Editorial Cartoon by Graeme MacKay, Editorial Cartoonist, The Hamilton Spectator – Thursday August 14, 2008
Why are we so bad at the Olympics?
If we are, then here’s something else you may have heard before: You get what you pay for at the Olympics.
Medals don’t fall out of trees – not at the Summer Games. They come through sheer volume of legitimate medal chances, and the countries with most darts come away with the most hardware.
The early results? We’re through five days of competition and our batting average is still .000. — Togo has a medal. Kyrgyzstan has two. Azerbaijan has three. And Michael Phelps has five.
We’ll pass them all by the end, barring an absolute disaster, but still, as the calls from editors begin to roll into the press centres here – all looking for the “What’s going wrong?” angle that usually doesn’t arrive for a few more days at these things – it is clear that Canadians are getting edgy.
Don’t forget. There are about a dozen countries in the world who are serious about hockey. Two – Canada and the U.S. – are gold medal threats in women’s hockey.
There are 200 countries that take track and field, boxing and swimming seriously.
“I think [we’re] disappointed because we had some dreams, or expectation, and it seemed that it was going to be easy. But you can see, nothing’s ever easy,” said Pierre Lafontaine, the team leader for Canada’s swimming team.
His team has posted all kinds of personal bests, but zero results. “There’s much more than just medals, but medals is what shows on the books,” he admits.(Source: National Post)
Letters to the Editor:
I was totally offended by the tasteless cartoon in Thursday’s Spectator regarding our great Canadian athletes.
My wife and I have watched a lot of the television coverage and have been proud to see our athletes try their best and give it their all, against other athletes who are supported by their governments with large sums of money.
Maybe the cartoonist and some of our politicians should get out and support our athletes, or maybe even volunteer to coach or assist some of these fine examples of Canadian youth, instead of poking fun at them.
Good luck to all our athletes.
— P. Knapp, Hamilton
The editorial cartoon depicts a Canadian swimmer running along the edge of the pool — and still finishing well behind the pack. I find this cartoon totally offensive.
As the son of a man who competed in the first British Empire Games in Hamilton and later in the Los Angeles Olympics in 1932, I am aware of the dedication, hard work and many sacrifices made by athletes. There is also heartbreak endured by many along the journey.
I would have expected a major urban newspaper to show understanding and compassion in its coverage — be it print or “humour.” I challenge The Spectator to take a more constructive role in promoting future Olympic podium successes.
— J. Ravensdale, Puslinch
I would like to congratulate your witty and talented cartoonist Graeme MacKay. I read the criticism of his cartoon about the failure of the Canadian athletes the first week of the Olympic Games. Cartoon is satire and the one who doesn’t accept it lacks a sense of humour.
— Panos Andronidis, Hamilton