by Anura Guruge
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NBC’s as ever jingoistic coverage of the Olympics drives me nuts every 2 years. Yes, I understand that ‘some’ of the U.S. viewing population expects this but to be the Olympics is a chance to appreciate and celebrate global achievement across boundaries. I truly think that NBC no longer even realizes how jingoistic it is when it comes to the Olympics given that, from my estimation, about 80% of their ‘talking heads’ are so insular and ignorant that to call them ‘ignorames‘ would be a disservice that very noble word.
That they did NOT give the proper recognition due to Valentina Tereshkova, one of the eight distinguished Olympic flag bearers at the Opening Ceremony is just an example of this ignorant jingoism. Yes, they said that all eight were ‘distinguished’ — put up a graphic (a few times) with all eight names — and mentioned that one was an ‘astronaut’. Well to call Valentina Tereshkova just an astronaut is like saying that Hillary Clinton was an ex-First Lady.
Valentina Tereshkova was the FIRST woman in space.
That can never be denied, overlooked or rewritten.
She predated the the first U.S. woman in space
by EXACTLY 20 years!
I could be wrong on this, but from my reckoning,
she is also the ONLY woman to have flown SOLO in space.
All the others flew in multi-crew missions —
all the Americans only ever having flown on the
somewhat salubrious Shuttles.
When I told the kids that she was the FIRST woman in space
they both STOPPED and took notice.
Teischan even went “WOW“.
It did not matter to them that she was not an American.
What mattered was that she was a FEMALE.
That she was the FIRST female in space made an impact
on the kids.
It is about bloody time that NBC grew up
and is able to come to terms with this.
To kids, especially today, post Cold War,
nationality doesn’t matter as much as
Yes, I know that most Americans have NEVER heard of her,
just like how they have never heard of