In the same week that saw Russia banned from competing in the 2018 Winter Olympics, the issue of whether or not the United States will send its top athletes to compete for gold is supposedly up in the air.
If the United States is represented in Pyeongchang, then Lindsey Vonn will be among the favorites to win a gold medal. Before that even becomes a possibility, however, Vonn is already turning a political light on the Olympics by saying she would “absolutely not” accept an invitation to the White House if one is extended by President Donald Trump.
“Absolutely not,” Vonn said in an interview with CNN while training in Switzerland. “No. But I have to win to be invited. No, actually I think every US team member is invited so no I won’t go.”
Vonn won a gold medal at the 2010 games in Vancouver in the downhill event, and a bronze in the Super-G. After missing out on the 2014 Winter Olympics due to caution following an ACL injury, Vonn is hoping to have a big comeback in the 2018 games.
In what could be her final Olympics, Vonn is one of many American athletes who continue to voice their opinions about the current political state in Washington D.C. In an interview with CNN, Vonn made it clear she wants the chance to represent the American people and not, specifically, Trump.
“Well I hope to represent the people of the United States, not the president,” Vonn said in the interview. “I take the Olympics very seriously and what they mean and what they represent, what walking under our flag means in the opening ceremony. I want to represent our country well. I don’t think that there are a lot of people currently in our government that do that.”
"I hope to represent the people of the United States, not the President."
— CNN Sport (@cnnsport) December 7, 2017
Vonn is no fan of the current president, but her quote will likely be overanalyzed and torn apart from various political angles to fit varying political stances. Vonn will more than likely be seen as being disrespectful to Trump, when she is truly staying true to the true spirit of the games.
The Olympics are about representing the country, and not the elected officials that run it. It will be her comments about not accepting a potential invitation to the White House that will be more likely to strike a nerve, however, and our nation’s Tweeter In Chief will surely be chiming in on this interview at any given moment. Vonn’s invitation may be withdrawn before it is ever extended.
It’s not exactly as though the president has not done something like this before.
Going to the White House is considered a great honor for a championship team.Stephen Curry is hesitating,therefore invitation is withdrawn!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 23, 2017