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NBC’s time in Beijing isn’t on our side

NBC’s Olympic coverage is so delayed on the West Coast that by the time it is seen the Chinese gymnasts are actually 16 years old.

Mike Giachino

Glendale

What could have been one of the most fantastic television events ever, the opening ceremony from Beijing, was absolutely butchered by NBC. The frequent commercial interruptions, especially during the artistic portion, ruined the flow that was so carefully put together by the artist.

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Despite having ample delay to produce the ceremony, NBC chose to place as many ads as possible. I will think twice before I watch any further Olympic coverage on NBC.

Christopher Crosson

Burbank

Most of the world is watching USA vs. China in basketball, but here in the Third World West we have to rely on ESPN for updates.

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So, “Breakfast at Wimbledon” can be aired at 6 a.m. in the West, but China vs. USA in China, in the Olympics, is tape-delayed, for L.A.

For shame, NBC.

Phil J Hilow

Sunland

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It’s 10:10 p.m. on Saturday, Aug. 9. I just watched Michael Phelps win his first gold medal and destroy a world record.

Too bad I had already read about it approximately an hour earlier on websites of newspapers from all around the world.

What’s worse, though, it’s that NBC put the “LIVE” logo on the right top corner of the screen.

We’ve long given up on the hope that NBC will ever do some real live broadcasts of the Olympic Games, but why so blatantly lie about it?

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How stupid does NBC think their viewers are?

Manu Appelius

Los Angeles

Mike Downey [Aug. 9] proclaimed the opening hour of the 2008 Olympics “bent the mind and stretched the imagination” and he concluded that “Chicago is going to go a ways to top this if the 2016 Games do come its way.” Well, Mike, there is no way any city in the USA can possibly top this.

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To begin with, we would have to open our borders to get enough bodies to match the 15,000 performers that trained for months to partake in this spectacle. There is no way any city, or even the federal government, could come up with the funding that would have to include exorbitant insurance coverage of endless litigation regarding almost each and every aspect of an equivalent program. The environmentalists and the ACLU would erect roadblocks impossible to surmount.

The hundreds of mini-skirted girls surrounding the infield and welcoming the athletes as they marched by will be inflicted with numerous skeletal and ligament injuries after dancing nonstop three hours.

There is no way Chicago can clear out neighborhoods and stifle individual rights, as did the Chinese in Beijing. The ACLU and the lawyers will soak enough of the Olympic budget as to reduce the eventual show to the usual Super Bowl halftime show, as is the U.S. standard.

John A. Saylor

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Long Beach

I am disgusted by China’s flagrant age manipulation in women’s gymnastics and by the world’s unwillingness to stand up to this form of cheating. While it is true that women of East Asian ethnicity are generally smaller and look much younger than peers of other ethnic groups, the world knows the difference between a healthy Asian teen and a child.

China wanted to glorify itself on the world stage. Instead China has shown the world it thinks it can get away with its own brand of closed society manipulation at the Olympics. Even worse, the world and the two regulatory bodies that should have policed this sport have proved they are resigned and willing to go along with the charade.

Lisa Kato Fitchett

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Long Beach

Amid the thrills and spills of these Olympic Games lies a major discrepancy between how the sexes perform their routines in gymnastics, specifically the floor exercises. Why is it the men merely carry out their performances while the women’s team feels it is necessary to add music, come-hither looks, and a suggestive swaying of hips between flips and twists?

Let’s bring equality to the Games. Flagrant sexuality has no place here.

Francesca Gard

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Long Beach

It was pure joy to watch Shawn Johnson and Nastia Liukin at the all-around gymnastics final. Not only did these two world-class competitors room together, they cheered each other on. They were like a living lesson in what competition should be -- each athlete wringing out her own personal best on a given day, completely focused on delivering a top-notch performance, not diminishing someone else’s. These two young women are class acts of the tallest order. Ladies, we’ve come a long way!

Adrian Hein Prevost

Los Angeles

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Add this “true Olympic moment” to Bill Dwyre’s list [Aug. 15]:

In the 2004 Olympics, an American gymnast so bungled his routine that he fell onto the scorers’ table. Later, due to a mathematical error, he was awarded the gold medal. When the error was discovered, he refused to return the medal. He was loudly supported by the U.S. Olympic Committee and American sportswriters.

After that display of bad sportsmanship, no American should ever use the words “ethics” and “Olympics” in the same paragraph.

Steve Emmons

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Costa Mesa

Great, now that Bill Plaschke [Aug. 15] has cast a shadow of doubt over Michael Phelps’ achievements and asked him the question during a news conference, how about doing a follow-up on all the extra testing that has been done? He mentioned it in one little statement, but as this was the main focus, dig a little deeper. Do an in-depth report as to the extent and frequency that Phelps volunteers for. Tests that he asks for. Tests that he repeats to go above reproach.

Hey, Plaschke writes a decent column every once in a while. Shouldn’t he be compared to Jayson Blair?

Jim Fikar

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Sandy, Utah

The sheer number of medals, or world records for that matter, should not be the only factor to consider when designating someone “The Greatest Olympian Ever,” as Bob Costas and the others seem inclined to do. Personally, I feel the achievement of Al Oerter -- winning the gold medal in the discus in four consecutive Olympics -- is an even greater accomplishment. Not to demean Michael Phelps in any way, but his records will be broken someday. Will Oerter’s?

Geronimo Graves

Barstow

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A gold medal to Robert Gauthier for that outstanding shot of Michael Phelps in Sunday’s paper. I had goose bumps when I opened that section.

Audrey J. Taylor

Orange

Beach volleyball at best is beach fun. As an Olympic event, forget about it. What’s next in the Olympics, pro wrestling or kite flying?

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Jay Korelius

Granada Hills


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