Gwen Berry made herself a household name this past week after the Hammer thrower said the playing of the national anthem while she was on the podium at the US Olympic track and field trials was “set up.”
Berry turned away from the flag to face the stands while “The Star-Spangled Banner” played during the medal ceremony on Saturday. She then draped a T-shirt bearing the words “activist athlete” over her head.
Republican Rep. Dan Crenshaw of Texas is now calling for her to be “removed from the team.”
“We don’t need any more activist athletes,” Crenshaw said. “You know, she should be removed from the team. The entire point of the Olympic team is to represent the United States of America. That’s the entire point, OK.”
“So it’s one thing when these NBA players do it — OK, fine, we’ll just stop watching — but now the Olympic team?” he continued. “And it’s multiple cases of this. They should be removed. That should be the bare minimum requirement.”
Berry said she was not expecting the anthem to be played during the ceremony at the winner’s podium.
“I feel like it was set up,” she said after the meet. “I feel like they did that on purpose, and I was pissed, to be honest.”
Crenshaw attributed Berry’s protest to the academic and legal framework of critical race theory.
“Taking it a couple levels deeper, this is the pathology that occurs when we’re teaching critical race theory in our institutions … It results in these displays of hatred towards our own country, and it’s gotta stop,” Crenshaw said.
Berry said her role as an athlete is secondary to fighting racism.
“I don’t need to do anything sport-wise,” she said. “What I need to do is speak for my community, to represent my community, and to help my community. Because that’s more important than sports.”WANT MORE FROM TOTALPROSPORTS? FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE NEWS.