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Are the Olympics all about gold medals?

This contribution has been submitted to Webdiary by a student in the Online Journalism unit for the Masters in Media Practice and Masters in Publishing courses at The University of Sydney as part of the unit's assessment. The topics covered in the pieces awaiting publication are interesting – and diverse. We hope that Webdiarists will enjoy reading them, as well as giving these aspiring journalists plenty of constructive commentary.

Are the Olympics all about gold medals?
by Feifei Guo

I went to see the 2008 Australian Olympic Team Homecoming celebrations which began in Sydney on September 15. More than ten thousands spectators came to George Street to celebrate the athletes’ success from Beijing Olympic.

Supporters waved Australian national flags and shouted medalists’ names when hundreds of Olympians walked down the street. Libby Trickett became the most popular athlete who won two gold medals in swimming from Beijing.

Australia won 46 medals, including 14 gold, ranked the sixth place on the gold medal tally. The gold medal tally became a battle field. The Olympics raise patriotic zeal around the world.

The British dig at Australian by saying, “What the bloody hell were you?” as this is the first time Britain won more gold than Australia at Olympics.

The United States can‘t accept the truth that China jumped to the top of the gold medal table. According to the article of The New York Daily News, “USOC's new math has U.S. beating China in gold medal duel”.

When Michael Phelps won his eight gold medals in swimming pool, you couldn’t escape from the media coverage talking about his success.

Two weeks ago, there was an Olympic celebration for Chinese gold medalists in Hong Kong. Only the gold medalists were invited.

I do understand our patriotic hearts. Gold medals are our national pride, and gold winners are our heroes. However, are the Olympics all about gold medals?

We watch the Games day and night, share athletes’ pain and pride. We want to know how good our county’s sport is. We hold high expectation for our Olympians. We do care about how much gold medals our athletes can win.

But the Olympic Games are a global party. They are truly about participation and enjoying sports. We do not only compete for gold medals, but also share different cultures and bring our countries together.

Although Australia didn’t surpass its gold medal haul in Athens, most Aussies didn’t feel disappointed with the results.

“No, I don’t feel any disappointment at all. Our athletes were all doing their best in the game. I think the Olympic is about participate, I don’t care how many golds we can get,” Mr Linch, one of the Olympic supporters, said during the Welcome Home Parade. He also pointed out the Homecoming Parade should hold two weeks later, as the Paralympics athletes could also join the celebration.

Mrs Morris, another Olympic supporter with her four children around, her also said she wasn’t disappointed with the 14 gold. “All the athletes are heroes. The Australian team did a fantastic job in Beijing. The Homecoming Parade is good for the kids as they can get close to see their sports heroes,” she said.

Thanks for the Olympic athletes, as they all contribute to the country and let us to be proud of them. Thanks for the supporters, as most of them understand what the real Olympic spirts are.


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Feifei I read your article

Feifei I read your article and I believe that the Olympics are not all about Gold Medals.

Only a few rare and exceptional athletes ever win Olympic Gold, and those athletes are praised and celebrated. However not everyone is expected to win Gold.

If this were the case, then an Olympic Gold Medal wouldn’t hold its stature; it is the exclusivity of the medal that makes the achievement priceless.

Rather I think that Australia as a sporting nation celebrates the athletes which made it to the highest level, get into the spirit of supporting those representing our country and enjoy healthy rivalry and competition.The Olympics is enjoyed for its entertainment and awe of the athleticism of the competitors and it’s an inspiration for kids and adults alike.

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