2014 Sochi Olympics: Joyous and Problematic

Amid stories about faulty toilets, questionable drinking water, athletes bailing out, security issues,  a high jacked plane, and Russian President Vladimir Putin's put down of  the gay community, the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics got underway, anyway. 
Fireworks light up the night at the opening of Russia's 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics.

We've probably not had such distractions surrounding an Olympic event in a long time.  One can hardly imagine a more unpreparedness for a mega event like the 2014 winter games.

The talk of the facilities and water at the Olympics pale in comparison Putin's "gay propaganda" law, making it illegal to disseminate information about homosexually to minors.

"We are talking about protecting children from the respective information," said Putin. "Leave the children alone."

Whether you agree or disagree with Putin for speaking his mind, his remarks set off a fire storm in the gay community, with many groups forming protests.

Students of Amnesty International at a local college did just that; holding signs that read, 'homophobia kills', and 'light your flame for freedom in Russia'.

Amnesty International students give Russian president Vladimir Putin an
Olympic style '10' for the oppression of gay rights in Russia. Photo/CD Brown.

Said Ariana Sites (far left), "I wish he would take everyone's individual human rights for free speech into account when he's making laws that affect his country as a whole." 

"The Olympics is all about uniting people", said Kyle Stankob, "and the environment, the atmosphere, in Russia right now is kind of the exact opposite of what the Olympics strives for."

President Obama, in his effort of inclusion, announced in December of last year that the following individuals would lead the US Delegation of the Olympics' opening and closing ceremonies to include 
Billie Jean King, Member of the President’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition, Member of the International Tennis Hall of Fame, and recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom; Brian A. Boitano, Olympic gold medalist, figure skating; Janet A. Napolitano, President of the University of California, and Eric Heiden, five-time Olympic gold medalist, all of which are gay.

Lewis Huyhn holds an Olympic themed poster before the Sochi Olympics opening ceremony,
almost prophesizing the Olympics' disconnected ring during the  opening ceremony.  Photo/ CD Brown.
"The oppression and discrimination of specific demographic of people is less about human rights and more about being absolutely stupid", explained Lewis Huynh.

"To subjugate human people is to cut off your own foot", he added.   "You are preventing the potential of growth that people can contribute to your country, and it's absolutely stupid and foolish to do so.  It's absolutely suicidal."

It would seem that Russia doesn't just have a gay conflict on its hands. Add racism to the list of #SochiProblems.  Millions read the tweet coming from Russian medalist Irina Rodnina, who imposed a banana in a photo that featured US President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama.

Despite her actions, she was able to light the torch at the Olympics' opening last evening.

The discriminatory, problem plagued, Sochi Olympics in Russia continue until February 28th.

How many problems can it present before then?  Ninety-nine (99), perhaps?