Fun & Games and Olympic Modernity
With the advent of the Paralympics, and record-breaking ticket sales, London has never been so full of life. The Olympics and Paralympics embody Link Up’s values. The international games fundamentally aim to celebrate our differences, whilst bringing us together coupled with the mutual respect that sports & sportsmanship brings. That is what makes the Olympics so great. It celebrates our differences, whilst acknowledging our similarities and as a result, reminds us of our solidarity as humans.
I’ve been working at Link Up for close to 6 months now, and the Olympic season has been the highlight for most of us that work here, as I’m sure it has been for many all over the world. It means a lot to us, as it is symbolic of what we hope to achieve here in the UK, and what we should aim to achieve as a society, and on a global scale as a whole.
The diversity of not only, nations, cultures and ethnicities, but also sexual orientations and people of different physical abilities is why the Olympic season matters. We get to see a variety of world-class sportsmen and women compete under the background of festivity. The Paralympics isn’t simply cheering on those less ‘privileged’ or ‘able’ than us, but rather just more Olympic competition with an even more diverse, and some might argue, more interesting array of sport. From blind football to boccia, wheelchair rugby to sitting volleyball, these are just a few of the sports I’m looking forward to watching.
The Olympics and Paralympics are important not only because of the coming together of people from all backgrounds and walks of life, but because they signify modernity. The games were revitalized in the late 19th century whilst societies across the globe were about to go through the unprecedented social and technological advancements of the 20th century, which we now enjoy and take for granted. The games represent modernity because of their inclusive nature. A society that is able to look past petty cultural & racial differences, and includes and supports those less fortunate, is a status of strength and humanity that any society can ever hope to achieve.
As we prepare to enjoy the festivities and the games over the next 11 days, try and remember and to reflect on what it is you’re watching. You’re seeing humanity at its best. You’re witnessing a snippet of how far humanity has come, and what it can and should achieve. In finishing, I think we’re all in for an inspiring finish to the Olympic season and I hope some of our best athletes capture the hearts and minds of our nation. Oh, and I forgot to mention, more importantly, go Team GB!