Should Olympics athletes be paid? You betcha

Once upon a time, Olympic athletes had to sign pledges affirmed that they were amateurs, because communist athletes were not definable, they weren’t amateurs, yet they weren’t exactly “pros” like Michael Jordan. What the Russians were doing a was labeled as unfair. So in 1986, the IOC (International Olympic Committee) changed the Olympic Charter (most likely to allow “all the world’s great male and female athletes to participate.” America has had a long tradition of patriotism and participating in the Olympics as a badge of honor. Unfortunately, the Olympics hasn’t been about patriotism for a long time. America has a few other long traditions of capitalism and of being self-righteous.

Recently former medalist Dwayne Wade and Ray Allen have suggested that athletes be compensated for Olympic participation.  In 1992 a Michael Jordan led Olympic “Dream Team” nearly boycotted the Olympics due to corporate loyalties. Wade and Allen are not the first to come out in favor of athletes being paid for Olympic participation, but this new controversy against them reeks of racism. You see the help is the one asking to be paid, while the plantations owner is saying you’ve been paid enough, while others are saying you have millions… Perhaps we are not asking the right questions…

Is Jerry Colanagleo running USA Basketball out of the goodness of his heart?

Is Mike Krzyzewski coaching out of sheer patriotism?

Are Nike and Addias donating the uniforms and footwear?

And if they didn’t are they seen as being less patriotic?

Games of the XXX Olympiad, take place in London, England from 27 July to 12 August 2012, will be a multi-billion dollar industry; so much for volunteerism, individual effort, just hurry up raise the national flags and add up those USA totals. This is not a matter of whether or not other countries are paying their players. When black players have a valid opinion on anything that isn’t sports related, it’s always a problem for the masses.  Track and Field athletes get paid to train year around for that one shining moment to represent 300 million plus people, not to mention the gold medal prize money because medalists do receive money.

None of the past US Olympians that have spoken out have asked for million, perhaps they are making a case for future amateur Olympic hopefuls. Because they should be paid, including the bob sledder and figure skaters. 190 plus participant nations support their Olympic athletes 100% financially, the U.S. government gives zero money to its athletes. All the host cities in the world, except those in the USA, have supported their host Winter and Summer Olympics with billions of dollars, the Olympics is run entirely from corporate money, the corporations have control. Hasn’t professional and corporate involvement in the Olympic’s dampened it’s spirit? If these citizens are so patriotic then, aside from asking the right questions, give these Olympians jobs, cars for their service or better still their company allow the use of their symbols and products in return only for favorable publicity and public good will. They should be paid just like the college athlete, whose coaches earn 5 million per year, should be paid.

By using pros isn’t the U.S. admitting that we are on equal footing with the rest of the world. That we can’t have our amateurs compete against the under developed countries of the world and have a change of winning. Sportscasters, bloggers and fans have hit these players on how much money they make, for what they do, “all they do is put a ball in a hole”, “they are crybabies”,”now they want to get paid when they should volunteer” is what is most commonly heard. A Professional Athlete by definition is: a person who is paid to undertake a specialized set of tasks and completes them for a fee.

Perhaps our overriding American bullying nature has caused us to forget the definition of things, but that’s not the truth. The truth is that White Supremacy subconsciously causes the populace to rail against blacks that stand their ground, not wait for whites to lead the way or say ‘I disagree’. Where is the spirit of the games that had America pushing its youth to compete against the youth of other countries? Where is the old adage that anyone could have a chance at glory? Regardless of who’s paying, money has never bought inner drive or passion. Speaking out when our society has lost it’s way, may not seem as patriotic as say urinating on Afghans, or torturing “enemy combatants”, but that is what citizens are supposed to do, that is what makes a good republic. So stop whining about purity and patriotism and use amateur hopefuls or pay the professionals.

by MG Hardie

In case you hadn’t heard that Attorney General Eric Holder and the Justice Department will no longer have DEA agents or the government resources used to raid California cannabis clubs. Why, the official reasoning is that the government has more important thing to do than stopping people with cancer from easing their pain and arresting patients. The real reason is a little more detailed, to find out you need to have a little bit of what I like to call

 

Marijuana History

 

Marijuana is the herb of peace that is why American Indians smoked it in the Peace Pipe. Most people don’t know why marijuana is federally illegal in the first place. Well in Big Tobacco’s hey-day they lobbied, cough paid for cough, congress to outlaw the herb. Marijuana does not have a global conglomerate to fill the coffers of senators. By the way those in power do take donations just make sure they are not traceable. If you think this is hog-wash then ask yourself why do we have a Super Highway system in California instead of a subway system? That is another story but it involves money, the big three automakers and certain tire companies… anyway. Subsequently Marijuana was outlawed, don’t believe that whole crossing state lines jurisdiction stuff, besides how do you expect Tobacco companies to compete with something that just grows naturally if you water it.

Lobbiest– It’s only a small amount of rat poisoning senator… now what fund do I make the check out to?

Though Mary Jane was illegal, people continued to smoked the little herb. In the 60’s the enlightened marijuana culture gained full force, some people called them hippies. In the 70’s the movies of the comedic duo Cheech and Chong added marijuana to pop-culture and many studies were done on the innocent herb. I bet you didn’t know that the Federal government grows and maintains the largest crop of marijuana on the planet did you. I wonder what they are using it for. They say it is for research… I say half-baked research. In the 80’s the culture spread and many entertainers were advocates of the little herbs decriminalization and Cheech and Chong broke up so it was a truly a sad day. In 1995 Chris Tucker and Ice Cube starred in a marijuana culture movie named Friday this movie has become a cult legend. The popularity of this little movie had much to do with the voters of California passing Prop 215, a law making marijuana available for medical purposes in 1996.  Other states also have passed laws of this nature as well. Although somewhat legal in California the Federal Government continued to raid medical cannabis clubs. However, if you have $100 in California a doctor will give you a certificate that states that you have a medical condition requiring an occasional puff or two. Which brings us to the reason behind this decision?

 

Marijuana Today  

 

With some estimates being as high as 40 billion dollars annually Cannabis is the biggest cash crop in America and you thought it was wheat or corn didn’t you. That can only mean that people are rolling an occasional joint and some are abusing it even though you may not see them smoking it. Most people fall on one side or the other when debating the effect of Marijuana. Most of the people who are against it are because they have a predisposition to using it. The people that are for pots legalization have used it or know someone who has and has seen no negative affect of it. By the way marijuana’s use is so prevalent that you do know someone who has or is using it. In the California’s Emerald Triangle people have houses with no tables and no chairs they are just growing reefer plants in the living room. Many countries around the world have legalized the herb with no problems. Honestly marijuana’s use is accepted today no one really cares and the tables have turned for Big Tobacco. Remember the Marijuana growers and sellers do not want it to be legalized because it would erase their profits. How accepted is it?  Marijuana is the prevalent subculture in America it stands head and shoulders with the Hip Hop culture… which reminds me that I’ve got to remember to renew my subscription to High Times. You can buy marijuana trinkets, smokeware and books just about everywhere. “It’s good news for people in California who are so ill that they have gotten a doctor’s note in compliance with the law,” said Sen. Barbara Boxer. Of course she is trippin’ because people can already do that! These kinds of statements only go to show that many Senators are completely out of touch. Marijuana’s use has been featured songs, theaters and movies the most recent movie was Pineapple Express. Even the playwright Tyler Perry newest Play the Marriage Counselor prominently showcases marijuana’s use. The fact that my book EveryDay Life is at the forefront of the Legalization of Marijuana debate was named The Best Kept Literary Secret of 2008 and it is now a finalist for an annual literary award is further evidence that blunt rollers all over America may soon have a real reason to fire it up.

 

Is Marijuana bad for you?

 

That is the question we all want to know right? The answer varies depending on who you ask. Medically, no. Legally, yes. Is there a criminal element to it? Of course, it’s illegal. I personally know a 75 year old Caucasian woman who uses it. I spoke to three people this week who said that if it were legalized they would smoke it and these people were in the healthcare profession. Ganja is just like sugar. Some sugar is good for you too much sugar is not. If while on it you just won 8 Olympic gold medals, an Oscar for something you did it can’t be bad can it? What if you were on it and you just won the Presidency of the United States of American by the largest margin ever it can’t be bad for you can it? If smoking it is bad for you then what does that say about the people who are around you everyday that use it?.

 

What’s Next?

 

No one knows there is talk about decriminalizing it and taxing it. And without question this action if done right will lift all of America out of a depression, period. If the Governator get this right it will be the best thing he’s ever done as Governor, I mean really cutting education and letting out thousands of prisoners is really not a good move. The proper legislation on this matter could be a model for every state, but remember there is a difference between use and abuse and that the sellers, growers and those with preconceived notions will be against this. This is the right thing to do but it has to be done right. California’s government has shown its ability to be inept so I doubt that this will be done correctly, if at all. The hope at the moment Assemblyman Tom Ammiano, has introduced legislation, that if approved by the California Legislature, it would put marijuana on the same legal footing as alcohol. Under AB 390, adults over the age of 21 would be allowed to buy marijuana from licensed sellers, and driving under the influence of it would be prohibited. At this point I would question anyone’s reasoning for not voting for it to be legalized in some way.Now it seems that the debate of decriminalizing Pot may be a simple matter of economics.