Who’s afraid of the
Big Bad Wolf FEI, the FEI the FEI,
Who’s afraid of the FEI, the FEI, yes I!
It’s a bit ridiculous when you think about it. Journalists should not be afraid of the international organizations that administer the sport the journalists cover. Transparency and openness on the part of the federation, coupled with journalism’s mandate to pursue the truth, should be enough of a safeguard for a barking dog (or muckraker if you prefer – I consider it a term of endearment) like me. But I admit it. I am a tiny bit afraid. Yes, the same person who blogged fearlessly last week about the Saudi approach to women’s rights is looking over her shoulder. What if they decide I’m poking my nose where it doesn’t belong and yank my Olympic credentials? I don’t even know if they can do that, but I don’t really want to find out. Of course, if they WERE to take away my accreditation I guess I’d have material for this blog for the rest of my days.
So without making any further surmisals (spell checker doesn’t like it, but ‘surmisals’ sounds like a word to me) that might attract a big deep voice booming at me out of cyberspace, and without betraying some very trusting sources, I will say only this in regard to the FEI vs. IDRC situation: I’m still on the IDRC’s side. In all the legal wrangling that now dominates the ‘conversation’, one bit of factual material has been entirely ignored by the FEI. The two individuals that the IDRC dared remove from their membership were not even members until AFTER they were nominated by their NFs and learned that IDRC membership is mandatory for the FEI DC rider rep. I’m also still finding it hard to buy the idea that the NFs, as a majority, asked to have the IDRC kicked out. But that’s what the FEI said, and they certainly said it in no uncertain terms. One more thing: I’m still not able to believe every single horse person on this planet doesn’t love Kyra unconditionally, like my dog loves me. Not that Kyra would expect to get away with anything, not at all. That’s what makes Kyra so cool. She is straight, and real and honest. Not to mention one hell of a rider and trainer.
Okay, here is a bit of incontrovertible fact that I can’t possibly get into trouble for sharing. I found it on the FEI’s own site, after all. The rider rep on the FEI Jumping Committee is Otto Becker; Clayton Fredericks is on the FEI Eventing Committee. Both of them are also members of the FEI Athletes Committee, which has only three members. The third is show jumper Kevin Staut. That’s two show jumpers, one eventer and no dressage athlete on the committee. It has been said that the reason the FEI (eventually) gave for rejecting Wayne Channon was that there was already a Brit on the committee and there shouldn’t be two committee members from the same country. Not only is that not in the statutes, but there are two Brits on the FEI Veterinary Committee and two Aussies on the FEI Eventing Committee. Just the facts, folks. Right there in the FEI Directory.
I’m off to Dallas for a little dressage freestylin’ on Friday, and then it’s back to the Wonderful World of Welly to get my finger back on the pulse of that vibrant little hot spot. Expect a Welly update on how it’s all going down at the Global Dressage Festival and still-not-approved Equestrian Village.
I leave you today with a couple of fun videos to support the theme and title of today’s post. Aren’t those Disney pigs obscene little creatures? And the Christian right objected to Teletubbies…