Ryan Lochte created headlines this past week, and it's not the type of publicity a gold medal Olympian would like to receive. Lochte claimed that he was robbed at gun point with his fellow teammates late at night in Rio. Brazilian Tourist Police were first to investigate the "robbery" situation, however; it was reported immediately that the incident was false. The media was confused as to which side was true or false. Lochte first confirmed his side of the story on "The Today Show" right before he left Rio, while the USOC (United States Olympic Committee) didn't confirm the armed robbery. While Lochte was already back in the US, his teammates were detained from their flight back home due to the investigation. Until one of the teammates confessed that Lochte's story was fabricated.
Many asked why Brazil is making a big deal about a lie involving Lochte? Brazilian police were on Lochte's case due to the reputation they want Brazil to portray; a safe environment with officials in touristic areas. Brazil didn't want the public to feel unsafe, while authorities say they are nearby the athletes and tourists. Brazilian officials didn't receive any crime report on the alleged armed robbery Lochte was involved in. A few days later Brazilian officials released a video from the location where the alleged robbery occurred, confirming Lochte's fabricated story was indeed not true. The video shows Lochte and his teammates coming back from a club, vandalizing a gas station bathroom and officials asking them to pay for damages. Ryan Lochte is known for his outrageous personality, however; he didn't think wisely when he reported his lie on national news.
The upsetting conclusion of this international mess was that Lochte's story was taking the spotlight away from athletes competing in Rio at the time. This was the moment to celebrate and focus fully on the athletes and focus on the Rio closing ceremony, except there was more attention over this incident. Lochte and his teammates even made Team USA and America look bad with their fabricated story. USOC apologized to the organizers of the Rio Olympics. Lochte apologized a few days later publicly with an Instagram post and and an interview with Matt Lauer claiming he "over exaggerated" the first time when he said the story to him on "The Today Show." Lochte said in his apology interview, "If I never did that, we wouldn’t be in this mess. None of this would have happened. It was my immature behavior."
On Monday, four major company sponsors dropped Lochte due to his behavior. The USOC confirmed that the Rio scandal isn't over for the four U.S swimmers, they will suffer consequences. The moral lesson that we can all learn from Lochte's international mess is that lying isn't a wise action. It's always better to tell the truth, no matter what. Someone can always catch up on a lie and consequences may occur. It's like that old but true saying - honesty is the best policy.