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About The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current | View Entire Issue (Jan. 20, 1999)
Olympic bribery has
Money talks, and its message can be
seductive. That seduction includes the
promise of wealth, fortune or favors for those
who choose to listen to it.
But just as clean money helps America’s
citizens and its programs, dirty money can
kill. Its victims: those who fall from their
pedestals because of corruption or greed.
Dirty money’s latest target: the very basic
foundation of America’s pastimes and athlet
ic endeavors - sportsmanship.
No better example exists in today’s news
than the plight of those members of die com
mittee to bring the 2002 Winter Olympics to
Salt Lake City. And what a plight they have
brought themselves to.
The Olympics, a symbol of achievement
and excellence in sportsmanship, has been
irrevocably-marred because of that commit
tee’s foiled plan to bribe officials on the
International Olympic Committee, which is
in charge of selecting the sites.
Part of that plan was to literally “grease
the wheels” by giving the IOC members cars.
Others got their children’s college tuition
paid, utners got mgn-pncea prostitutes to
help make the decision of picking a city a lit
tle bit easier. Salt Lake City got the Olympics.
Surely, the bribes had something to do with it.
They didn’t get away with it, either, as the
committee members responsible have been
ousted and Salt Lake City may lose the event.
It’s easy to see IOC members were bribed
but unconscionable to condone. The
Olympics brings hundreds of millions of dol
lars to a city. There was a city wide celebration
in Atlanta Mien it was awarded the Summer
Olympics in 1996. It’s worldwide recognition
that a city is one of the best.
Which makes this all the more sad. A little
of Olympic spirit is gone with this scandal, as
is the pride of those who live in Salt Lake
City. Along with it goes some of our trust in
athletes. But the question is begged: Should
we trust them?
Money seems to be the central issue in all
of sports. The NBA almost didn’t have a sea
son because of it. Notre Dame, Arizona State
and Northwestern all had players purposely
play poorly because they’re paid to do so by
gamblers. With every incident of point shav
ing, America’s wariness of athletes goes up.
It’s appropriate to write this editorial now,
for we stand only five days from single
biggest day of gambling in our history - the
Super Bowl in Miami. Millions will wager
money on the game, some of those wagering
millions by themselves.
With the current news as it is, one won
ders what would happen if Jamal Anderson
fumbles a ball or John Elway throws a bad
pass. Were they seduced by money to do it?
What if the referees make the wrong call?
Were they seduced? We hope not. But the fact
that the question might enter our minds is a
small defeat for America, and an unfortunate
victory for dirty cash.
- Unsigned editorials are the opinions of
the spring 1999 Daily Nebraskan. They
do not necessarily reflect the views of the
University of Nebraska-Lincoln, its
employees, its student body or the
University of Nebraska Board of Regents.
A column is solely the opinion of its author.
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In response to professor Gerry
Harbison’s column, “Kingly considera
tions,” Mr. Harbison seems a little con
fused about the purpose of celebrating
Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday. It is
not an academic holiday, we are not cel
ebrating King the scholar, we are cele
brating King the leader, and the civil
rights movement as a whole. What
King did as a student has no bearing on
what he did for the rest of his life.
Furthermore, I’d be very careful
about calling King a fraud. Tell me, was
he a fraud when he went to prison for
organizing the Birmingham protests?
Was he a fraud when he delivered his
famous “I Have a Dream” speech from
the steps of die Lincoln Memorial?
Let’s try to keep our eye on the ball
here. Any harm caused by King’s pla
giarism is insignificant compared to the
amount of good he did for our society. It
is sobering when you think of where we
might still be if it were not for his work,
and the work of those like him, and a
holiday is the very least we can do to
show our appreciation.
j • •
political science and
I won’t dispute Professor
Harbison’s claim that Martin Luther
King Jr. borrowed (plagiarized?) many
of his writings from the works of oth
ers. Neither do I confirm it In my view,
it is largely an irrelevant issue. If he did
so and did not properly credit the origi
nal authors, then this was wrong. But
when we celebrate MLK day, the focus
is not on Dr. King’s academic career or
. where he may have obtained the words
he spoke. Rather, we celebrate die truth
he spoke about and the power of his
ideas, which belong to everyone. These
include the ideas of unity instead of
division, forgiveness instead of hatred
and peace instead of attack.
An idea owned by one person is a
weak idea indeed. But an idfea
which is shared becomes/ .
stronger, and all who hold the J
idea share its power equally.
professor of mathematics
Impact over implications
While I agree with Dr. Harbison’s
opinion on the academic career of Dr.
Martin Luther King Jr., I disagree
with the premise that it is grounds not
to celebrate a day in his honor. The
King hpliday is to honor Dr. King’s
contribution to the civil rights move
ment and not his pursuit of academic
rigor. His scholarship may be ques
tionable but the impact his leadership
had on the civil rights movement is
not. Let those of us that appreciate the
strides that have been made and hope
for greater strides in the future cele
brate Dr. King’s birthday. This is a free
country; you can do whatever you like
on that day.
Show some respect
In observation of the Dr. Martin
Luther King Jr. celebration, I attended
Dr. Bertice Berry’s speech at the Lied
Center. She gave an amazing presen
tation, and I learned a lot, but unfortu
nately, that is not the topic of my letter.
I was sitting with some friends, when
a group of 25 fraternity men dressed
in suits sat down in the fifth and part
of the sixth row. No more than ten
minutes into Dr. Berry’s speech, 12 of
the men were slouched over in their
seats ... SLEEPING. This was one of
the rudest things I’ve ever witnessed.
They were obviously from a fra
ternity (because I knew some of the
members), so I could easily say that
these men represent all fraternity
men. Luckily, I know many people in
the greek system who are not like
these men, so I will not make such
assumptions. However, other students
may. Dr. Berry’s Speech was informa
tive and entertaining, and I learned a
lot about racism in our society. These
men could have learned a great deal
too, if they had been awake. Maybe
they should have taken note of a 6
year-old girl sitting nearby - she had
no problem paying attention. Sleeping
during the speech showed indiffer
ence and lack of respect toward Dr.
Berry and her message. The action of
these men reflects poorly on their
house, the greek system, and the NU
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