Terrible violence is happening in Kiev as the Ukrainian government (closely aligned with Moscow) comes down hard on protestors who want closer ties to Europe. According to CNN (reporting information from “the protesters’ medical service”) the current death toll may be as high as 100 civilians with another 500 wounded.
Today, two members of the Ukrainian Olympic team, Alpine skier Bogdana Matsotska and her father and coach Oleg Matsotskyy, withdrew from the Games in support of the protestors and returned home.
“We wanted to wear black armbands to mourn the people who have died in Kiev, but the IOC told us it was not allowed,” Bogdana said. “In these conditions it is simply not possible to compete. We don’t feel comfortable here and we can’t compete.” Her father wrote on his Facebook page that he and his daughter were returning home “…in solidarity with the fighters on the barricades… and as a protest against lawless actions made towards protesters, the lack of responsibility from the side of the president and his lackey government, we refuse further performance at the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games.”
I greatly admire them both for prioritizing the well-being of their countrymen over a chance to win a gold medal.
Teachable Moment: The choices we make in life define who we are.