Tell Simone Biles: "I've got your back."
This week during the Olympic games in Tokyo, Simone Biles courageously chose to prioritize her mental and physical health over a gymnastics competition.
She's facing attacks from right wing media, calling her weak, unpatriotic, and selfish.And we need to have her back, because for too long, we've expected athletes - especially Black women - to sacrifice themselves for our entertainment, for their sponsors’ profits, for their teams, for their organizations, and countries. By stepping aside, Simone sent girls and young people everywhere a message - it's ok to prioritize your own needs - you don't have to constantly sacrifice yourself and your well-being for others.
Simone herself said that one of the reasons she chose to compete in these Olympics rather than to retire was to keep a spotlight on an issue bigger than her sport. As the only survivor of Larry Nassar's abuse left on the team, she felt that without her presence, USA Gymnastics would sweep the issue aside(cite). She knows so many changes still need to be made and felt like she needed to use her platform to ensure progress happens.
That is a ton of pressure for anyone, and it shouldn't be just on Simone’s shoulders to ensure that not only USA Gymnastics, but all sports, implement proper protocols so that athletes are actually protected, supported and never face such physical, mental, and emotional abuse.
Let Simone know you have her back and that you’ll continue to demand justice for survivors.
As a community, UltraViolet members have stood by survivors who've shared their stories in the past, and we are in solidarity with Simone Biles today.
Show your support by leaving a comment on this card, and we'll make sure she gets each and every message.