WHERE WAS THE U.S? A Message from ABA CEO Joe Newman
The Opening Ceremonies for the Winter Olympics in Sochi were spectacular. Russia, the host country,
should be very proud, not only for the beauty, pageantry, and professionalism of the event, but for the time, effort, creativity and investment they made to create a world class sports center. And it appears that they have done a great job in hospitality and security as well. It was very interesting also to see the history of Russia and I am sure viewers around the world learned a lot about the country. We do not have to agree with the politics of Russia to appreciate all they have done to make the Winter Olympics a world class event.
As my wife Connie and I were watching along with 3 billion people worldwide, we wondered where was the U.S (and we’re not talking about our wonderful US Olympic team). If our President and First Lady could not be there or our VP and his wife, how about our Secretary of State, or perhaps one or two of our past Presidents or one of our congressional leaders.
Was it a question of security? If so, how can we think about sending over 200 of our finest young athletes, and how can we think about the thousands of parents, friends and supporters of our team? What kind of message did we send to the 3 billion people worldwide? That this event was not important enough for us to be represented? I am very proud to be an American and support fully our US Olympic team. But quite frankly, last night, I was disappointed.