The Olympic Redemption Song- Usain Bolt, Justin Gatlin and Forgiveness
Christopher D. Connors

Dear Christopher,

In my view, although I disapprove of cheating, the shame we cast on athletes who have taken banned substances is an illusion. Like the magician’s movements which draw the audience’s gaze on his right hand while he cleverly hides away the object with his left hand. The IOC, sports associations, governments, all have made competitions a huge trade fair, and a confrontation arena for national and political prestige. In so doing, they invited cheating to sit at the table, but they refuse to take responsibility for it.

Regarding athletes who have yielded to the temptation, I would like to remind that despite the modern techniques of investigation and evidence collection by the police, some criminals are released, while occasionally people are wrongfully convicted. Why should it be different in the world of sports where bug money and research are most probably regular bed-fellows of the unbridled desire for adulation and wealth?

I am not a Jesus Freak nor do I religiously follow the teachings of Gandhi. However, some of their precepts I think useful and wise; among other issues, in regard to athletes who, one day, yielded to the temptation to accelerate their training: “Let him who is without sin cast the first stone” and “If we practice “eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth,” the world will soon be blind and toothless.»

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