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Essay The Disabled Athlete “Does” have an Unfair Advantage

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The article, "The Disabled Athlete has an Unfair Advantage," by Amby Burfoot, is a poorly written, research deficient article, in need of accurate, unbiased supporting facts. The article is written about Oscar Pistorius a double below knee amputee that competed but failed to qualify for the Beijing Olympics, after a lengthy court case. (Robinson) This unsatisfactorily written article has merit to the opinion, however, the author sounded as if he was a first time writer for a school newspaper. The facts used in the paper seem as if they were researched by asking someone who knows, someone who knows someone who is an amputee. Writing with this apparent ignorance, and recklessness can only lead to a larger divide between the two sides of the argument. The author Amby Burfoot is an editor-at large, and the winner of the 1968 Boston Marathon; states his argument the same as an elderly person afraid of change. The facts are not supported, ignorant selection of words, and at times out of touch tone is the wrong way to try to argue for what could be considered by some a sensitive subject. The fact that women and men are already placed into separate categories for events, and that there are Paralympics for amputees to compete in, completely passes the author by and he spends the article poorly stating that stumps with springs are cheating because "Pistorius does not need to train harder in order to qualify for the Beijing Olympics, he just needs a better set of equipment."(Burfoot)
All Athletes use equipment of some sort to give them some sort of advantage or to become even with the rest of the field. Mr. Burfoot states that, "Pistorius does not need to train harder in order to qualify for the Beijing Olympics, he just needs a be...


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...on to the track are unfortunate. Being a former Boston Marathon winner Mr. Burfoot must be an expert on running, that being said, having a sister with an amputation and winning a marathon does not make you an expert on amputation running.



Works Cited

Burfoot, Amby. "The Disabled Athlete Has an Unfair Advantage." Footloose: Amby Burfoot's Notes from the Road (24 June 2007). Rpt. in The Olympics. Ed. Tamara L. Roleff. Detroit: Greenhaven Press, 2009. General Onefile. Web.
"Can Prosthetics Give Double-amputee’s Advantage Over Able-bodied Runners?" Newsday [Melville, NY] 15 July 2007. General OneFile. Web.
"Long jump." Encyclopædia Britannica. Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, 2011. Web.
Robinson, Joshua. "Prosthetics Gave Runner Unfair Edge, Report Says." New York Times 19 Nov. 2009: B13(L). Gale Opposing Viewpoints In Context. Web.



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