18.8.16

THE EMERGENCE OF CONCENTRATION.

In sports, yesterday was a very good day for United States Olympians in the track and field events.
In a span of about 60 minutes Wednesday night, U.S. athletes hauled in a bevy of medals: [Tianna] Bartoletta and Brittney Reese went 1-2 in the long jump, Tori Bowie captured a bronze in the 200 and Brianna Rollins, Nia Ali and Kristi Castlin swept the medals in the 100-meter hurdles — a feat that's never been accomplished in that event.

A banner evening, for sure. The nation entered the night with 13 medals [in track] and left the track with a total of 19 — five gold, seven silver, seven bronze.
Plus a Wisconsin runner earning a silver in the human steeplechase, and a few other victories.

But does the popular culture regard achievement in sport the same way it regards achievement in other endeavours?
Advocates of the fair go will see the accumulation of small advantages by people already advantaged in the emergence of the current crop of personal computer millionaires (many of whom were born about the same time I was, in neighborhoods that valued intellectual life, with sufficient disposable income to be able to put in thousands of hours programming while their less fortunate contemporaries were throwing newspapers or tending crops) as entranching existing hierarchies.
You decide.

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