During the photo op at her medals ceremony Sunday night, Raven Saunders had a message she wanted to get out and she did in grand fashion by lifting her arms above her head and formed an “X’ with her wrists. Asked what that meant, she explained: ”It’s the intersection of where all people who are oppressed meet.”
The self-proclaimed “Hulk” of track-and-field said she hoped to honor “people all around the world who are fighting and don’t have the platform to speak up for themselves.”
Saunders, a three-time college champion during her time at Ole Miss, protested on the podium, which is in violation of the the International Olympic Committee’s “Rule 50” prohibition on medal ceremony protests.
“I really think that my generation really don’t care,” Saunders said. “We understand that there’s so many people that are looking up to us, that are looking to see if we say something or if we speak up for them.”
After her final throw, Saunders hit the media again by celebrating with a twerk. Cameras immediately shifted to Lijiao Gong of China, but fans got to see enough to enjoy the moment on social media.
Saunders told the AP after her silver medal showing that her mission is “to be me. To not apologize.”
“To show younger people that no matter how many boxes they try to fit you in, you can be you and you can accept it” she said.
“People tried to tell me not to do tattoos and piercings and all that. But look at me now, and I’m poppin’.”
Saunders is one of around 180 out LGBTQ athletes competing at the Tokyo Olympics. She said she came out to her mom in third grade. She was outed to classmates in sixth grade, and in ninth grade, she finally started becoming comfortable with who she was. By the time college started, she was comfortable with who she was.WANT MORE FROM TOTALPROSPORTS? FOLLOW US ON GOOGLE NEWS.