Monday, January 14, 2008

IAAF Hates the Disabled

Is that OK? Can I say "disabled"? Or is it "slightly less-abled, in certain specific ways that are dependent on physical characteristics typically found in a majority of the populace"? The IAAF ruled today that Oscar Pistorius is a persona non grata, as far as its competitions are concerned. The ruling made the frontpage of NYTimes.com for a portion of the morning and apparently "hinged" on energy absorption ratios in Pistorius' j-blades versus the human ankle. (Get it? "Hinged?")

What I found FAR more interesting, though, is that the Times built a slideshow comparing the "muscle" systems in Pistorius and those in, shall we say "traditional"? human legs. Without asserting it outright, the captions in the slideshow clearly suggest that someone at the Times thinks Pistorius is actually at a significant disadvantage and is getting screwed. I'm surprised that a major (the major?) paper would give the story such coverage, let alone care enough to position itself on one side of the debate or the other.

Then again, I can see their point: I've used something similar to the j-blade and must admit they didn't make me any faster.

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