Quote Originally Posted by tulosai View Post
While I am a bit split between the camps on this point I also think it is worthwhile to spend some time thinking about the differences (which are obvious) between Julia (or typical Russian skater) and Alyssa (or typical American skater) SOLELY based on their country of birth.

1) I guarantee you, when Julia went down she was rushed to a doctor. Julia did not need to think about if she was going to the doctor or how she was going to pay for the doctor. Russia (or their figure skating federation) paid for the doctor, and Russia made her go to the doctor. Russia (or their figure skating federation) was immediately told of her injury. Contrast this to America, where our skaters have to decide on their own if their injury is serious enough to merit going to the doctor and paying the costs out of pocket.

2) The nature of Julia's injury was that it was obvious and apparent. I doubt she was questioning whether she was really injured and how or anything like that the way Alyssa seemed to have been for a time. She went down, she cut herself, and her head hurt. This is much different than a more subtle, consistently worsening injury whose origins you can't pinpoint.

3) The Russian Figure Skating Association is 100000 times more involved than USFSA. USFSA doesn't even know what is going on with its skaters probably 90% of the time. They don't really monitor them. It is for the skater to make the call. This closely relates to point 1 in a way, but Julia had close to 0% input in making the call. The Russian FSA told her she was withdrawing. When is the last time USFSA told someone they were withdrawing? Partly this is a problem in how often injuries are reported but that is a result of the very different systems.

Hope you don't feel I was picking at you, tulosai.

Namely, I was just expressing my weariness of these moral standing arguments. You actually make some really good points, regarding the underlying circumstances that have lead to one skater's decision versus another. I think this is more relevant to the discussion than whether skater X or Y was right or wrong in withdrawing or not withdrawing.