On Instagram Tuesday, United States Olympic gymnast Gabby Douglas released a statement commenting on the abuse allegations against former USA Gymnastics team doctor Larry Nassar made by teammate Aly Raisman as well as other gymnasts. Douglas’ statement comes after she was criticized via social media by teammate Simone Biles for victim-shaming Raisman on Twitter:
In the post, which also doubled as an apology to Raisman, Douglas wrote: “I didn’t view my comments as victim shaming because I know no matter what you wear, it NEVER gives anyone the right to harass or abuse you. It would be like saying that because of the leotards we wore, it was our fault that we were abused by Larry Nassar. I didn’t publicly share my experiences as well as many other things because for years we were conditioned to stay silent and honestly some things were extremely painful. I wholeheartedly support my teammates for coming forward with what happened to them.”
Douglas continued to apologize in a subsequent tweet which read as follows “I didn’t correctly word my reply & i am deeply sorry for coming off like i don’t stand alongside my teammates. Regardless of what you wear, abuse under any circumstance is never acceptable. i am WITH you.”
Raisman alleged in an interview with CBS’ 60 Minutes that aired Nov. 12, that she was one of the gymnasts who was sexually abused by Nassar. Raisman said, per the New York Post‘s Mark Moore “I didn’t know anything differently. We were told he is the best doctor. He’s the United States Olympic doctor and the USA Gymnastics doctor, and we were very lucky we were able to see him.”
In October McKayla Maroney, who also competed alongside Raisman and Douglas at the 2012 Summer Olympics in London, wrote on Twitter that she was also abused by Nassar. According to the CNN’s AnneClaire Stapleton and Eric Levenson, Maroney wrote”It seemed whenever and wherever this man could find the chance, I was ‘treated. It happened in London before my team and I won the gold medal, and it happened before I won my Silver.”
According to the Associated Press (via the Chicago Sun-Times) Nassar will soon “plead guilty to multiple charges of sexual assault and face at least 25 years in prison.” Nassar is reportedly due back in court Wednesday.
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