With the Olympics in full swing over in Tokyo, our news cycle’s pretty much dominated by the games and their results. Even I admit to looking at medal tables to see if Singapore’s gotten something. We haven’t gotten jack shit though…and that’s mad a ton of Netizens mad…which made President Halimah Yacob sad.
Talking about it in a post on her Facebook page, President Halimah Yacob ripped into local Netizens for their actions and comments against Singapore’s Olympians.
President Halimah Yacob is completely right you know.
The comments from the various posts I’ve seen have not been kind to any of the athletes representing Singapore at the games. They’re full of anger, disappointment and no small amount of spite for what they view as the athletes’ failure to perform…especially Joseph Schooling.
Schooling, who won the Gold medal in swimming in the last games, got schooled by the rest of the field in this one. He didn’t even manage to make it into the finals. He dropped from a time of 50.++ seconds in the past Olympics to a 53.++ in this one.
On one hand, I can understand the anger from Netizens on this.
How the hell do you fall so far? It’s not like he’s been sleeping or lazing around the whole time. He’s been training. Obviously there’s going to be some heavy scrutiny coming for him and his coaching staff. Heads are going to roll for this flub I guarantee.
But…and there’s a strong but here…we don’t know what really happened that day.
Yes, Schooling underperformed and was a disappointment. However…was he sick that day? Was he unable to cope with the pressure? Was he stressed too much? Psychological health is just as important as physical health, as the axing case at River Valley High showed.
For normal Singaporeans like us to just rag on our athletes (without knowing the complete facts), is just bad form. Yes, we are allowed anger and disappointment, but that doesn’t mean that we have to be mean and crass about it.
What’s the point harping on about racism and other societal ills if we’re not compassionate for the the failings of others?
Schooling and the other athletes, are human too. If the tables were turned, would you want to be on the receiving end after all the sacrifices you’ve made to get to the Olympics?
Make no mistake, it is a sacrifice.
For years, an athlete’s whole life is nothing BUT the sport. Training, training, training. Day in and out. Sure, they get perks (and a payout if they get medals), but that doesn’t diminish the fact that you basically burn years of your life away just to compete. That’s without even thinking about what it might have cost their bodies to be subjected to the intense workouts.
So yeah, you can get angry and be disappointed at the Singaporean athletes. That’s your right as a Singaporean. Just do it in a civil way.