The picture on the left is a photo of the Canadian woman's hockey team celebrating their gold-medal victory after their win last evening. The photo on the right is a photo of US snowboarder Scotty Lago celebrating his bronze-medal win from about 10 days ago. Take a look at these two pictures and tell me what the difference is.
Both are celebrations but one is condoned and one is shunned. Let's take a deeper look:
- Scotty Lago, picture on the right, was asked to leave Vancouver quickly and to lay low after these pictures were released.
- The ladies on the left (and who knows, one may be called Scotty), are hailed as heroes for their Olympic celebration.
- Lago, age 22, was out after-hours celebrating with friends when an unauthorized photo was taken and given to the press.
- The Canadian woman's hockey team left the ice for their locker room — a very private place where they could have smoked cigars and drank all night long if they chose — and returned with alcohol and cigars, and mugged for the cameras they knew were there.
- Lago is of age to be in a nightclub where alcohol is served.
- Several woman on the Canadian hockey team are under age and were drinking illegally, including their superstar Marie-Phillip Poulin.
Not here to judge Lago or the Canadian woman's hockey team — it all comes down to respect. Respect for rules set forth for Olympic athletes. Respect for law of the land. Respect for your opponent. And most important, respect for one's self.
At worst, what Lago did was in poor taste. What the women hockey players did lacked judgment and broke the law. Period. I understand the euphoria these Olympians must have felt and what may have moved them to celebrate, but the hockey team had the coaching staff present and what they did was calculated. And therein lies the difference.