The Olympic Ceremonies are a Trainwreck Before They've Started as People in Charge are Getting Fired for Old Holocaust Jokes and Torturing Disabled Kids

Masatoshi Okauchi. Shutterstock Images.

I'm a big proponent of the idea that sometimes the universe sends us messages, and you have to be willing to listen. Regardless of your belief system. If you believe existence is controlled by a deity, or by pure science, or by a predetermined, all power fate, or whatever, sometimes whatever great entity is in charge of this vast, cosmic poker game sometimes has a tell. And you'd better figure it out before you go bust. 

By way of example, say you've got a party to go to. But you were busy and it got late you can't find your keys and you forget your wallet and there's an accident on the highway causing a backup. How many times does a day like that get better as it goes? That was the universe telling you something bad is going to happen at that party and you're better off just bagging it and watching Netflix. Which is a long preamble to the topic at hand, which is the Tokyo Olympics which start tomorrow. 

How many bad omens do we need before we just cancel these things altogether? And I'm not just talking about the fact something like 85% of the people in the host country want to give the whole thing a good leaving alone. Or all the athletes who are already testing positive for the 'Vid. I'm talking about more subtle signs. Like the bear that's running around. Or the fact the first thing to come out of the IOC president's mouth was to call the people who are having these events jammed down their heavily masked throats, "Chinese"? Or the fact that six Polish swimmers had their dreams crushed because someone lost count of how many are allowed on the team

But there are still more ominous of pending doom. In literature, we'd call it foreshadowing. Portents that should lead us all to the same conclusion.

Giphy Images.

Daily Beast - Kentaro Kobayashi, director of the Tokyo Olympics’ opening ceremony, was dismissed late Wednesday over footage of him joking about the Holocaust.

Kobayashi, 48, joked about the Holocaust as a “let’s massacre Jewish people game” in one clip from 1998, previously made his name as part of a comedy duo dubbed Ramens.

Japan’s Olympic Minister Seiko Hashimoto said … she learned of Kobayashi’s offensive jokes Tuesday morning and that she regretted how long it took to fire the comedian. …

Just this week, Japanese composer Keigo Oyamada pulled out of the opening ceremony after old interviews in which he admitted to bullying resurfaced. 

Oyamada, 52, bragged in the 1990s that he forced a disabled boy to masturbate in front of others and to eat his own feces. A musical piece he composed for the ceremony has been dropped from the extravaganza.

As a general rule, I'm not a big advocate for someone losing their job over something they did in the 1990s. Even violent crimes have a statute of limitations in a real court. But this is the court of public opinion, so everything stays in play and you have to play your past stupidity where it lies. Besides, while admittedly not knowing the context of that Holocaust skit, I'm going to have to default to the idea that it was about as harmlessly funny as … well, forcing a disabled boy to masturbate and eat his own shit in front of a crowd. Which is to say, tragic and horrifying. 

Even though, if we're being honest, in some countries that will be competing in the Games, Holocaust jokes and sexually humiliating special needs kids is probably a national pastime. Something they do at parties like we play Cornhole and Flip Cup. But still, when you're already putting on the most unwanted global event since World War II, you can't afford the extra PR hit that will come from Bob Costas saying, "Tonight's Opening Ceremony is directed by Kentaro Kobayashi, the author of such legendary Ramens bits as "500 Jews in a Train Car," "Laughing Gas Chamber," and "A Pair of Twins Walk Into Dr. Mengele's Office." Or Mary Carillo chiming in with, "This beautiful orchestral piece from Keigo Oyamada was inspired by the joy of tormenting a mentally challenged child when he was younger." Tokyo 2020 has enough problems without creating more. 

So like I said, this is just another alarm bell going off telling us disaster looms with these Games. It's like that old story about the guy who hears a warning on TV that a flood is coming and everyone needs to evacuate. But he stays put because God will save him. When the water is up to his second floor, a rescue boat comes. But he refuses, because God will save him. When it rises again, he's on his roof, and a rescue helicopter comes. Again he refuses, because God will take care of him. When he inevitably drowns he asks God what's up, because he thought he'd be saved. And God says, "I sent a warning, a boat and a helicopter. What more did you need?"