Tuesday, 26 August 2008
Like most people with a TV this summer I've enjoyed The Olympics a lot. Beyond all the politics and bullshit (of which there was much), the actual games were a lot of fun, particularly when the track and field got going in the later stages. I definitely felt a lot of pride for the Team GB sportsmen and women, there were some quite incredible feats achieved in Beijing. Not just by the winners and medalists but those who reached quarter, semi and finals in record breaking disciplines. Now without getting into the politics of hosting the games in London (I will do but frankly I have 4 years) it has to be said that the opportunities afforded our poorest potential sportsmen and women in this country is not good enough. I heard a debate on the radio where a lot of people claimed that Britain was only successful in the "Toff Sports". I don't agree with that, you could argue that the boats are a bit out of the reach of the common man, but to be honest, every sport is out of the reach of the common man as things stand, there appears to be no effort to unearth a sporting gem in the deprived areas of London (South London certainly). It's the same thing with football, if Fulham Football Club weren't so commendably involved in local football in South London there would be no communication from the game at all, or the government who I think has a responsibility. Jeremy Paxman's TV, The Brit School's music industry and the Toff's Olympics? "All us blacks got is sports and entertainment, until we're even" Not hardly. This government's general disdain for sports among youth has been pretty clear for all to see though. Nobody loses at sports day any more, rugby and boxing are all but illegal and good luck trying to find a school with proper outdoor field facilities in the major cities.