Plenty of people were outraged on social media after track star Sha’Carri Richardson was suspended after she tested positive for marijuana last month and is now unable to run in the 100-meter dash at the Tokyo Olympics.
Richardson, the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency said Friday, accepted a one-month suspension after testing positive for THC at the trials. She has since been retroactively disqualified from the trials, and will now not be able to compete in her signature event in the Olympics later this month.
Richardson confirmed on "The Today Show” on Friday that she ingested marijuana days before the trials, shortly after she learned of the death of her biological mother. She also apologized to fans and sponsors.
"I know what I did, I know what I'm supposed to do, what I'm allowed not to do," she said. "And I still made that decision."
White House addresses Richardson’s suspension
White House press secretary Jen Psaki was asked about Richardson’s suspension on Friday.
While she praised Richardson personally, Psaki said that the White House was not involved and will not get involved with USADA’s decisions.
Psaki says U.S. sprinter Sha'Carri Richardson is an "inspiring young woman," but her suspension for marijuana use is an "independent decision" by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency: "We will certainly leave them the space and room to make their decisions" https://t.co/uYBAq4ri9Y pic.twitter.com/gYZgSTgx9N
— CBS News (@CBSNews) July 2, 2021
"This was an independent decision made by the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency, not a decision that would be made by the U.S. government, as is appropriate," Psaki said. "We will certainly leave them the space and room to make their decision about anti-doping policies that need to be implemented.
"I will also note that Sha'Carri Richardson is an inspiring young woman who has gone through a lot personally, and she also happens to be one of the fastest women in the world, and that's an important part of the story as well."
Patrick Mahomes, others slam Richardson’s suspension
Even though marijuana is legal recreationally in 19 states, including the one where Richardson used it before the trials, the World Anti-Doping Agency still considers it a “substance of abuse.”
Naturally, Richardson's suspension didn’t sit well with many on social media after the news broke.
This is so trash man… just let her run! https://t.co/tFY8omt215
— Patrick Mahomes II (@PatrickMahomes) July 2, 2021
This is bull Shxt……tbh
— Odell Beckham Jr (@obj) July 2, 2021
Feeling so terrible for @itskerrii right now. Just know, we are with you!!
— Alex Morgan (@alexmorgan13) July 2, 2021
This is trash. Standing with @itskerrii 💯. This has BEEN outdated.
— Megan Rapinoe (@mPinoe) July 2, 2021
The notion that weed is a problematic “drug” is rooted in racism. It’s insane that Team USA would disqualify one of this country’s most talented athletes over thinking that’s rooted in hatred. It’s something they should be ashamed of. Also if weed made you fast, I’d be FloJo. https://t.co/swDLNoVcV3
— Seth Rogen (@Sethrogen) July 2, 2021
if it ain’t crack let her run track
— Melo (@MELOD1P) July 2, 2021
Also didn't her mother *just* die like give this woman a pass
— Julia Claire (@ohJuliatweets) July 2, 2021
In a week which saw college athletes finally start to make money, we’re hit with this draconian nonsense. https://t.co/I3lT7CoIWs
— Ariel Helwani (@arielhelwani) July 2, 2021
I also track the use of it throughout my season. Marijuana is not a sports enhancing drug. Cannabis is a plant.
— Natasha Cloud (@T_Cloud4) July 2, 2021
lawd theres so many rule followers weighing in.. What's yall's stance on sharing Netflix passwords? we good to break that rule orrrrrr.. naw?
— Elle Duncan (@elleduncanESPN) July 2, 2021
I get what folks are saying about smoking weed to deal with grief but also testing athletes for weed is unwarranted under any circumstance. The focus on her grief makes it seem like the testing itself is justified when it’s not.
— DEFUND & ABOLISH POLICE, REFUND OUR COMMUNITIES (@BreeNewsome) July 2, 2021
So you can drink alcohol and participate in the Olympics but you can’t use weed. Did I get this right?
— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) July 2, 2021
So Sha’Carri Richardson should just “follow the rules” after finding out her biological mother had just died but the folks who attacked the nation’s Capitol following a free and fair election should be allowed to skate without investigation? Got it.
— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) July 2, 2021
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