Op-ed pick: Saying no to Sochi

The Guardian’s Heidi Moore – a frequent guest on The Daily Circuit – published an op-ed piece last week on why she’s decided to boycott broadcasts of the Sochi Olympics. While most of us are tuning in to follow everything from figure skating to the luge competitions, Moore argues that Russia’s stance on gay rights and the environmental problems associated with the construction of the Sochi Olympic venues make it impossible for her to support the games:

This year, to me, it seems like a mistake to ignore the human principles that are being trampled under the snow in Sochi. Many of the abuses in Russia – against gay rights, against the environment, against animals – came after the Olympic contract, almost as if Russian leaders were emboldened by the Olympic imprimatur and financing to not only continue abuses, but create new ones.

For Moore, the answer to her problem with these issues in Russia is to avoid watching the games completely and remove herself from participating in the sponsorship and viewership of the event – whether or not there’s a measurable effect.

I don’t know which will be the case this year – whether Sochi will be the most-watched Olympics or the least-watched. But I do know that, as hard as it will be, I will make sure that my attention, and money, line up with my values. In this case, that means I won’t be watching the Olympics. It may not change the world, but for me, it’s the only economic decision I can live with.

Read Moore’s piece here. Do you think her argument holds value? Are you concerned about the state of this year’s Olympic Games?