September 13, 2017
Dear Members of the International Olympic Committee,
Today you are announcing a decision that will fundamentally and detrimentally alter the course of the lives of many Los Angelenos. Sadly, the heaviest cost will be paid by the most vulnerable: the homeless, the poor, immigrants and communities of color.
You’ll do so under the guise of “Olympic spirit”, national pride, and athleticism. You’ll make grand statements about how the Olympics will bring jobs, economic stimulation and fund youth sports programs. But what you won’t talk about are the tens of thousands of people who have been dispossessed of their homes and communities in Tokyo, Rio, and Sochi as a result of the Olympics. Or how many billions of public dollars have been diverted from the city coffers of Montreal, Barcelona, and Athens to pay for the cost overruns.
You won’t talk about the billions of dollars that will pour into the IOC, benefitting its grotesquely wealthy and elite members and the billions more that will land in the pockets of its privileged and opportunistic cohorts and business associates. You won’t talk about the trail of devastation that is the alloy of the Olympic gold.
But we will-‐ in solidarity with movements that have and are forming across the globe to oppose and expose the IOC’s modern Olympics scam for what it really is... an opaque, unaccountable, multi-‐national corporate spectacle diverting public resources for private profit by exploiting athletes and nations unfortunate enough to “win” a bid.
While you and our politically ambitious Mayor and City Council may be convinced that the people of Los Angeles support a 2028 Olympics bid, the reality is that we have not been asked. Angelenos don’t know that the Olympics means the federal government will be in charge of securing the city, causing more deportation risk for our immigrant communities. They don’t know that, unlike 1984, you and the organizing committee have NO accountability and are requiring the city to sign an UNLIMITED liability clause which could bankrupt us. They don’t know that more Angelenos will be displaced from their homes and onto the streets to build more hotels, luxury housing, and to accommodate the new “global” clientele that will be looking to cash in on this Olympic-‐sized investment opportunity.
But WE know. And we have 11 years to inform everyone else, including your major corporate sponsors, their customers, and everyone else that allows you to operate this ruse with complete impunity. That is exactly what we plan to do.
Your announcement isn’t the end of our work...it’s only the beginning. So, you can proceed with awarding the bid, but prepare yourself for the barrage of ever-‐ mounting criticism, protests and further damage to the Olympics brand you will face from a growing opposition movement in Los Angeles, and around the world.
Cc: Mayor Garcetti, City of Los Angeles