August 22, 2008
Fans of the Fourth-Place Medal real medal count just picked up one more reason to dismiss judged sports. Steven Lopez, a two-time gold medalist, lost the match that would have sent him into the gold-medal match on a controversial referee's decision. He filed a protest, but that was badly bungled, according to taekwondo team leader Herb Perez. Taekwondo is rumored to be on the chopping block for Olympic sports, and they didn't need any bad publicity. They probably should have mentioned that to the the judges.
"When (poor judging) happens to you, you're told to shut up and not say anything because of what will happen to you, or what will happen to the sport," Perez said. "If this is truly what taekwondo is about, maybe taekwondo shouldn't be in the Olympics. Maybe they should fix it."
Oh, Herb. With taekwondo at the very end of the Olympics, I assume that you have been busy helping your athletes prepare to compete. You probably haven't seen that bad judging is exactly what the Olympics are about, and if that's what taekwondo is about, it will always have a home in the games. Just ask Ara Abrahamian and Alicia Sacramone.
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