Sorting Out the Ryan Lochte Story

The Ryan Lochte story needs to be sorted out. While I support national sovereignty over loss of sovereignty to global alliances, I only support sovereignty that comes with mutual respect.

The old idea of the ugly American, or the ugly German, or sometime now, the ugly Israeli comes to mind as an abuse of sovereignty, a patriotism gone wrong.

One could even add Donald Trump to that camp, not respecting Mexico apparently because he lost a big deal there and had to pay up in a lawsuit. But this article isn't about that ugly American, Donald Trump. It is about the ugly American, Ryan Lochte.

Lochte and his friends were allegedly drinking and some vandalism occurred at a convenience store in Brazil during the Olympics. Lochte and his friends claimed, allegedly, that they were robbed at gunpoint. It turns out that security at the store simply demanded payment for the damage that the Americans caused.

That would have been the end of it, damages done, damages paid for. But when Lochte and his friends apparently filed a police report saying they were robbed, it looked to many as a coverup of what really happened.

The Brazilian government has since filed charges against Lochte for filing a false police report. He has lost most sponsors and is relegated to reality TV, like Dancing with the Stars. He has been banned from the 2020 Olympics, and more punishment from the Olympic leadership may follow.

Lochte made a minor situation worse because the Rio games were far safer than reports said prior to the games. Those reports were all over the news. Rio proved those authors wrong. But then came Lochte and company, placing a stain on the Olympic games themselves just to cover up vandalism.

A young person's mistake, minor vandalism, turned into a disastrous slander, in my opinion, against the nation of Brazil. That is why Ryan Lochte is in so much trouble.

He will always, being famous or infamous now, have reality TV to fall back on. One only has to look back to Tanya Harding, banned from skating when her team attacked a competitor, Nancy Kerrigan, in the knee.

It is a sad chapter in American behavior abroad. But as long as empire controls our leaders and their ambitions for world dominance, ugly American behavior will continue. It is almost bred into people from an early age, that the USA is number one.

Unfortunately, we are both number one in good things and number one in bad behavior, all the way up to and including regime change, which is a policy of the USA. It is disrespectful to sovereignty, and makes America the thug, not the policeman, of the world.

That role as policeman changed to role as thug came with the election of George W. Bush and Richard Cheney. We have not recovered from that behavior and will likely not anytime soon, under any president we elect. Absolute power corrupts absolutely.

Ryan Lochte apparently is a young example of a wider American problem, the arrogance of power, manifested for all the world to see.


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