Big Events, Big Exploitation!

by B.J. on 4/23/2008 10:47:00 PM 0 comments Print this post

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Big Events, Big Exploitation!

What's behind these big events...the Olympics, the World Cup. What happens behind the scenes to make the event happen and what happens outside of it?

Obviously, it's a great stage to make social statements, as the camps from Darfur and Tibet have already made some noise, but nowadays I wonder what kind of social injustices are perpetuated by having these large-scale events themsleves.

Last year, I was reading the book Planet of Slums by Mike Davis. I read a particularly interesting piece about the various measures numerous governments have taken against folks living in "slums" during big events.

Long and repeated story short, when there's a big event coming to town, governments have generally responded by strong-arming their way through people's housing.

Its happened anytime anywhere from the Berlin Olympics in 1936, to the bunches of conferences during the Marcos Regime, to Atlanta in 1996, and is happening now in preparation for the 2008 Beijing Olympics. 1.5 million folks suddenly homeless. Folks pushed off their dwellings to "sanitize" the city for visitors and tourists.

So much for "Communist" China.

It's also interesting (and disturbing) that a report came out about the spike in the sex trafficking trade in the 2006 World Cup.

Trafficking in the World Cup

But I guess that's not terribly shocking. Anytime there's an event like that, there's bound to be lots of dubious contact like that.

So to answer the question I posed about what social injustices happen in preparation for a large scale event:

1) Housing losses
2) Lots of sex trafficking



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