Serena Williams’ husband Alexis Ohanian recently applauded Simone Biles for her warm gesture for the victim of the Gymnastics Ireland racism incident. Ohanian also expressed his discontent towards the gymnastics organization for its 18-month late apology.
A video from Gymnastics Ireland’s GymStart event in Dublin recently went viral on social media. It showed a young black gymnast being snubbed while distributing medals to other participants.
Furthermore, it was found that the viral video was actually from March 2022 and that the girl’s parents had been fighting for a proper apology from Gymnastics Ireland for the last 18 months.
The issue was taken up by Sport Against Racism Ireland, a campaign group that informed the American civil rights activist Professor Harry Edwards. To express support and solidarity with the victim’s family, Edwards contacted the most decorated gymnast of all time who also belongs to the black community — Simone Biles.
Biles sent the victim’s family a video with a kind and supportive message, making the girl understand that she too deserved a medal. Biles said in her video:
“I wanted to let you know that I saw how you were treated at your GymStart event recently. I was completely shocked. I want you to know that you deserve a medal just like the other girls.”
Appreciating Simone Biles’ gesture, Serena Williams’s husband Alexis Ohanian expressed his views on the entire incident.
“I waited to comment on this because a part of me wanted to believe there was some missing piece of the story that would explain why it looked so wrong. There wasn’t. And this happened ages ago with no apology until this clip went viral. Good on @Simone_Biles,” he wrote on X.
When Serena Williams expressed pride in being a woman of color
During the George Floyd controversy in 2020, Serena Williams’s husband Alexis Ohanian decided to step down from the Reddit board and asked for his seat to be represented by a black candidate instead. His gesture was to show solidarity with the black community.
Furthermore, he appeared on Williams’s Instagram show ‘Serena Saturdays’ to discuss the controversy and his gesture. In the conversation, the couple cleared that Ohaian’s actions were not demanded by the tennis player. It was solely his wish to show support to the community.
Talking about herself being a black athlete, Serena Willaims said:
“I’ve always been proud of who I am, to be black… I wouldn’t be who I am, I wouldn’t be as strong as I am, I wouldn’t have been able to be as amazing as I have been in my career so far. I wouldn’t be me if I wasn’t black.”