Friday, July 29, 2016
Rio de Janeiro fought for the Olympics to show the world that Brazil has arrived as a country. Now that the games are about to start, Rio is in a mess and the glory of the games has backfired on the country with filthy water, ill-constructed buildings and a threat of disease. That together with a government in chaos is a near certainty to reflect on the games themselves as they take place. The media of the world will amplify the problems. Every breakdown will become news, every ill athlete a nail into the reputation of the country. It didn't have to be this way, but Brazil is not ready yet for the world stage and it is demonstrating that in its failures. Already, teams have abandoned the Olympic village because of inadequate housing and one wonders what the country will do with those buildings once the games are done. Will they become instant slums or will Rio reconstruct them into something habitable? Chances are nothing will happen to them since there is a history of rot in facilities used for the games once athletes have gone home. Third world countries should think twice before competing for the Olympics. The risk is too great that their inadequate ability to hold them properly will show them as ill-prepared on the world stage.