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Should all Britain’s Olympic champions be rewarded with gongs?


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Here is a long, but interesting article on wether every British Olympic Gold medalist should be honored in the New Year's Honors List.

The gong controversy was sparked by Jeremy Stephens, permanent secretary at the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS), who said that there would be no ‘automatic’ gongs for Team GB’s gold medallists. Instead, the newly established independent honours committee would assess an athlete’s ‘contribution over a career and a lifetime’.

Read the complete article: http://www.spiked-online.com/site/article/12804/

Jean-Paul

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Seems reasonable to me, the reward for winning an Olympic final is, er, a gold Olympic medal, isn't it?

Those who use the fame and their talents to the good of their sport or society in general are the ones who should be considered for inclusion in the Honours List.

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Interestingly, Great Britain is the only major medal-winning country that does not offer cash incentives to its medalists. Although I did read that the British athletes are to get a postage stamp, which may pay royalties. The US pays $25,000 to gold medalists, $15,000 to silver, and $10,000 for bronze.

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IMHO the honour of representing ones country at the Olympics should not need an extra cash incentive to do well.

Money ruins any sport, although nowadays it is more about buisness than team spirit and national pride.

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I agree with all of you who say NO ! The exception is a competitor who has won consistently over the years, and therefore

has brought Honour to Britain. One off's are just that.

When Sth. Africa's splendid little team returned to Johannesburg they were given cheques for Rands 200,000 each for a Gold Medal.

This was as they came through from Customs. No discrete ceremony - just paid off like workers. It was a disgrace and unlike most Countries who had their Prtesidents at the Games,I don't think we sent anyone of importance.

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  • 2 weeks later...

I argee a gong is a gong and as a rule of thumb the british system only allows one medal for any one campaign, but why not let our medal winning olympians use post nominals which would be a discrete way of demonstrating their achievements, and an honour would be for service to sport or whatever.

J Bloggs O.G. (2) -- olympic gold twice

I get to use BSC Hons Civils for 4 years beer drinking and poor pool playing

Gordon B

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  • 3 weeks later...

Unlike Britain, Canada has awarded Diamond Jubilee Medals to Olympic and Paralympic athletes. I’ve heard that the number of recipients was 125 and the medals were presented by the Prime Minister instead of the Governor-General. See the video: http://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/news-video/video-olympians-paralympians-honoured-by-harper/article4555295/

Here is another link and video: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/story/2012/09/19/ottawa-olympians-visit-schools-cheo-parliament-hill.html

Jean-Paul

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So, apparently the medals are not enough reward. No, I'm not taking a position, just commenting, though I tend to the 'lifetime achievement' position. Not sure about cash for Canadian winners but if they do I can guarantee its a piddly sum! probably enough to cover 2 or 3 months training costs.

Agreed that money spoils sport, but what to do when some countries give athletes jobs - government or otherwise - which allow them to train 365 days a year cost free? Is enlisting them in the army and assigning them to the PT Corps a 'cheat' or just leveling the playing field to make up for what China and some of the other nations do? The notion that Olympic athletes are 'amateurs' is a pretty tattered and threadbare fiction these days, so perhaps the Cdn government is, in an unusually honest move for them, simply acknowledging that fact.

Edited by peter monahan
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On a slightly different note, I recently listened to a news story on a Canadian runner who won gold in Korea years ago but then tested positive for drugs. He was promptly stripped of the title and, despite pathetic attempts to argue he'd been 'framed' booted out future international competition. The disturbing thing at the time was the evidence against his coach, who may even not have told the athlete - a fast runner but dumb as a stump - about the drugs. Also very sad was the fact that he suddenly became to many people a 'Jamaican' or 'Jamaican Canadian' runner instead of 'Canadian'.

The recent story, however, pointed out, with corroborative evidence, that every other runner in that race, including the guy who ended up with the gold, tested positive for drugs in subsequent years. So, "all amateurs, all pure and sporting gents"? Baa! Humbug!

Edited by peter monahan
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