - or country. Determined, goal-oriented people who have dedicated their young lives to the “Olympic Ideal” will be screwed again by the politicos, determined power-oriented people who have dedicated their old lives to….power.

Whether you like it or not, China won the right to host the Olympics fair and square. It went up against the rest of the world and came away with the economic gold medal that goes with hosting the games. If this ridiculous suggestion is floated every four years (now, every two years with the Winter Games alternating), we could politicize the Olympic Movement to death.

Different geo-political blocs could boycott every Olympics until they simply die of political over-dose. Hold the games in the U.S. and let’s boycott because of the stupid Iraq War. Let’s boycott the 2010 Winter Games in British Columbia because Canada barely has an army. Hold them in New York State and boycott because Elliott Spitzer is a fool (Leezard couldn’t resist one more cheap shot at Elliott).

Would the politicians please step away from the five-ringed flag!!