Our Real Heroes are Not Celebrities or Athletes

The real heroes are our family members, the person down the street who works two jobs to feed his family or the lady who works at the bank who greets you because she wants to rather than has to. Our heroes are not necessarily the footballer who wins an MVP or the actor who takes home the Oscar.

Last month “Blade Runner” Oscar Pistorius became a heroic figure to many who watched the Olympic Games. As an amputee, competing in the able body Olympics, many saw his feat as remarkable and looked up to him as a source of inspiration. Some queried that his custom-made blades might give him an unfair advantage over the others, but those arguments were quashed by the outpouring of love and respect from the general community.

To hear Pistorius’ unsportsmanlike rant post-race of the Paralympics 200 meter event just reminds us to look up to heroes that we know, rather than those appointed by spin doctors and television executives looking for a ratings boost:

‘Blade Runner’ Oscar Pistorius suffered a shock defeat at the Paralympics tonight, and immediately claimed that the man who beat him had an unfair advantage.

The South African athlete, who became the first double amputee to run at the Olympics less than a month ago, came second behind Brazilian sprinter Alan Oliveira in the T44 200m event.

Pistorius began the final as the big favourite, and the result stunned the 80,000 spectators inside London’s Olympic Stadium into silence.

But the race was surrounded by controversy after Pistorius claimed that he was at a disadvantage because the carbon fibre prosthetic blades he uses to run are shorter than some of his competitors’.He complained that athletes with longer blades are assisted because their stride lengths are greater.Oliveira, one of the athletes who uses longer blades than Pistorius, won the race in 21.45secs.

Pistorius, who had led for most of the race, finished in 21.52secs.

Immediately after the race, Pistorus said the International Paralympic Committee (IPC) did not ‘want to listen’ to his concerns, adding: ‘The guys’ legs are unbelievably long.

Even if he does have a point, this is not the time to raise it. Heroes are not bad sports. The real heroes are all around us. We just don’t seem to notice them.

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One Response to “Our Real Heroes are Not Celebrities or Athletes”

  1. John Tapscott Says:

    The bad sports are in the media, who report on such tripe. When you have athletes with so many different degrees within the same kind of disability regardless of prostheses it is nearly impossible to create a level playing field. It might be argued that Pistorius’ prostheses give him an unfair advantage over able bodied athletes but all this is to miss the point. Winning is great but if that was the main point of the competition there would be no point.

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