Weekend Reads fans allowed at the Olympic torch relay in Japan - loud cheering but prohibited
Maybe boycotts don't work, but that doesn't quite end the debate about the 2022 Olympics in China
The debate about whether Canadian athletes should boycott the winter Olympics, scheduled to take place in China in 2022, ultimately rests on a series of questions about the efficacy of such action, the morality of proceeding with the games and even who should get to decide whether or not to launch a boycott. But if the Olympics do proceed with most of the world's nations represented, the question might then become whether its grand stage could be used to air the political and humanitarian concerns that now encircle the games.
Spectators are allowed at the torch relay for the Summer Olympics in Tokyo, but loud cheering for the runners is prohibited to protect against infection with the corona virus. According to the rules published by the Japanese organizing committee on Thursday, fans along the route must also keep their distance and wear masks. They are allowed to cheer on the torchbearers with applause and fan articles to clap, but not "by shouting and cheering".
The torch relay is scheduled to start on March 25th in Fukushima. The Olympic flame will then be carried through all 47 Japanese prefectures. In some regions there is already resistance to the plans. The governor of Shimane Prefecture is reported to have already threatened bans. The chief organizer of the Games, Seiko Hashimoto, said on Wednesday that the torch relay should unite the whole country under the slogan "Hope lights our way".
Japan begins COVID-19 vaccination drive amid Olympic worries
TOKYO — Months after other major economies, Japan began giving the first coronavirus vaccines to front-line health workers Wednesday. Many are wondering if the campaign will reach enough people, and in time, to save a Summer Olympics already delayed a year by the worst pandemic in a century. Despite recent rising infections, Japan has largely dodged the kind of cataclysm that has battered other wealthy countries' economies, social networks and healthcare systems. But the fate of the Olympics, and the billions of dollars at stake should the Games fail, makes Japan's vaccine campaign crucial.
The Summer Olympics planned for 2020 had been postponed due to the corona pandemic. Despite the global infection situation, the Tokyo government is sticking to holding the games in July and August this year. Around 11,000 athletes from around 200 countries are expected. It is still open whether spectators will be admitted.
Almost half a year before the planned start of the competitions, the Corona state of emergency continues to apply in several regions of the country, including the Tokyo area. 80 percent of the population reject the hosting of the games this year.
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Canadian swimmer Maggie Mac Neil facing prospect of competing at Olympics without family .
When Maggie Mac Neil competes for Olympic gold this summer in Tokyo, it’s unlikely any family members will be there to watch. Concerns about COVID-19 and restrictions due to the virus are convincing friends and family of many Olympic athletes to rethink travelling to the Games. Susan McNair, Mac Neil's mother, said staying home won't be easy. "I didn't grow up anticipating I would have a child in the Olympics," McNair said. "I didn't anticipate if she did make the Olympics that we would ever not be there.