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08-11-2008, 07:23 PM
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As has been pointed out, the whole concept of "amateur" sports, including the Olympics, is a relatively modern idea thought up by the wealthy for the sole purpose of keeping out the riff-raff. If you couldn't afford to spend your time pursuing sports and had to actually work for a living, you were not a "gentleman" and therefore, not good enough to mix with those who were "gentlemen."

In modern Olympic games, every single one of the Soviet block countries was a pro. If you're pining away for a time when the Olympics involved only "real" amateurs, you're pining away for a time that never existed. Even the original Olympic Games in ancient Greece were not amateur. I see absolutely no reason why a person should be prevented from representing his country just because he makes a living playing sports.

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