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Topic: World Cup, to boycott or not? Post ReplyPost New Topic
Eric Ladd
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Joined: 16 August 2004
Location: Canada
Posts: 3757
Posted: 07 June 2018 at 5:34am | IP Logged | 1 post reply

I am not a big soccer fan, but I do like the World Cup. I appreciate the spectacle and what is usually a top notch display of the sport. However, with Russia hosting I am seriously thinking of not watching any of the games and only concerning myself with the highlights and sports shows that cover the event. On the BBC this morning reporters arriving to cover the Cup did a segment on how they are being watched and constantly followed. Russia is going to leverage the fact it is hosting the World Cup to show they are just a misunderstood country, but I want to send a message to the FIFA organization that allowing Russia to host the Cup was a huge mistake. Anyone else out there conflicted?
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Michael Penn
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Joined: 12 April 2006
Location: United States
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Posted: 07 June 2018 at 6:30am | IP Logged | 2 post reply

I don't have mixed feelings about Putin, that's for sure!

But I'll be watching purely for the sport. I've not missed a World Cup since I was old enough to be aware of it.
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Peter Martin
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Joined: 17 March 2008
Location: Canada
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Posted: 07 June 2018 at 6:41am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

Yes, I was not happy with Russia getting this World Cup from the get-go, which was awarded at the same time as Qatar getting the 2022 World Cup. Both seemed strange choices. And then shortly after FIFA became embroiled in a corruption scandal.

There are humanitarian and political issues that count as black marks, but putting those to one side, on a purely functional level they both are unattractive. Russia is vast, meaning great travelling distances between venues. Qatar has ridiculously inappropriate weather for hosting a summer football tournament.

Throw in the racism problem amongst Russian football crowds, the organised violence of Russian hooligans in recent years and Russia's questionable behaviour on the world stage in terms of election tampering and meddling in Ukraine and the whole thing becomes objectionable (Qatar has its own large humanitarian issues in terms of indentured workers trapped in unsafe working conditions building the infrastructure required for the tournament).
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Giorgos Goumas
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Joined: 05 June 2005
Location: Greece
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Posted: 07 June 2018 at 10:45am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

I will be watching for sure. From my point of view I can't really see what Russia is doing worse than other major countries.

What time period is enough to give a pass to a bad-"evil" country to host such an event?

And which countries would you consider to be good choices?
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Michael Roberts
Byrne Robotics Member

Joined: 20 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 13078
Posted: 07 June 2018 at 12:00pm | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Russia is going to leverage the fact it is hosting the World Cup to show they are just a misunderstood country

Having just returned from visiting Russia, I think they /are/ a misunderstood country. No love for Putin, of course, but once I was over there, I got why he remains appealing to the Russians. The urbanites in St. Petersburg and Moscow have pretty much all the same things as we do in the US and Europe (Moscow is basically a cleaner version of NYC, including all the hipster bars and coffeehouses). While the Russians whove lived outside of Russia that I talked to complain about the government, I think everyone else looks around, sees they have all the same luxuries as the West, and wonders what the big deal is. Meanwhile, the poorer people in the rural areas only know life in their towns and go by what the government-run media tells them.

Actually, I saw a lot of parallels with the current US administration, and it was depressing. 

Moscow was making a lot of changes to accommodate the World Cup such as adding signage in the Latin alphabet and offering more English options in places, and I think thats a good thing. 
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Robbie Parry
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Joined: 17 June 2007
Location: United Kingdom
Posts: 12187
Posted: 07 June 2018 at 3:15pm | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Naive though it is of me, I like to keep sport and politics separate for the most part (I know that isn't always doable). 

I have issues with the UK right now, such as cuts to disabled person's social security and the like. Look up "ATOS scandal" for one thing. So should the UK host a tournament? Well, with corruption appearing to be rife here, and the likes of the Jimmy Savile scandal a few years ago, I don't feel my country is in a position to judge others. Right now, the UK has a lot to NOT be proud of.

So, I would just try and enjoy the sporting achievements. I won't tell others how to fell, that's just how I feel.
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Rebecca Jansen
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Joined: 12 February 2018
Location: Canada
Posts: 1740
Posted: 07 June 2018 at 3:42pm | IP Logged | 7 post reply

I think if Putin made you not watch something you otherwise wanted to it would be giving him power. On the other hand, if he were like Trump and crowed about tv ratings as if they were 100% support for him and everything he has ever done or said...:^(
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Karl Wiebe
Byrne Robotics Member

Joined: 06 December 2015
Location: Canada
Posts: 172
Posted: 03 July 2018 at 6:17pm | IP Logged | 8 post reply

I can appreciate the sentiment.  I felt conflicted about the Beijing Olympics in 2008 with the human rights abuses.  So I watched it but told myself I was "supporting" the sports (and the athletes) and not the politics.  I went to Beijing this year and people are just people.  The average Joe is just trying to feed their family.  So my attitude now is that it not some schmoe in Russia's fault for what is happening because of their government, so the politics is just one piece of a larger picture.
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Bob Simko
Byrne Robotics Security
Negative Mod

Joined: 16 April 2004
Location: United States
Posts: 5779
Posted: 04 July 2018 at 6:59am | IP Logged | 9 post reply

Living under the current administration has given me a new perspective on
sitting leaders and policies versus the people and spirit of a nation.
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