2014 Sochi Olympics: American Lugers Not Thrilled With Canadian Gay Rights Commercial (Video)
There are a number of Winter Olympic sports that get made fun of a lot. People can be pretty hard on curling (or ice shuffle board), and ice dancing certainly takes its fair share of abuse given the fact that it’s basically figure skating without all the cool jumps and tricks.
However, no sport gets ripped more than doubles luge. It’s two guys in spandex lying on top of each other and doing what basically amounts to extreme sledding. Until they introduced the luge team relay this year, doubles luge was quite possibly the most pointless event in the Winter Games. I mean, why? Why two? Why not three, or while we’re at it, four?
This isn’t to say that the people who do doubles luge aren’t amazing athletes. They are, and I’m sure they could list off ten good reasons why doubles luge should be an Olympic sport right now. I’m just saying the whole thing seems kind of silly, and they really do have an uphill battle when it comes to the public’s perception of what they do.
For that reason, there are a couple of American lugers who were not too happy when the Canadian Institute of Diversity and Inclusion released this commercial last week:
On the one hand, this is a pretty great commercial with a pretty great punchline. It takes something that used to be an insult—saying “that’s gay”—and flips it around.
However, American Olympic luger Jayson Terdiman said the gay jokes are pretty tired (and with a name like Terdiman, I bet this guy knows a thing or two about tired jokes).
Terdiman’s teammate, Christian Niccum, elaborated:
“They’re making fun of our sport for their cause and it doesn’t really make a lot of sense to me. If I were to go hug my dad and someone took a picture and showed it in really slow motion, they could use it in a video like that and that’s just ridiculous. It’s my dad. Can’t we show affection to each other without it being some sort of sexual contact? This is sports. It’s the same thing. Why does it have to be like that?”
You can see his point, can’t you? It’s not that being called gay is an insult. It’s that the joke kind of belittles what they do by suggesting doubles luge isn’t so much a sport as a thing gay guys do for fun on the weekend. If they’d likened doubles luge to heterosexual sex, you’d have the same problem: it’s just a juvenile thing to do.
Of course, I like juvenile jokes, so I’m not really one to judge.
What do you think, oh wise internet?
Hat Tip – [New York Times]