Watching the opening ceremony for the 2016 summer Olympics in Rio de Janero, Brazil, prompted me to question the astronomical amount of money that is invested in the games.
According to Rio2016.com, Brazil’s total sports-related expenses for the 2016 Olympic summer games will cost the country 7.4 billion dollars. The website displays that Rio hopes to achieve a revenue amount equal to the amount of its expenses, meaning Brazil will barely break even financially once the games conclude.
Viewing the opening ceremony and the hyperbolic lights, performances and music allowed me to consider when and why the Olympic Games lost sight of its true focus – the athletes. As the Olympic Games progress and continue on throughout the years, it becomes apparent that the focus of the games is moreso on its materialistic features as opposed to the individuals competing in the games, which is ultimately the sole reasoning as to why the games even exist.
The 2014 Sochi winter Olympics arguably boast the greatest financial burden of any of the games in existence – its expenses totalled to be fifty billion dollars. The Bejing summer Olympics in 2008 runs a close second to Sochi, with its total expenses amounting to forty billion dollars. These astronomical amounts of money genuinely encourage me to question what the purpose of the Olympics has become. Are the Olympics truly about the athletes? Or does the cost of the games serve as an indication as to what extent hosting countries are willing to go to in order to represent themselves most adequately?
I enjoy watching the games, though recognizing the financial burden of them certainly acts as reasoning to question their true purpose. I believe the games could be simplified in order to ensure the focus of the games (the athletes) remains true to its purpose as opposed to the glamor and sensationalism of appearance and reputation.