The Ugly American in Rio 2016



Everyone has heard the term “Ugly American” if you have travelled beyond the US.  He is usually the arrogant guy that shows no respect for the foreign culture. Unfortunately, the “Ugly American” showed up in Rio Olympics as US Olympic gold winners.  Yes, these guys was in full straight-jacket “UGLY” at a gas station where they lied about being robbed at gun point. James Feigen, Ryan Lochte, Gunnar Bentz and Jack Conger concoted a story of being robbed  at a gas station after getting out of a cab but at one point the story was they were forced off the road. All lies!  UGLY!  Of course, I’m sure after they realized the “lie” wasn’t working somebody told the truth. What a shame a tarnished Olympic memory for these guys.

I saw the Ugly American in the Bahamas.  We were booked for a day long excursion on another island.  The agency sent a van to pick you up from your villa or hotel and take you to your boat boarding location.  Well, our boarding location was on Paradise Island.  We pick up 4 young white men in their mid to late 20’s.  And, there is always one who is a loud mouth that starts off nice enough.  But, after a few moments the Black 80 year old van driver becomes fair game.  The van is slowly moving up-hill on the bridge to Paradise Island and the insensitive remarks start from the “loud mouth” for a laugh.” Hey, should we get out and push?” lots of laughter from his friends.  The van is full with about 15-20 people made up of families with children, I had 2 children with me, honeymoon couples and folks on vacation.  I was very uncomfortable and was glad when their conversation changed.  My first thought “Ugly American” in the Bahamas.


What the US Olympic winners didn’t realize is that Rio has over 10,000 cameras located throughout the area.  The Daily Beast reports that Rio de Janeiro, the second largest city in one of the world’s fastest-emerging economies, has created a surveillance system that makes Big Brother live up to its name.  And, our Olympians got caught mis-behaving on camera and their lie was exposed.  They should apologize.

The BBC reported online: The people of Rio were unhappy to see the reputation of their city damaged, Mr Veloso said, adding: “We are dealing with important public figures who influence others and should know how to comport themselves… An apology would be welcomed.”


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