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Posts Tagged ‘Oscar Pistorius’

Paralympics Committee Bans Swimmer Who Isn’t Quite Paralyzed Enough

As we inch closer to the next Olympic Games, related organizations have had a bit of trouble presenting a positive face to the public. Earlier this month, the International Olympic Committee responded to global uproar over Russia’s strict anti-gay laws by suggesting that gay athletes and supporters try to tone it down a bit while visiting the Motherland for the 2014 Sochi Winter Games.

Now the International Paralympics Committee has earned a bit of bad press for deciding to ban swimmer Victoria Arlen from competing in future events, most importantly the Paralympic World Swimming Championships in Montreal.

Their point? There’s an infinitesimal chance that Arlen, who lost the use of her legs in 2006 thanks to a rare viral disease that paralyzed her from the waist down and left her in a coma for nearly two years, might walk again some day. Her coach says that her doctors call it “a sliver of hope”—and that’s apparently enough for the committee to remove her from the competition.

The swimmer and her fans are not happy:

Some other facts about Ms. Arlen:

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When Should Brands Drop Celebrity Spokesmen?

Image courtesy of European Pressphoto AgencyToday brought the completely unsurprising news that Nike has suspended its contract with Olympian “Blade Runner” and accused murderer Oscar Pistorius in order to “protect the brand”. Of course, the company also dropped Lance Armstrong last month after he confessed to being a cheater and a general jerk. Other athletes, however, have fared far better even after their bad behavior created PR problems for Nike. Remember the awful Tiger Woods/James Earl Jones commercial? Remember how Nike stuck with A-Rod after he admitted to using steroids?

We also find it a little strange to note that Nike still has a very cozy relationship with its biggest spokesman, Michael Jordan, who not only admitted to being a serial adulterer but supposedly taught Tiger how to follow in his footsteps. (Both Tiger and Kobe Bryant, another famous cheater and homophobe, have new Nike campaigns on the way. Tiger’s is titled “apologies.”)

Here’s what we take from this development:

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