Are you going to the Tokyo Olympics? Do you live in Japan? Well then…you probably aren’t going if you answered no to that last question. The International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced that limited fans will be allowed at the Olympic events starting next month.
Their cap is set at 50% of each venue and up to 10,000 fans max. Only local fans will be in attendance as Japan is not opening up for international travel. Anyone that is non-essential on the Olympic teams will not be allowed into Japan.
Japanese Medical Professionals Hold Fast With Their Decision
What are you still doing? Wearing masks? Social Distancing? Isolating? Most Americans aren’t really doing any of these. Maybe some of you might be still social distancing if anything. However, the United States is doing a lot better than Japan. Japanese medical professionals have long urged the government to cancel the games, especially when Tokyo was under a state of emergency with high Covid-19 rates until May.
In the last few weeks, the positivity rate in Tokyo dropped below 4%. Did Tokyo all of a sudden get it together? Or did the Tokyo government quit testing as much to get rates down? Or, even getting more positive people to test to bring the testing rates down.
Now, there is no evidence of this happening and it is pure speculation on my part. I know many counties in my state did this to get rates down for the high schools to play sports. Their state of emergency was lifted on Sunday and today is Thursday. The IOC’s announcements came on Monday, but the medical professionals are still against holding the Olympics in Tokyo.
No Yelling or Shouting?!?! Are You Serious?
The IOC said masks will be required for fans and speaking in a loud voice or shouting is prohibited. They assume that speaking loudly or shouting could lead to an increased spread if social distancing is not properly maintained. Can you seriously imagine being at a Team USA Basketball game…Men or Women…and not yelling “THREE” with both arms raised if Kevin Durant or Diana Taurasi drilled one? I can’t. No way.
How are they going to enforce this rule? Are ushers going to be in each section listening for loud voices? Woooo…it is going to be the Quietest Olympics of all time with 10,000 fans present. It’s going to be sad for all of the fans there. However, I will be in my living room or sports bar yelling whenever I want.
Well, Japan’s Covid-19 rates have somehow dropped in a couple of weeks, but vaccination plans haven’t worked at all. Less than 20% of all adults in Japan have gotten the first dose of the vaccine. The IOC expects many of the incoming athletes to be vaccinated. Oh really? Didn’t we all just hear that many of the NBA teams weren’t at the 80% level to get the extra perks? This includes the Los Angeles Lakers.
If you aren’t at 80% then you can’t have team dinners, must wear masks on planes, and must have your team meetings in the same room. That just some of them. The IOC didn’t go fall enough to make a requirement to participate in the Olympic events.
Japan Loss and Fans Loss
With the IOC cutting overall attendance by more than half of the originally projected ticket sales, Japan will lose more than $400 million in revenue. They had to bid on these Olympic games back in 2013. They could have lost even more if they would have had to build new venues like Rio did a couple of years ago.
Tokyo did need to renovate the National Stadium where the 1964 Tokyo Olympics were held. It will hold 68,000 fans, but we will see only 10,000 socially distanced fans during the opening and closing ceremonies. Yes, the Olympics are happening, but like every sport, in the last 18 months, it will be totally different. I hate this, but at least we are getting sports.