In 2020 evaluation report, IOC again proves that trees are more important than people at the Olympics
Well, the evaluation report (view here on InsideTheGames.biz) for bids for the 2020 Summer Olympics is out, and once again we can see the priorities of the IOC and once again they’re not human rights, and in particular LGBT rights.
We do note that none of the finalists (Istanbul, Madrid, Tokyo) are as dreadful as Sochi in terms of human rights (although Turkey seems to be trying its best). But the lack of any discussion of human rights in this document is telling.
You might think that this is because the focus of the document is on venues and other infrastructure for the Olympics, and you’d not be entirely wrong. Indeed, a great many pages are devoted to such topics. But there are many other points considered by the evaluation committee, including “education”, “safety and security”, and the “environment”.
“Education” is about physical education in school, not about enlightening the population or using the event to education the world community on issues like equality and tolerance.
“Safety and security” of course says nothing about protection of participants from harassment and violence due to discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or expression.
“The environment” is about protecting the natural environment, not about the social and legal environment of Olympic participants.
Another key point of interest for the IOC is the legal context of hosting the Olympics. Because, as you may not know, in order for a city to have the honor and privilege of hosting the Olympics, the host country has to change its laws. Yes. The Olympics are that big of a deal, that a sovereign state will change its own laws just to oblige the folks from Lausanne.
Surely this is an opportunity to ensure that the Olympics are hosted in a place that respects human rights (you know, those human rights that the IOC says the practice of sports is one), don’t you think? Well, no. The only laws the IOC really cares about are intellectual property laws: “As requested by the IOC, Olympic and Paralympic properties are protected by intellectual property law. Special measures may need to be implemented in order to take immediate action against any brand protection violations.”
There are so many problematatic countries in the world; so many of them are greedy to host the Olympics. Instead of using that lust to promote social progress for LGBTs, for women, for humanity in general, the IOC prefers to protect its brand. I guess that’s their right. But please then remove the word “human right” from your charter. Quit pretending to care. You don’t.