Letter to the Editor, by Carl Luft

Dear Citizens of Rio:

Hello. My name is Carl. I live in South Dakota, USA. I want to apologize for our swimmers that vandalized your community on behalf of the USA. Please forgive us.

We have enjoyed watching your community and the Olympics so very much. The Olympics have been OUTSTANDING. I hope I can see Rio someday.

Your community and all the work you have done on the Olympics have been just amazing. Thank you for putting on some of the best Summer games ever.

You have a very beautiful community. And it has been so exciting watching all the games down there from up here.

Again, please forgive us for our guys doing those things down there. It’s a very small fraction of all the good people of this country.

Blessings to you all.



Carl Luft
Sioux Falls, SD


  1. As an expat living in Brazil I don’t understand why the US media has tried so hard to discredit this wonderful country. I especially fault the Washington Post and New York Times for their “tabloid” journalism. If Americans, especially retirees, knew the real Brazil they would come here in mass.
    One walk on the beach in Northern Brazil and you will never leave.

  2. Right on
    Rio deserves much more positive attention than the media attention to 4 self centered individuals who call themselves Olympians, but certainly do NOT emminate the ideals, values, and mentoring of an Olympian, much less an American.

    Very disappointed in these 4


  3. I have traveled to Rio for over 20 years–sometimes two or three times a year. I vacation there because it is one of the loveliest places on this planet. Sure, Rio has all of the problems of most large cities, and most of these problems have improved dramatically over the years. What has never changed is the beauty and kindness of the people who call themselves Carioca. I just want to ask the wonderful people of the “wonderful city” to forgive these foolish and careless young Americans, who didn’t represent our country very well. Rio deserves American praiser the Olympics; these awful American swimmers deserve to have their medals revoked for tarnishing the reputation of our country and yours.

    An honorary Carioca
    Alden Reimonenq
    Los Angeles

  4. Good letter Carl. Thank you. Maybe Lochte will apologise better.

    Three apologies from scandalous US Olympic Team Swimmers, but only one includes apology to Brazil

  5. Dear Carl,

    Thanks for your letter but no apologies needed. It was a case of individual actions that in no way damage the reputation of the Americans or the US.

    Total lack of street skills from these swimmers. All security at Rio gas stations at night are off duty policemen making some money on the side. They are used to get into and out of messy situation. They probably held them for until the on duty police car arrived. Once they discovered that they were going to be handed over to the police they paid out what was asked for damages and left.

    Here is what street skilled people do. Your bladder is about to burst. You use sign language so the taxi driver knows you want to pee and he stops for you at convenient place and you let it go. If this is the back of the gas station you shout: Emergency!. Show thumb up, pointing to your mouth showing you have drunk a few. Pull a few Reais bills from your wallet. Say Olimpic. 20 Reais is about 7 dollars and “pay for the inconvenience” you caused. The off duty police take selfies with you and you go.

    Note this is being captured on camera and the owner might ask if he sees the tape: “What’s that?” “Oh just a couple of drunk gringoes on their way back to their hotel.”

    They go back and Tweet the incident with selfies at the gas station and they get the publicity they wanted.

    I have been living outside Brazil since 1983, I have my share of confrontation and screw ups in Africa, South East Asia and Middle East.

    Osvaldo Coelho

  6. It is too bad that Ryan Lochte lost his endorsement due to NBC’s biased coverage, especially the segment Al Roker gave on the Today show…what a hysterical, out of control person Al Roker is…
    These boys, showed a lot more control than Al Roker of NBC.
    They were held at gunpoint by a “security guard”/extortionist, who forced them to the ground until they handed over money. There was no vandalism to the bathroom at all. In fact, the bathroom was locked, which would explain why the boys had to relieve themselves outside of the bathroom…only a poster was taken down,
    I’m guessing in frustration.

    If it was my son, who they were holding a gun to, I would have flown down to Brazil and given the authorities a piece of my mind! And I would not need a translator! Because I am Brazilian, and I know how corrupt the officials are there!! Confiscating their passports until they pay 12 thousand dollars, when there is no damage? How greedy is that?

    If you want to look at damage, look at how The Brazilians fowl their own water. Look at the polluted water our swimmers and athletes had to swim and boat in! They don’t even have sewage treatment plants! I’m Brazilian and I’m ashamed and embarrassed by my own country!
    I left for America and will NEVER go back.

    These young athletes were not the only ones held up at gunpoint. Many environmental activists have been shot because they were challenging cattle ranching and the Brazilian government which is destroying our earth’s oxygen supply by cutting down the Amazon.

  7. I am married to a Brazilian my comment on the Lochte controversy is these men were crass idiots but it pales in comparison with the fact they were the subject of extrajudicial justice by a security guard. In any civilized country the security guard would have been arrested for brandishing a firearm at the very least. The gun is used for self defense not for getting money from delinquents. If Lochte and the others had took off ruinning would the security guard have shot them? Does urinating in public warrant the death penalty?
    The tragedy is that Brazilians seem to be fine with this kind of street justice.

  8. thanks for the clarification of what really happened Rajesvari Brinkley.
    very unfortunate for Lochte and friends. It was a great olympics.


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