Swimmer in blue bathing cap doing freestyle in a pool.

Should the 2021 Games go ahead?

From an ethics perspective, these Games probably should not go ahead while the world is grappling with COVID-19, says Dr Diego Silva, an expert in public health ethics and infectious diseases ethics from the Sydney School of Public Health.

“But it’s a complex question,” Dr Silva says. “We can’t underestimate the efforts of the Olympians who have worked to get there and what it means to them. As a society, we value excellence in these endeavours and that can’t be ignored, but these are unprecedented times and perhaps sport should take a back seat.”

Dr Steve Georgakis, an expert in sport history and the sociology of sport from the School of Education and Social Work, believes commercial corncerns are driving the Tokyo Games.

“The Games were devised to promote peace and unity around the world, but it seems these Games are only going ahead because of commercial interests,” he says. “They’re going to divide the world, not unite it.

The 2032 Olympics are expected to take place in Brisbane and Dr Georgakis says we should be asking why. “Is it because the International Olympic Committee sees Australia as a safe pair of hands at a time when the Olympic brand will need to be rebuilt?”

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