Olympic champion Simone Biles is upset about an anti-Nike tweet from USA Gymnastics interim president and CEO Mary Bono.
Bono was appointed Friday to hold the position while USA Gymnastics searches for a permanent successor to Kerry Perry, who resigned under pressure from the United States Olympic Committee in September after spending nine months on the job.
Biles responded Saturday to a tweet from Bono last month criticizing Nike following the release of its advertising campaign featuring former NFL quarterback Colin Kaepernick. Bono, a former Republican congresswoman, had posted a photo of herself drawing over a Nike logo on a golf shoe. By Saturday night, Ms. Bono had apologized and deleted the tweet.
don’t worry, it’s not like we needed a smarter usa gymnastics president or any sponsors or anything https://t.co/cYQizcjywn
— Simone Biles (@Simone_Biles) October 13, 2018
I regret the post and respect everyone’s views & fundamental right to express them. This doesn’t reflect how I will approach my position @USAGym I will do everything I can to help build, w/ the community, an open, safe & positive environment.
— Mary Bono (@MaryBonoUSA) October 14, 2018
Kaepernick was made the new face of Nike last month, bringing his advocacy and work as an activist against police brutality and the marginalization of black and brown communities to the brand’s massive platform. While the move boosted Nike’s sales, many — like Bono — criticized the company, because Kaepernick’s first public protests were kneeling during the national anthem.
The U.S.A. Gymnastics has been ridden with turmoil and missteps as it works to recover from a widespread sexual abuse scandal involving Lawrence G. Nassar, the former national team doctor who molested numerous young women. (Ms. Biles said this year that she had been sexually abused by Dr. Nassar.)
This is a classic case of watch what you tweet, it may come back to haunt you.