Sunday, February 8, 2009

Phelps phlap -- the consequences of being born in the U.S.A.

You have to feel a bit sorry for Michael Phelps because he is an American olympic champion. He was outed for smoking a bong at a party and now there is an enormous morality play going on in the U.S. that has seen him suspended from competition and losing millions in corporate sponorships.

If he had been Canadian this would barely have rated a ripple.

Witness Ross Rebagliati, Canada's gold medal snowboarding winner in the 1998 winter olympics in Nagano, Japan. After taking the gold, olympic lab tests revealed that Ross had traces of marijuana in his blood. Since nobody could make an argument that marijuana is a "performance enhancing" drug, he kept his medal.

At home, Canadians did a collective shoulder shrug and chuckled. The media consensus was that there was something called a "snowboarding culture" amongst young people and smoking dope was part of it.

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