Why the anti-Brazil campaign should take it easy
With the biggest football tournament just one summer away, many have questioned the ethics of the host nation spending tens of billions of dollars on a sporting event while millions struggle with poverty, unemployment, and the ever-rising prices of public transportation. There's also the added danger of violent protesters who erroneously think that burning everything from tires to buses will do something about changing the costs of public transportation. When it comes to a large international tournament, however, it's highly doubtful there won't be increased security.
Every World Cup has a series of long-lasting effects on the host nation that will certainly be ignored and diminished in value by the pessimist, who will only note the obvious problems that arise with the tournament and add on to already-existing issues - the dirty streets, the traffic jams, increased hooliganism...What such a person fails to see is the true impact that the beautiful game has on a nation.
While stadiums may not directly improve the life quality of the population, they will continue to be used for football games long after the tournament is over, growing the sport and allowing more people to pursue their athletic dreams. More athletes means more opportunities for scholarships, and thus education.
"People are dying due to lack of infrastructure", says the boycott supporter, completely disregarding that this problem exists in many other nations, including those that have previously hosted large-scale tournaments. One could just as easily criticize supporters of bringing the Cup to the United States, where 36 percent of deaths in 2000 were due to social deprivation. Two years ago, almost 16 percent of the U.S. population had income below poverty level, a number that continues to rise as more and more workers are laid off in attempts to balance budgets. The poverty levels in Brazil have actually decreased tremendously as those of the U.S. have continued to linger.
Before the 2010 World Cup, South Africa struggled to meet its economic goals, in part due to a lack of much-needed infrastructure, such as public transportation. Hosting the WC pushed the government to take action and make significant improvements that last well beyond the duration of the tournament. That does not change the fact that people continue to die due to insufficient care in hospitals, but who's to say that a tournament should or must be the solution to this problem, or that the government is incapable of working towards solving such issues while simultaneously contributing to other aspects of the country's economy and culture?
|An anti-World Cup post that was popular on tumblr.|
The World Cup not only brings nations together, but bridges the gap between all corners of the world. People come together from across the many continents and bodies of water to enjoy the same passion they all share. Does that not make a great opportunity for some of these people to also volunteer and help when they are not going to games? Instead of protesting against hosting the tournament, why not rally the thousands of tourists to support the local populations and help out however they can?
Would you rather host the Cup in an overly-wealthy nation like Qatar, or in a nation where proceeds from tickets, souvenirs, hotels, and restaurants may provide a boost for its economy, all while entertaining the masses? Not all the money earned goes to FIFA, unless football's governing body happens to own all of the aforementioned services.
Football is also an outlet for creativity, much like the cinema or fine arts. Regardless of a nation's issues, would you protest any government investing millions of dollars in museums?
Boycotting the World Cup isn't going to solve Brazil's problems, and hosting the tournament may not contribute as much as is necessary, but it certainly will bring more good than harm, and at the end of the day, that is always welcome.