Coronavirus threat rises as Japan cheers Olympic gold medal rush

By Junko Horiuchi and Ayano Shimizu

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Although the positivity rate among Olympic-related people has been very low, concerns remain about security breakdowns in the "bubble" system aimed at keeping them separated from the general public.

I am surprised Olympic affiliated athletes/staff were allowed to take the same commercial flights to Japan as regular citizens and residents here (or vice versa).

I am not happy about someone on my flight testing positive upon entering Japan.

-5 ( +4 / -9 )

Coronavirus threat rises

Does it really? Isn´t the virus pretty much the same as before? And Corona deaths in Tokyo for the last few weeks remain between zero and one per day. So what is rising??

-7 ( +5 / -12 )

I don't fully understand the bubble system for Olympic-related people. The only people who have been completely bubbled are athletes and their immediate support staff, but the people who work with those support staff and volunteers are free to go about their normal lives. As a volunteer who is working at Olympic venues, there is no contact between me and athletes (who are treated as if they are celebs that can't mingle with common folk), but there is direct contact between me and middle men (such as press or the ball boys). In most cases the quarantine for non-athletes was only three days.

And also, the best option would have been to delay the Olympics for another year or just cancel it outright. It is silly to throw away everything just so a handful of elite athletes can have a party. And it is impossible to argue that common people have to self-restrain whilst the IOC is having a rave.

10 ( +12 / -2 )

The headline says it all.. The problem is the cheering. If people hadn’t cheered and instead just watched on their TVs at home, wherever, in silence, with no cheering, as proclaimed in the Olympic Playbook ( the Bible of COVID safety) then the virus would not have spread and this increase would not have happened. Clearly not the government’s fault nor the IOC, it is the people in their homes disobeying the playbook.

-2 ( +6 / -8 )

I was always curious as to what the Japanese equivalent of "bread and circuses" would be. I originally thought that one of those stupid TV shows with the entirely-inappropriately named "talentos" eating something and then screaming about it combined both the "bread" and the "circus".

But now I'm thinking we might also have a new version: "platitudes and medals".

6 ( +8 / -2 )

When I come out of the surf down near the Olympic sailing pavilion and see all the people site seeing without masks and blatantly wearing the hologram reflecting passes it makes me sick. I offer masks but they refuse. From a distance I ask if they are vaccinated. No

2 ( +5 / -3 )

As always: who listens to the experts!

*"There is no doubt that canceling the Olympics is the most effective way in bringing down the number of infections, including its psychological impact," said Kazuhiro Tateda, an infectious disease expert ...."*

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Japan winning gold this year lifts us all up! Stay home and enjoy glory of gold metals and Tokyo 2020.

I enjoy Asahi again with games and no risk.

The games helps us through Pandemic and must finish under any conditions. We make this small sacrafice for this great performance

-5 ( +3 / -8 )

By taking basic measures like wearing masks, I think it's possible to prevent infections, so I think the Olympics will be OK."

Well, the 3000 plus daily positive cases indicate that you,re wrong.

The games helps us through Pandemic and must finish under any conditions.

Not sure how surging cases and record positive corona numbers both outside and inside the ineffective bubble are helping us through the pandemic....can you enlighten us?

7 ( +7 / -0 )

Mr. Marcelito. The Olympics and gold lift our spirits and make us strong. Mr. Bach and IOC bravely came to Japan. It gives us courage and appreciation for his sacrifices.

We can stay home to watch games.

We must thank to Prime Minister Suga, Governor Koike, Mr. Bach for the leadership and skills.

The Olympics will be remembered in history!

-9 ( +0 / -9 )

Covid19 also has been getting a new gold medal almost everyday setting up new record, and, unlike athletes gold medal, we will probably remember and feel them after Olympics are finished.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

The public has been excited by the strong performances of Japanese athletes, who have already racked up more gold medals than the 12 earned at the previous Olympics in Rio de Janeiro in 2016.

Wonderful, but now that the track and field has started, there won't be many more gold medals. Let's be honest. The Japanese track team won't qualify for many events, and if you don't qualify, there is no chance for a medal.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Now they have won 17 gold medals, the most in Japanese history of Olympics. Congratulation, Japan!

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

The threat of covid has stayed pretty much the same actually. Unfortunately the relentless daily case count doesn't have the same effect as last year.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Like the Roman Empire .. Give Circus and Bread to the mob ... mostly simplistic stupid people easy to manage in the way the Government wants, the Pandemic is out of control not because of the virus but because the host porting the virus are free to move everywhere without penalty or strict Law restrictions! Shibuya, Shinjuku and other major cities.

3 ( +4 / -1 )


The threat of covid has stayed pretty much the same actually. Unfortunately the relentless daily case count doesn't have the same effect as last year.

Case numbers are up recently but people are not getting sick as much and the number of deaths are drastically down. The current death rate by Covid-19 (July 2021) is as low as normal influenza with 0.96 person per day on average in the city of 14 million population. Smoking (lung cancer) is killing 20 times more than Covid-19 with 18.5 persons per day.

Since the virus has become significantly less harmful, it is natural for the people not to feel afraid too much.

-2 ( +2 / -4 )

“Give them bread and circuses and they will never revolt.” —  satirical poet Juvenal. 

Credit Beto.....

There has to be an after effect.

The Covid variants, will or could ultimately become the deciding factor for podium Gold medal Pandemic Coronavirus disseminator.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

With increased vaccinations the threat actually decreases. People get ill but not so severely. Despite much huger case numbers deaths remain in single figures.

-4 ( +1 / -5 )

What I find irritating is the number of people -- presumably currently unoccupied athletes and staff -- in the stands at the events, yelling and cheering and celebrating.

No, it may not be a huge health risk. But it sends all the wrong signals about how seriously they claim they are taking the measures at the Olympics. It sends the strange, discording message of "once you're in, let loose, you can do what you want."

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Paul GJuly 30  06:57 pm JST

Japan winning gold this year lifts us all up! Stay home and enjoy glory of gold metals and Tokyo 2020.

Japan winning medals could at best be a Pyrrich victory. Same for anybody for that matter. All those medals ain't going to do anybody any good if they get sick and/or die.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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