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SBD Global/June 11, 2012/Olympics
Gun-Posing Aussie Swimmers To Be Sent Home From Games After Competing
Published June 11, 2012
CLAIMS OF HYPOCRISY: In Melbourne, Wes Hosking reported that swimmer Eamon Sullivan "has accused Australian team officials of hypocrisy" over the gun-toting controversy because "athletes attended a shooting event in the name of team building." Sullivan "jumped to the defence" of his teammates. He told Channel 9, "They haven't really done anything wrong. Shooting is an Olympic sport -- shooters don't get in trouble for posing in their Speedos." It came as the AOC was "accused of double standards" for allowing Olympic shooter Lauryn Mark to strip down for Zoo Weekly magazine. The AOC said that it would "not stop Mark's photo shoot" (HERALD SUN, 6/11). Sullivan said that Swimming Australia took the team to a Canberra rifle range "as part of a bonding session" in '07. Sullivan argued that shooting is an Olympic sport and "shooters don't get into trouble posing in their Speedos." Also in Melbourne, David Murray reported Swimming Australia was "due to make its own judgment" after a Monday meeting (HERALD SUN, 6/11). In Sydney, Samantha Lane noted that "an embarrassing double standard has been exposed" as Swimming Australia now faces "pressure from dissenting London-bound athletes." Australian Swimmers' Association President Brenton Rickard said, "I think ultimately they look a little silly and stupid posing like tough guys in photos, but at the same time, to me, they've just participated in a legitimate pastime and unfortunately they've been portrayed in this harsh light" (SYDNEY MORNING HERALD, 6/11). Meanwhile, Craig Christopher wrote that D'Arcy and Monk have been portrayed as "not only reactionary but mean-spirited." Also, it seems that the AOC is "not above partaking in a healthy dose of hypocrisy." Swimming Australia "took the swimming team to a gun range as part of a team-bonding exercise" prior to the 2008 Beijing Games. Apparently, "firing guns is okay, but being photographed with them is a heinous crime." The AOC "seems to be lacking the Olympic spirit and due regard for fair play" (BLEACHER REPORT.com, 6/10).