Last month, Japanese officials have included skateboarding on a list of recommended additions to the 2020 Tokyo Olympics. While a number of celebrity skaters – such as Tony Hawk and Shaun White – have campaigned diligently for the inclusion of the sport in the quadrennial competition, it seems that the core of the grassroots have a different view on the matter.
There's an online petition asking the IOC not to include skateboarding to the Olympics, and the signature campaign has already completed more than half of its goal. The petition says:
"With due respect for Olympic Athletes, we the undersigned skateboarders and advocates strongly request that the IOC NOT RECOGNIZE SKATEBOARDING AS AN OLYMPIC SPORT, or use skateboarding to market the Olympics. Further, we ask that the IOC NOT recognize any individuals or groups claiming to be the IOC recognized governing body of skateboarding or provide funding to them.Skateboarding is one of five new sports set to make their Olympic debut in 2020, alongside baseball, karate, climbing and surfing.
Skateboarding is not a "sport" and we do not want skateboarding exploited and transformed to fit into the Olympic program. We feel that Olympic involvement will change the face of skateboarding and its individuality and freedoms forever. We feel it would not in any way support skateboarders or skateparks. We do not wish to be part of it and will not support the Olympics if skateboarding is added as an Olympic sport."