Coubertin Quote for Dec, 07
In those days, nothing could be more difficult than trying to persuade a number of spectators to attend a sports event. Such meetings roused little interest …

My o’ my, how times have changed.  Today, it is nearly impossible for us to understand the low regard in which sport was held in France in the late 19th century.  When Baron Pierre de Coubertin launched his campaign to introduce sport in the French education system, he faced entrenched opposition along with a great deal of public apathy.  The Baron, of course, foresaw the future of sport and helped it find its footing in the modern world on the platform of the Olympic Games.  Even so, he would more than likely be astonished at the reach and influence of sport in our world today.  This quote is from “The Second Olympiad: Paris 1900,” a chapter in Coubertin’s Olympic Memoirs.

“Try to visualize the state of affairs thirty years ago (in 1870). In those days, nothing could be more difficult than trying to persuade a number of spectators to attend a sports event. Such meetings roused little interest ... Sport, according to a university professor, was a mere ‘recreation’ and should not be expected to be anything else. Public opinion was still in the same rut.”