Friday, February 12, 2010

Is nothing sacred?

I've had a rather full day today which I intend to blog about later. After a lot of running around I finally found myself at home and able to sit down and watch some Olympic coverage. Bryan recorded the coverage of the opening ceremonies which began here at 7:30PM since I was out running an errand with Madeline. I wasn't all that interested in watching the coverage, but Madeline was so Bryan decided to wait until we got home to watch it. Sadly, that was a bad move.

I would imagine that most people have heard that Nodar Kumaritashvili, a 21 year old luger from Georgia (the country, not the state), crashed to his death while doing a training run on the track. I can't remember if Bryan told me about it when I got home this afternoon, or if I heard about it while we were at dinner. Anyway, I knew it happened before I sat down to watch NBC's Olympic coverage, and I fully expected to hear a lot about it. What I did not expect was to see the video coverage of this young man crashing to his death, and pictures of an EMT trying to tend to this poor athlete who's face was totally bloodied.

Personally, I feel that NBC had no business showing this crash footage twice without any warning that what they were about to show may be traumatic to some viewers. I, for one, do not like to see others meet their demise. I am livid that this footage was aired when millions of families were tuning in to watch this program. Madeline sat on the couch with wide eyes drinking in the images, but I don't think she was affected like I was. Instantly after the first run of the footage I began screaming for the girls to get out of the family room immediately. Bryan was totally unaware that they showed the actual impact. A minute or so later when they showed it again he saw why I was so upset. I'm a bit more detail oriented than he is, so things like the luger's shoe that flew off as a result of the impact stuck with me.

When I came on here to blog about this I did a quick search to find the name of the athlete who lost his life. I was saddened to see that the video of his death is up on YouTube. If one of my children were to die tragically and it was captured on film, I would not want it aired, nor would I want to view it. I can't imagine the pain this young man's parents, family and friends are experiencing right now, and up on the internet is a video of his death.

When I have had more time to collect my thoughts and decompress from my day, I will be taking the time to let NBC know how I feel about their deplorable lack of discretion. If they were going to air it, they should have waited until the late night news when young eyes wouldn't be drinking in the images, or they should have posted a disclaimer giving their viewers fair warning. Honestly, out of respect for the man who lost his life, they shouldn't have shown the coverage at all. Just because you have footage that will garner lots of viewers because of it's shock value doesn't mean you should use it. I suppose I'm expecting too much from a major media outlet to practice decency.


  1. I did hear of his death; I didn't realize it was "plastered" all over the internet and on TV. I remember in the "good old days" they would not have done something like this; I think its a sad statement on how far we have come (in the wrong way) about the whole sanctity of life and respect for loved ones in situations like this


  2. Here here!!! I was shocked and had to turn off the TV - though all networks ran it, and ABC warned parents about it before airing it on their nightly news....ugh!


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