Hope Solo Claims Rapinoe Would Bully Players To Kneel For Racial Injustice At Soccer Games
By now, it’s likely that anyone, especially in the LGBTQ community, knows who Megan Rapinoe is. The colorful-haired United States Women’s Soccer League star has gained global attention not only for her sick skills on the field, prestigious athletic awards, or her bold and open homosexuality, but mostly for her activism. When Rapinoe isn’t busying dominating in her sport, she’s playing liaison and spokesperson alongside political heavyweights like Elizabeth Warren, Kamala Harris, and current President of the United States, Joe Biden. Rapinoe’s political activism has gained her headline after headline, especially after kneeling in 2016 during the United States National Anthem in solidarity with football superstar, Colin Kaepernick, against police brutality and racial injustice. She has spoken out about equal pay for women, especially as it relates to her in her sport of soccer, going so far as to filing a lawsuit that eventually was thrown out. Kneeling during the anthem, or other perceived forms of disrespect for the United States, has become a whirlwind of controversy and headache, especially as of the most recent Olympics. Rapinoe has led the charge for many women’s soccer stars to take a knee, but one Gold Medalist and former teammate of hers is claiming it’s not all united behind the scenes.
According to E! News, Rapinoe’s former teammate and Dancing with the Stars alumni, Hope Solo, is making claims that Rapinoe had previously bullied her and her other teammates to take a knee in solidarity with her cause. While speaking on sports podcast, All of Us: The U.S. Women’s Soccer Show, Solo discussed how uncomfortable her teammate of ten years’ pressure would make her. Solo, who is married to African American Football star, Jerramy Stevens, claims the decision to kneel for the anthem should be a sole decision, not a group led by one person. Solo told:
“I think the kneeling thing can be very divisive. I do appreciate the fact that there’s no national anthem right before the game to really remove that decision from athletes because that’s very tough. I’ve seen Megan Rapinoe almost bully players into kneeling because she really wants to stand up for something in her particular way. It’s our right as Americans to do it in whatever way we’re comfortable with. I think that’s really hard being on the main stage right now with so many political issues for athletes. There’s a lot of pressure. Ultimately, at the end of the day, our No. 1 focus should and has always been to win first.”
Rapinoe, always quick to come to a defense or spout on social media regarding any topic, has currently been silent since Solo’s blurb came out this morning. ESPN reports that Rapinoe currently has no plans to retire at age thirty-six, but does need some time to think about her future in sports after winning the bronze medal at this year’s Tokyo Olympics. Perhaps more activism may be in her future.
Writer’s Note A: This is the opinion of one Instinct Magazine contributor and does not reflect the views of Instinct Magazine itself or fellow contributors.