Hollywood actress Gabrielle Union is behind U.S. sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson following her 30-day Olympic ban.
Union thinks Richardson should be allowed to run. We do too.
“Weed is great for many a thing but running faster isn’t one of them,” she wrote, adding, “Let her run.”
Richardson won the 100 meters at the U.S. Olympic Track and Field Trials on June 19. The positive test result would nullify her win and could lead to a one-month or longer suspension from the sport.
On Friday morning, she apologized for the positive marijuana result during an interview with the “TODAY” show.
“I apologize for the fact that I didn’t know how to control my emotions or deal with my emotions during that time,” she said. “Don’t judge me. I am human.… I just happen to run a little faster.”
Richardson explained that she used marijuana as a coping mechanism after learning that her biological mother had died.
“To put on a face, to have to go in front of the world and put on a face and hide my pain, I don’t know … Who am I to tell you how to cope when you’re dealing with pain? Or you’re dealing with a struggle that you’ve never experienced before? Or that you never thought you’d have to deal with?” she said.
She added, “I would like to say to my friends, my family, my sponsorship, to the haters too: I apologize. As much as I’m disappointed, I know that when I step on the track I don’t represent myself, I represent a community that has shown me great support, great love.”
On Friday, Nike issued a statement sharing their support for Richardson.
“We appreciate Sha’Carri’s honesty and accountability and will continue to support her through this time,” says the official statement from the brand, according to The Undefeated’s Aaron Johnson.
National Women’s Soccer League Sydney Leroux also had the young sprinter’s back.
“I feel for @itskerrii. We need to look at what athletes are being given to deal with the mental and physical demands of their sport. If Xanax and opioids are legal, then marijuana should be too,” Leroux wrote.