ChinaWatcher’s response to my last post has struck me as particularly thoughtful and reasonable. However, I have a different view on the following statement and feel the issue is important enough to write a separate post, to ensure sufficient attention. My writing is 99.9% dead serious and 0.1% over the top satire. The Olympics have been criticized for being uptight and lacking in fun. We need to make it up for Beijing.
“In the court of international public opinion…….China will be seen to have gotten away with cheating in these Olympics.”
ChinaWachter’s understanding of the Court of International Public Opinion strikes me as naïve. This complicated issue requires clear-headed analysis for correct understanding.
Let us look into the issue of “doctoring passports and falsifying documentation” and its ramifications in the Court of International Public Opinion, which is the heart of Kexin’s age controversy. I ask a straightforward question. Who was manipulating paperwork, and tinkering with due processes in the run up to the Olympic games? To put it more bluntly, do we have “bogus Americans” on Team USA in the Beijing Olympics?
There are at least 33 foreign-born Americans on Team USA, “compared to 27 at the 2004 Summer Games, according to the U.S. Olympic Committee…. They include four Chinese-born table tennis players, a kayaker from Britain, Russian-born world champion gymnast Nastia Liukin and seven members of the track-and-field team.” – USA Today.
Not all of 33 are “bogus Americans”. Although Nastia Liukin was born in Russia to Soviet daddy and mommy, she is all American herself, because her formulating experiences were American.
An interesting case is Lopez Lomong, the Sudanese runner who carried the American flag in the March of the Nations in the opening ceremony. We know he was born in 1985 in Dafur. Mr. Lomong’s official webpage is alarmingly mute about the specific year of his arrival in the United States, so are most mainstream American media. I read his entire bio and found no info on exactly when he landed in this great country and became a proud patriotic citizen. Somebody is definitely hiding something.
Internet digging ensued (despite my busy schedule and panic over next week’s classes). According to the Internet Home for High School Track and Field,
“On July 31st 2001, Lopez Lomong was able to run from Africa and landed in the upstate New York community of Tully and into a new life.”
Let us assume Lopez arrived in the US with a green card (permanent residence) already in hand. According to the US immigration laws he would have to wait 5 years to be eligible to even apply for citizenship. That will make him eligible for applying for US citizenship in July 2006. Do you know how long it takes the US immigration to process an application of any kind? Let us assume that he applied immediately and his application received immediate attention and was approved on the spot. Then he would have a three-year waiting period to represent the United States according to the IOC. Did he follow the rules in the books to earn a spot on team USA in the Beijing Olympics in 08/08/2008? The numbers do not add up.
Let us overlook the legality of Mr. Lomong’s citizenship application process (the in-house lawyers at US Immigration Services have taken care of the details) and ask a simple question. Did the United States bend its laws and standard procedures to make it more expedient for Lomong to become a citizen than for the average Jose from Mexico? Has this manipulation been conducted for the purpose of winning medals and serving national interests? Is this government sponsored cheating?
If Lopez’s adherence to the Three Year Waiting Period for new citizens to represent a country is only slightly dubious, some “American” representatives in these Olympics are bogus in a straightforward and unpretentious way. Can you get around IOC rules if the Nation’s Interests are involved? Oh yeah, Americans can do it with no problem.
“Two new Americans received the I.O.C. waiver (of the three-year waiting period after getting citizenship) this year: the equestrian Phillip P. Dutton, who won two gold medals for Australia; and the canoeist Heather Corrie, who is also a British citizen.” – New York Times.
Have anybody cried foul and asked why on earth the Court of International Public Opinion remained mute on this glaring transgression on the part of the Americans, the moral leader of the world? How did they get those waivers? If this not government sponsored cheating, then what is?
By the way, every single one of the athletes on Team China has been born to Chinese parents and raised in the territory of the People’s Republic of China, under the red flag, wearing the red Young Pioneers’ scarf, nourished with Chinese food, water and culture. Take that, hypocrites of the world.
In the court of International Public Opinions, the Americans and Europeans get away with all sorts of shady stuff everyday, but every time there is even a fleeting doubt about the Chinese, the “judges” climb on top of the roof and scream their lungs out. Here is a new wisdom I have learned about the court of international public opinion. How do you win in this court? You win by manipulation, duplicity and above all, by just being a jerk; learn from the Americans and Europeans and don’t be an idiot.