The Olympic Games offer us a tremendous opportunity to demonstrate our American pride. There is, in fact, nothing better than cheering on Team USA through figure skating competitions and other Olympic events. When an American captures a gold medal, and we hear the strains of our national anthem, it can be a truly electrifying moment. Wouldn't you think our Olympic team would also want to lend support to American-based businesses?
The Olympic Games offer us a tremendous opportunity to demonstrate our American pride. There is, in fact, nothing better than cheering on Team USA through figure skating competitions and other Olympic events. When an American captures a gold medal, and we hear the strains of our national anthem, it can be a truly electrifying moment.
So, you would think that our Olympic team would also want to lend support to American-based businesses. As I was watching the opening Olympic ceremony, I noticed that our athletes had the name “ROOTS” on their clothing. It seemed like an apt name, considering the fact that we are a nation of immigrants and our roots might extend around the globe. However, when I surfed the Internet, looking for information about ROOTS, I was disheartened to learn that it is based in Toronto, Canada. Therefore, when Team USA displays their colors, they’re displaying Canadian threads.
In fact, ROOTS is the official outfitter for the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Teams, according to the company’s website at www.roots.com. ROOTS has also signed U.S. Olympic Speed Skating Gold Medalist Apolo Ohno to be featured in the company’s ads.
Why is the U.S. Olympic team engaging in anti-American practices? With all the clothing companies in the U.S., you mean there isn’t one that’s fit to dress our Olympic team? Is it possible that we can lead the world in Olympic medals—yet lag behind other nations in our economic competitiveness?
I believe that many Americans like me are tired of U.S. manufacturers being overlooked. We routinely buy foreign imports…regulate and tax our businesses to death…then wonder why we’re losing jobs. It’s common sense -- if you award a Canadian company a contract to make clothing for U.S. athletes, that means fewer jobs for American workers.
I think that we need to stop waving the white flag of surrender—and begin hoisting the stars and stripes instead. It’s time for Congress and state legislatures around the country to pass legislation mandating that all uniforms worn by soldiers, officers, and Olympic athletes be manufactured in the U.S. If we, as taxpayers, are already paying the clothing bills, at least the money we spend can go to American companies where U.S. citizens will do the work.
This is not isolationistic. It’s a pro-America policy. We need to do all we can to build our job base in America—and that includes shoring up our sagging manufacturing base. All it will really take to make America strong and competitive again is the determination and political will to do it.
But what about those who say that we live in a global economy…that we should be eager to do business with companies in other countries? Certainly, it’s a legitimate question. However, I’m not saying we shouldn’t be selling our goods to overseas companies. What I’m saying is that we shouldn’t go outside our borders to buy goods, when there are plenty of goods to be had right here, in the good old USA.
It’s unfortunate that our political leaders have been lax in addressing this issue. But there’s nothing to prevent ordinary citizens from lobbying their lawmakers to take action. We need to care about this situation. We need to put America first, for the sake of our children and grandchildren. While it is wonderful to win an Olympic competition, it means little if we declare defeat on the economic front. Let’s make sure that America is in our hearts -- and that the “made in the USA” label is on our backs -- and the backs of our athletes.
Nathan Tabor is founder of the web site, The Conservative Voice for which he writes a weekly column. Nathan regularly appears on radio and is writing a book for Thomas Nelson Publishing. Nathan received his BA in psychology from St. Andrews Presbyterian College and his MA in public policy from Regent University.
In 2004, Nathan ran for Congress (NC5) in an eight way primary. He raised over $850,000 and received over 7,500 votes in the most expensive primary in American history. Nathan's supporters included Dick Armey, Ed Meese, Steve Moore, Art Laffer, Pat Robertson, Bob Jones III, Congressman Robert Aderholt, Congressman Trent Franks, Congressman Jim Ryun, Beverly and Tim LaHaye, Mike Farris and many others. Dr. Jerry Falwell dubbed him the "young Jesse Helms."