2022 Winter Olympics Host City Makes History, But Raises Eyebrows

At the end of the day, does it all boil down to money? What other explanation is there for a Winter Olympics in a city with little winter snow?

The International Olympic Committee has announced Beijing as the host city of the 2022 Winter Olympics. The Chinese capital will be the first city ever to host both the Winter and Summer Olympics.

The decision has stirred a lot of controversy and taken social media by storm as people are scrutinizing whether of having China host the Olympics despite its poor human rights track record is a good decision.

Read: Putin's Jinx? No One Wants To Host The Winter Olympics Anymore

John J. MacAloon, a University of Chicago anthropologist and historian, has previously stated: “There is no hope that China would make any more progress on human rights than it did with the 2008 games, and in fact things have declined radically since then under [President] Xi Jinping.”

Rival Kazakhstan host city “Almaty has serious human rights issues but they have so much less to do than China to cross the line and come up to be ‘internationally normal,’” he added.

Heads turned and eyebrows raised when China put down its bid in 2013 as contender for the 2022 winter Olympics, but its improving economic and geopolitical conditions gave the country an edge over competitors, and led it to victory.

Besides human rights abuses, concerts loom over the host city’s climate, which isn't known for abundant snow. Plans call for snow-based events at venues 100 miles from the city center. Officials have also confirmed the Olympics will rely on manmade snow.

Margaret M. Gold, British co-editor of Olympic Cities: City Agendas, Planning and the World’s Games, 1986-2016, has stated that Beijing was the “safe bet.” She pointed out it's a wealthier city with a track record of hosting the games, making it hard for the IOC to reject the bid.

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Regardless of China’s stance on human rights and other similar issues, the fact of the matter is that it all boils down to the power of money.