Shani Davis is a remarkably gifted speed skater currently competing – I think he’s still willing to compete – in the 2018 winter olympics.
When a vote was taken to decide who would be the flag bearer at the opening ceremonies, there was a tie between Mr. Davis and Erin Hamlin, a four-time Olympian and luge specialist.
So a coin was flipped to decide who would carry the flag – and Ms. Hamlin won.
You’d think that would end things right there, wouldn’t you?
Well, it didn’t. And – this is sad bordering on disgusting – Davis decided to make a racial issue of it.
Here is what he tweeted:
I am an American and when I won the 1000m in 2010 I became the first American to 2-peat in that event. @TeamUSA dishonorably tossed a coin to decide its 2018 flag bearer. No problem. I can wait until 2022. #BlackHistoryMonth2018 #PyeongChang2018pic.twitter.com/dsmTtNkhJs
— Shani Davis (@ShaniDavis) February 8, 2018
Black History Month? Willing or losing a coin flip has something to do with Black History Month?
Unless Davis is claiming the coin-flip was fixed in some way, this is a stunningly stupid trivialization of racism.
Tell us, Shani, if you had won the coin-flip should women’s groups have protested on the grounds that it was sexist for a man to get the honor that way?
Do you think Erin Hamlin owes you a personal apology?
And, just in case there was any doubt about racism being inserting into this 100% non-racial situation, in comes Jesse Jackson, to answer Shani Davis’s tweet with one of his own, which says:
“The choice to represent our country as #flagbearer in the @Olympics should never be determined by the flip of a coin. The Committee should immediately institute a more appropriate system to make such a significant determination. @ShaniDavis