The Summer Olympics in Brazil are about two crises away from becomingthe embodiment of that dumpster fire gif everyone on the Internet is obsessed with.
They are about six weeks away normally, this would be the time when excitement would start building. Instead, it’s hard to read the news and not feel like the whole thing is going to be an unmitigated disaster.
Need evidence? We’ve compiled some of the nation’s most notable screw-ups (and misfortunes) ahead of the Games.
A soldier killed the Olympic mascot
A solidershot and killedajaguar representing the Olympic’s mascot after the animal escaped its handlers at a torch ceremony inManaus, Brazil, on Tuesday.
Juma, the jaguar, was reportedly tranquilized before being shot after allegedly approaching a soldier.
The local organizing committee said it had “made a mistake in permitting the Olympic torch, a symbol of peace and unity, to be exhibited alongside a chained wild animal.”
An IOC official called Brazil’s preparations “the worst I’ve experienced”
In May of 2014, mild panic over the the preparation of 2016 Summer Olympics had already begun.
International Olympic Committee Vice President John Coates called Rio’s preparation, “the worst I’ve experienced.”
There was brief talk of a “plan B” that would allow London to host the Games again, as they’d done in 2012, though that idea never had much merit.
The Zika virus continues to spook athletes and others
This isn’t an issue caused by the screw-ups of Brazilian officials, so much as it is just general misfortune.
The Zika virus which sometimes causes no symptoms, but can lead to significant birth defects in children if contracted by pregnant women has spread to around 1.5 million people in Brazil since health experts believed it wasintroduced to the country in 2014.
The alarm over the disease’s spread has caused some athletes such as third-ranked golfer Rory McIlroy to pull out of the Olympics.
But the risk of contracting the virus is tiny while on a visit to Rio because the city is hundreds of miles away from the area of Brazil where the vast majority of new cases occur.
The World Health Organization recently released a statement saying there’s no reason to postpone the Games due to Zika, as some have called for.
One of the bays used for water sports is full of raw sewage and ‘super bacteria’
Guanabara Bay will be the site of sailing and windsurfing competitions at this year’s Olympics, but concern began to bubble up in 2015 about sailors and surfers having to navigate raw sewage, plastic bags and even animal carcasses floating in the heavily polluted body of water.
And then late in 2014, a strain of drug-resistant “super bacteria” known as the KPC enzyme was found in bay water.
Officials initially promised to reduce pollution in the bay by 80 percent, though that goal quickly became impossible as clean-up efforts stalled.
The country is in an economic and political crisis
Brazilian President Dilma Rousseff has been impeached. Many feel her impeachment was undeserved. The nation is in the middle of a massive corruption crisis that implicates national politicians from multiple parties. Brazil is also in a recession that might be the worst the nation has seen in more than a century. Other than that, plenty of reason to celebrate.
A walkway collapsed and killed two pedestrians the day the Olympic torch was lit
A massive wave crashed into a newly built bike path in Rio in April, destroying a section of what was supposed to be a “legacy project” of the Olympics, and killing two people who were on the path at the time of the wave.
The path was supposed to help connect Olympic venues, but instead called attention to safety standards ahead of the games.
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