Embed America: Ask Cedar Rapids
July 23rd, 2012
03:04 PM ET

Embed America: Ask Cedar Rapids

By Lisa Desjardins, CNN

Editorial Note: This interview indicates the effect of negative ads in this campaign. Our subject, Joshua Martin, refers to ads and questions whether Mitt Romney has been honest about when he left his company, Bain Capital. Romney insists he stopped running the company in 1999 and that Bain mistakenly listed his name on some SEC documents after that time. Additionally, Romney says that he did not send American jobs oversea, while the Obama campaign has launched ads asserting that he did.

Cedar Rapids, Iowa (CNN) – The road leading to Cedar Rapids is open, lined with farmland and quiet. But the city where most of Iowa's corn is processed, has a buzz about it.

Embed America found waiter Joshua Martin chatting with friends outside a bar in the downtown section that has bounced back with vitality after the 2008 flood.

Sitting in the last sunlight of the day, Martin told us he is voting for President Obama again. One reason: recent ads from the Obama campaign that cast Mitt Romney as a man who outsourced American jobs while he worked at Bain Capital. Romney vigorously denies that and has asked the Obama campaign to apologize for the ads.

The ads affected Martin, who believes them:

[:44] "I feel that if Mitt Romney was really for our country, he'd be creating jobs and not giving jobs to overseas." FULL POST

Embed America: In Aurora, politicians' words ring hollow to some
iReporter Jesse Fraunfelder, at his home in Aurora, Colorado. While seeking full-time employment he blogs about partisanship in American politics.
July 23rd, 2012
12:25 PM ET

Embed America: In Aurora, politicians' words ring hollow to some

By Lisa Desjardins, CNN

Aurora, Colorado (CNN) – The statements by President Obama and Mitt Romney calling for unity the day after the movie theater shooting in Aurora, Colorado, instead left a bitter aftertaste of politics and partisanship with some in the injured town.

[:57] “I’m outraged that they’re trying to make it political, like a political statement,” said Emma Goos, a 19-year-old who sat three rows from where the gunman entered the movie theater in Aurora.

Goos questioned the politicians' sincerity, saying she believes their primary motivation is to score points over one another in swing state Colorado. To her, the statements were hard to swallow amidst a partisan war that has dominated the airwaves in many states.

Goos and the five people sitting with her at the theatre survived. But one day after the shooting, they were still searching for another friend who was elsewhere in the theater.

[1:03] “It’s certainly something that could be addressed (by the candidates) but now is not the time for that,” Goos said, bruises from the mayhem visible on her arms.

You can check out all of our Embed America coverage here. And track the team's progress on our Embed America map.

OPINION: What changed the Olympics forever
Jim Thorpe was stripped of his gold medals, won in the 1912 Olympics, because he had once been in semi-pro baseball.
July 23rd, 2012
10:56 AM ET

OPINION: What changed the Olympics forever

(CNN) – With the world gearing up for the 2012 London Olympics, CNN Contributor Bob Greene says the decision to let professional athletes compete revolutionized the event.

[0:49] "In the late 1980s the IOC moved toward making the most momentous decision in it's history: It would allow professional athletes in the Olympics. And the fans, far from being outraged at the change, yawned. It was considered no big deal. If the best athletes were paid for their skills? Why not?"

[1:44] "When the Dream Team of U.S. National Basketball Association players went to the 1992 Olympics in Barcelona, they knew they were going to win - and they did, by an average of almost 44 points a game. The problem with professional Dream Teams is that they're overdogs, not underdogs."

Read more of Bob Greene's columns at CNN Opinion.

Should "Tug of War" return to the Olympics?
Tug of War was an Olympic sport until 1920.
July 23rd, 2012
09:39 AM ET

Should "Tug of War" return to the Olympics?

By Matt Cherry, CNN

(CNN) – British policemen once dominated "Tug of War" and won Olympic gold in the 1908 London games.  But don't expect a repeat  during this year's London games which begin on Friday.   The rope sport was part of five Olympics until it was cut in 1920 in an effort to reduce the number of team sports.

[:34] “Dedication and mental toughness, knowing that you just have to hang on that bit longer in order to beat somebody else, it’s not a sport for everybody,” says Glenn Johnson who heads the "Tug of War" International Federation.

Other obscure sports once had Olympic glory including an activity that includes a horse pulling a skier who jumps over ramps at high speeds. It’s called Ski Joring.

[1:57] “There is nothing like it, the acceleration, you get out of the start, the speed that you’re going and just the grace and beauty of the horses," says Geoffrey Smith with the North American Ski Joring Association.

Ski Joring made its one and only appearance in the 1928 Olympics in St. Moritz, Switzerland.

The 1904 Olympics in St. Louis featured an event with only four competitors and all of them from the United States: it’s called Rogue:

[2:26] “It’s a derivation of croquet in that it is played on a hard surface,” says Chris Bullock for Stuart, Florida, who built a Rogue course in his backyard.