Eugene Cho

angel kicks judge in taekwondo match

You have a caption for this picture?

Cuba’s Angel Matos kicks the referee in the face after a controversy in the bronze medal match at the Beijing Olympics.  I actually remember Matos from the 2000 Olympics in Sydney.  He won the gold medal at those games and dedicated the medal to his mother who past away on the day of the Opening Ceremony. 

I have a feeling this is going to be one of those things he will regret for the rest of his life.  I’ve never done anything so extreme but I began to think about the list of things I’ve done in my life – particularly WORDS – that I regretted saying or doing in the heat of the moment.

Don’t pretend you’re an angel.  You know you’ve done some stuff you regret.

From ESPN:

Cuba’s Angel Matos deliberately kicked a referee square in the face after he was disqualified in a bronze-medal match, prompting the World Taekwondo Federation to recommend that he be banned for life.

“We didn’t expect anything like what you have witnessed to occur,” said WTF secretary general Yang Jin-suk. “I am at a loss for words.”

Yang also recommended Matos’ coach be banned.

Matos was winning 3-2, with 1:02 left in the second round, when he fell to the mat after being hit by his opponent, Kazakhstan’s Arman Chilmanov. Matos was sitting there, awaiting medical attention, when he was disqualified for taking too much injury time. Fighters get one minute, and Matos was disqualified when his time ran out.

Matos angrily questioned the call, pushed a judge, then pushed and kicked referee Chakir Chelbat of Sweden, who required stitches in his lip. Matos spat on the floor and was escorted out.

“This is an insult to the Olympic vision, an insult to the spirit of taekwondo and, in my opinion, an insult to mankind,” Yang said.

Matos’ coach was unapologetic.

“He was too strict,” Leudis Gonzalez said, referring to the decision to disqualify Matos. Afterward, he charged the match was fixed, accusing the Kazakhs of offering him money.

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9 Responses

  1. Cheryl says:

    I have a daughter who is learning this sport….at age four she will tell you, that honor is the gift you give your self…..what makes up honor is drilled into them from day one… As a blackbelt where was his controll, better yet….where was his honor….She hates that he is “TaeKwonDo”……Ask him and his “coach”, what am I now to say to my daughter who wants to know “why?”…How do I make it right for her?….I watched as she looked down on the floor and said, mommy it is so sad….I thought she was feeling sorry for the ref…..No….she says he lost all honor in front of not just his mommy and daddy, but the world…..she feels sorry for him, she says a boy with no honor is nothing…..what can one say to that…..On a more better note…..she is a BIG FAN of Maria de Roserio Espinoza, and wants to know where she can get an photo with her signature on it…..she said she wants to be Maria when she grows up….that is left to be seen.

  2. Benji says:

    There’s only one word that describes what he did: Despicable.

  3. TIMMY says:

    DID ANYONE SMELL THAT… YOU THINK THE REF SHAT HIMSELF IMMETATELY BEFORE OR AFTER THAT CHUCK NORRIS STYLE ROUNDHOUSE KICK TO THE FACE? .. IF THE REF WASNT AUTISTIC HE IS NOW

  4. miles says:

    Thank God he’s not Puerto Rican. (Phew..)

  5. j says:

    where is Jet Li/Jackie Chan……need to teach this freak a lesson or two about what Martial Arts stands for….all stands for HONOR, INTEGRITY, RESPECT……i support the life time ban on this guy….he should never be allowed to compete in both domestically and internationally…..

  6. Yonas says:

    Caption:

    “Smell My Toe!”

  7. hatori29 says:

    Now, that’s one angry man…

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In our culture, we can be so obsessed with the "spectacular" or "glamorous." The Church often engagws in thia language and paradigm...but what if God has called many of us to small, ordinary things?

Will we still be faithful?
Will we still go about such things with great love and joy?

I recently came across this picture taken by @mattylew, one of our church staff...and I started tearing up: This is my mother; in her 70s; with realities of some disabilities that make it difficult for her to stand up and sit down...but here she is on her knees and prostate in prayer. She doesn't have any social media accounts, barely knows how to use her smartphone, doesn't have a platform, hasn't written a book, doesn't have any titles in our church, isn't listed as a leader or an expert or a consultant or a guru. But she simply seeks to do her best - by God's grace - to be faithful to God. She prays for hours every day inteceding for our family, our church, and the larger world.

Even if we're not noticed or celebrated or elevated...let's be faithful. Our greatest calling as followers of Christ is to be faithful. Not spectacular. Not glamorous. Not popular. Not relevant. And not even successful in the eyes of the world.

Be faithful. Amen. #notetoself (and maybe helpful for someone else)

At times, we have to say ‘NO’ to good things to say ‘YES’ to the most important things.

We can't do it all.
Pray and choose wisely.
Then invest deeply. May our compassion not just be limited to the West or to those that look like us. Lifting up the people of Iraq, Iran, and Kurdistan in prayer after the 7.3 earthquake - including the many new friends I met on a recent trip to Iraq.

The death toll rises to over 400 and over 7,000 injured in multiple cities and hundreds of villages along the Western border with Iraq.

Lord, in your mercy... We are reminded again and again...that we are Resurrection People living in a Dark Friday world.

It's been a tough, emotional, and painful week - especially as we lament the horrible tragedy of the church shootings at Sutherland Springs. In the midst of this lament, I've been carried by the hope, beauty, and promise of our baptisms last Sunday and the raw and honest testimonies of God's mercy, love, and grace.

Indeed, God is not yet done. May we take heart for Christ has overcome the world. "Without genuine relationships with the poor, we rob them of their dignity and they become mere projects. And God did not intend for anyone to become our projects." Grateful this quote from my book, Overrated, is resonating with so many folks - individuals and  NGOs. / design by @preemptivelove .
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on ourselves 
even as we seek 
to change the world. 
To be about the latter 
without the former 
is the great temptation 
of our times.

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