Not many people knew who Gwen Berry was before her Anthem protest, but they are sure after her now in a huge way.
Hammer thrower Gwen Berry finds herself back in the spotlight this week, but this time it’s for some problematic tweets that were uncovered. The 32-year-old’s tweets likely came from when she was in her early 20s.
In the below screenshots, Berry Could be seen tweeting about sexual assault, making threats to stomp a child, offered commentary on White people and made generalizations about Chinese people.
After turning her back to the American flag while the national anthem played, she proceeded to drape a shirt that read “Activist Athlete” over her face.
On the playing of the anthem, Berry said she felt like she was set up. She claimed she was told that the anthem would be played before she took the podium.
“They had enough opportunities to play the national anthem before we got up there,” Berry said, according to The New York Post. “I was thinking about what I should do. Eventually I stayed there and I swayed, I put my shirt over my head. It was real disrespectful.”
“They said they were going to play it before we walked out, then they played it when we were out there,” she continued. “… But I don’t really want to talk about the anthem because that’s not important. The anthem doesn’t speak for me. It never has.”
“My purpose and my mission is bigger than sports,” she added. “I’m here to represent those … who died due to systemic racism. That’s the important part. That’s why I’m going. That’s why I’m here today.”
As far as protesting during the Olympics, Berry said she’s still considering it.
“We’ll see. You know, it just depends. It depends,” she told CNN’s Don Lemon. “You know everything is a spur of the moment. It depends on how I’m feeling and depends on what I want to do in that moment and what I want to do for my people in that moment. And I will do whatever comes upon me and whatever is in my heart.”