Athletes who support Tibetan freedom with flags, patches or any other form of expression risk being expelled from the Olympic Games in Beijing. Any such expression will be labeled as propaganda and athletes will face sanctions from the International Olympic Committee, Jacques Rogge, a Belgian, announced.
Athletes supporting Darfur could risk being stripped of a medal or disqualified as well.
This situation is really frustrating, and a clear attempt by the Chinese Government and the Olympics to try and quiet down protesters. Are the Olympics really more important than Tibetans and Darfurians? I really don't think so.
This applies to our class because it will be interesting to see how those willing to protest violate these rules, how they react to the opponents' strategy for consolidating control. This is obviously a messy situation. I really hope that something positive will come out of it rather than China just feeling like the world is against them, even if that is true. The Olympics seem to be concerned that the event is being politicized, but I think that is the only thing they could have expected. China is a controversial country. I imagine if the games were being help in America there could rightfully be similar protests around the world.
Some people are anticipating similar protests to what Tommie Smith and John Carlos did in 1968, demonstrating against racial discrimination in America. They gave the Black Power salute and were expelled from the games. But no one will forget that image and I think this is an opportunity to look beyond the games and take a stand for human rights. I wish I was good at some Olympic sport so I could protest!