Though Sun Yang won gold in the 200 meter freestyle event, proving his ability, the Chinese people still haven’t let go of Mack, not Mark, Horton’s “drug cheat” insult against their beloved idol. Yesterday, French swimmer Camille Lacourt sided with Horton, saying that Sun “pisses purple,” but now Sun has his own high-profile defender, CCTV anchor Bai Yansong.
On Monday, CCTV broadcast the news that the Chinese swim team had formally sent an email to the Australian swim team, asking them to apologize for Horton’s comments. The frame then switched to Bai, who was in Rio, for his commentary on the situation. He did not hold back:
The most disgraceful thing about Horton’s statement is not that he said Sun Yang took drugs, but that he called him a “cheat.” Sun served a ban of 3 months because it was a misunderstanding, or else it would never have been such a short period of time. Now, who did Sun cheat? Was it the Chinese Anti-Doping Agency? Or the World Anti-Doping Agency’s (WADA)? The “cheat” also implies that Sun Yang is currently taking drugs. There is no evidence to prove Horton’s statement; thus, he should not make such a claim.
Media reports that in 2012, Australian swimmers were involved in doping scandals. How does Horton sleep knowing that his teammates are “drug cheats.” We really can’t call Horton a bastard because that would be an insult to bastards. With his critique of Sun Yan, he really crossed the line.
To conclude, Horton should really start taking pills because he is clearly mentally unstable.
Though Bai accused Australian swimmers of being involved in doping scandals back in the 2012 Olympics, it isn’t the case. The team misused prescription drugs, not drugs that would enhance their performance, BBC reports. The Australian swim team had one of the poorest performances that year, only winning one gold medal, due to the prescription drug misuse, a culture of bullying and a lack of discipline. However, the cycling team was involved in a doping scandal.
Factual or not, Chinese netizens were delighted by Bai’s candid remarks.
“CCTV is the best network ever,” @-猴大宝- wrote.
“I hope he comes to China one day so I can run him over with a tractor,” @放学有种跟我去小卖部 wrote.
“I love people that are direct like Bai Yansong,” @bwb_boom wrote.
Sticks and stones will break your bones, but words will never hurt you. Or in Horton’s case, words will make 1.3 billion people hate you.
The Olympics generally tries to keep politics out of sports, but Bai isn’t a fan of that separation. During the opening ceremony on Friday, Bai suddenly went quiet when Team Philippines walked into the stadium, refusing to introduce the country. When the news broke on Weibo, the top liked comment read, “Staying silent is as respectful as we can be.”
Just yesterday, Australian television network Channel 7 apologized for cutting Team China’s entry into the stadium due to an ill-timed commerical break.
Will CCTV apologize? Or will they stay silent (again)?
By Sarah Lin
[Images via Souhu]