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Making Sport of the Olympics Annoys Fans

August 15, 2004

You know it's the dog days of August when Max Boot starts complaining about the Olympics (Commentary, Aug. 12). They're bloated, they're pointless, they're too inclusive, blah, blah.... I think he misses the Cold War, when it was the East Germans who were on steroids and our athletes were clean and pure standard-bearers of American holiness.

He deplores the amount of time that NBC will be devoting to the Games. I hope they'll run out of story lines and just show us the events. But I'm dreaming.

We will have an unending soap opera. Brave kids, overcoming diseases, poverty, astigmatism, jail sentences, anything to distract us from the game. And of course, we won't be seeing any of those strange, foreign sports, just the ones where our guys do well enough to get a crowd shouting "USA! USA!"

And then, of course, some say the Greeks will do a lousy job of security, and terrorists will surely strike. Well, they might. But I'm hoping they just pass on this one. They're busy enough in Iraq.

James Hassinger



Boot does a disservice to sports-loving people worldwide by denigrating the Olympic Games. His comparisons of watching an epee competition to a NFL football game are ludicrous. There is something in the Games for everyone to enjoy.

My wife never watches NFL football, but she is a rabid fan of gymnastics and marvels at the fabulous athletic ability that the gymnasts exhibit. I assure Boot that millions and millions of people worldwide will be glued to their TV sets, and I have to think that he too will be a willing spectator.

Nate Rubin

Los Angeles

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