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Olympic Sponsors Responsible for Human Rights Violations?

Pro-Tibet groups are joining together to call out the corporate sponsors of the Beijing Olympics. The groups say that unless the companies use their influence to pressure China, they are complicit in a humanitarian disaster.

Twelve global sponsors, including Coca Cola, General Electric, McDonald's, Visa, Johnson & Johnson and Omega have paid a combined $80 million for the four year exclusive sponsorship deal. Activists explain that together these companies have a GDP equal to Canada's, the world's eighth largest economy. Thus, they can wield a lot of influence.

Do you expect sponsors to get involved in global politics, considering they work with governments, employ lobbying firms, and maintain international presences?

Are human rights more than politics, therefore giving everyone an obligation to pressure China, including corporations and consumers? Or, should the sponsors be commended for supporting the Olympic movement, which would be impossible without them?


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