Something is happening soon. An occurrence, at a place, involving people. Interested? No? OK, maybe I didn’t give you enough information. It’s a sporting event, a big competition, far away. Better?
All right, all right: the 2022 Winter Olympics. Skiing, ice skating, bobsledding and more. Opening ceremonies are Friday.
It’s on television — NBC is carrying it, and I just heard a radio commercial that summarized the above without once mentioning what used to be a salient fact: the location.
The Olympics are taking place in China. And while the host country used to be significant, now it’s a footnote. Why? Bad optics. The ruthless oppression of China’s Uyghur population. The crackdown on Hong Kong. They don’t quite mesh with the Olympian ideal of competition and fair play.
There’s more. China’s mounting passion to subjugate the free and independent nation of Taiwan. Its vassal state of Tibet. And our two-year trade war.
Quite a lot, really.
But wait, as Ron Popeil said. There’s more. Don’t forget Chinese tennis star Peng Shuai, who accused a high-ranking Community Party member of assault last November then was yanked from sight, popping up in a variety of staged shams whose ham-handedness was almost reassuring.
The Birthplace of COVID....
You get the picture.
So “China” gets coughed into a fist, lest viewers who’d otherwise get excited about watching luge decide to pass. Myself, I might tune in, just for a glimpse of our totalitarian future, whether imposed from without or embraced from within. Seamless lies backed by faceless power. Something to look forward to.
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