The Brazilian consul general’s Aug. 10 letter, “Olympics ready, despite challenges,” reveals the sensitivity of those whose countries are not prime-time players.
I have been to Rio de Janeiro many times, and the people there are warm and friendly.
They also are angry at their government for spending money on two major sporting events while ignoring their needs.
Is the consul general not aware that the protests began in 2013 during the FIFA Confederations Cup?
I was there that summer for six weeks.
The real truth is that Brazil is not organized enough to host such events.
For example, when the pope went to Rio in 2013, no one knew when the streets of Copacabana would be closed.
Many of the enthusiastic young pilgrims were left stranded because the government could not get the word out.
I took a short bus trip within the state of Rio that year.
I bought the tickets with my two sons present.
When we boarded the bus, the driver asked for their documents.
The woman who sold us the tickets never explained that minors needed documents.
I argued with the Federal Police and told them that they are not ready to host these type of major events if they cannot provide basic information to their visitors.
How would any foreign visitor to Rio know the federal laws of Brazil?
The consul general should get real.
The United States hosted the World Cup in 1994.
It was the most attended World Cup in history and it was organized and smooth.
The United States also has hosted several Olympic Games with few problems.
The consul general should listen to his people and stop trying to defend Brazil’s mistake in hosting these games.