Kenneth Deer: Olympic host broke promise to Iroquois Nationals

"Soon the world will be watching the greatest sporting event in modern times and the United Kingdom will be in the spotlight with all its glory. But its glory is ill-founded.

In 2010, the United Kingdom did not allow the Iroquois Nationals into the country to compete in the World Lacrosse Championships. This was a flagrant violation of the Olympic spirit.

While the Lacrosse Championship is not part of the Games, it is in the spirit of the Games that the Olympics were given to the UK. The UK is supposed to espouse the highest integrity of sport as part of its responsibility.

Sport is supposed to be about competition and the friendship that it inspires. Win or lose, there is a bond that develops between athletes that transcends the game itself. Friendships last for decades and crosses nationalities and borders.

By denying the entry of the Iroquois Nationals, the UK broke its promise to the world that it can responsibly host different nationalities to compete on the playing field. And the whole affair resurrected the image of a former colonial power continuing its superiority over an Indigenous people."

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Kenneth Deer: The UK Olympic Opening Ceremony Rings Hollow (Indian Country Today 7/27)

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