Seth Udinski, FISM News
In the sphere of athletics, the timing of the COVID-19 pandemic lockdowns has had a greater effect on some leagues and sports than it has on others. The argument can be made that the Olympics was the sports event most dramatically impacted by the lockdown.
The 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympic Games was postponed due to the pandemic and is now set to commence in July of 2021, even in the midst of worldwide opposition. This past week, the IOC reaffirmed that the games would go on, even if Japan were to be in a state of emergency throughout the duration of the Games.
IOC Vice President John Coates spoke in an online news conference to Olympic Games administrators and said,
The advice we have from the WHO [World Health Organization], and all other scientific and medical advice that we have, is that — all the measures we have outlined, all of those measures that we are undertaking, are satisfactory and will ensure a safe and secure Games in terms of health. And that’s the case whether there is a state of emergency or not…our job is to ensure these Games are safe for all the participants and all the people of Japan.
Japanese citizens have been highly critical of the Games happening in July. According to ESPN, between 60% and 80% of citizens believe the Olympics should not commence on July 23. But as of May 23, the Tokyo Olympics are a go.