Maman Poulet | Clucking away crookedly through media, politics and life

Some Athletes are more equal than others – surprise surprise!

January 2nd, 2009 · 1 Comment · Disability

When I heard this morning that Tanni Grey-Thompson (Dame (as in royal honored and not panto) and paralympian extraordinaire) was pointing out the lack of parity in UK honours awarded to able bodied and disabled olympians I was a bit shocked.

I had heard she was on the committee that awards the gongs these days and her track record on disability equality is hardly radical. In short the story goes that every UK Olympian who won gold got an award in the honours list released this week, only half of the paralympians who won gold got a honour and there were many differences in the category of honour awarded between disabled and able bodied athletes with paralympians coming out worse.

So true to form this evening in my reader comes a post to Comment is Free from Tanni disassociating herself from the comments and saying that disabled athletes who won gold may not necessarily have the same career history.

When it comes to the honours system, a certain colour or number of medals doesn’t automatically result in an award. For every sportsperson recognised there will be a huge number who are not. There is a process to be followed, and part of that process involves discussing many aspects of the career of those who are nominated

What a load of backpedalling rubbish! I have a feeling some of the athletes will have a thing or 20 to say about that except it’s not cool to do so. But the rest of us can point it out!

(Let’s not go into debates on honours systems etc – I do think states should recognise people for commitment, achievements and voluntary service but the debate above is about equality I think.)

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