** Spoiler alert, if you have no clue what’s going on in women’s gymnastics.**
For those of you who are upset about Jordyn Wieber not making it into the gymnastics all-around, I suggest you go read Gold by Chris Cleave. It’s an amazing Olympic novel about a pair of track cyclists who race for their livelihoods when their sport changes to allow only one woman per country to race at the London Olympiad. Not only does it boast some awesome characters and a riveting plot (and, unlike his book Little Bee, I can read it without wanting to be sick), but it paints a new picture of Olympic competition – and what happens even before medals are awarded.
Because the fact of the matter is, these are sports we’re talking about. They’re not always fair or objective, and there are made to be winners and losers – sometimes even on the same team. Yes, Jordyn is the world champion – but that might just mean that on the day of the world championship, she did better than anyone else. And yesterday wasn’t her day – Aly and Gabby simply outperformed her. It could happen to anyone. Whether or not it’s fair to limit each country to 2 max participants in the all-around is another issue, but Jordyn knew that going into it, and probably wouldn’t have cared about the fairness as long as she was one of the two. It’s not like allowing the top 3 – as in previous years – is inherently more fair.
What do you think? Was Jordyn scored unfairly? Do these rules make any sense? Is it weird that a competition to promote unity and conversation among nations is so focused on winners and losers? Weigh in below!