Megan Rapinoe Speaks Out Against The Capitol Riot

By Zac Cornell

USWNT superstar Megan Rapinoe spoke out at a media conference against the attack on the Capitol building, exemplifying why she has become a prominent spokesperson for equal rights around the world. Rapinoe said that she believes the Trump-loving mob that descended on Washington, D.C. are motivated by race and that Americans must finally reckon with our underlying racism problem. As reported in The Guardian, Rapinoe said, “Hopefully [it’s] the final straw for so many people to really understand the reason that we’re here is because we never have actually had a reckoning with what our country really is. This is America. Make no mistake about it. I think we showed very much our true colors. This is not the first time we’ve seen a murderous mob like that. Unleashing a white supremacy mob is nothing new to America as people of color, black and brown, know very well.”

Rapinoe, who has regularly expressed extreme disapproval of President Trump, added, “It’s just striking how horrible it was, and just how insane it was, from the climate in the country being such that we have our political leaders, our chief political leader, inciting an actual real-life murderous and deadly insurrection against his own government, against his own people, against his own party.”

The athlete also expressed strong support for legal action against all of the perpetrators, saying, “All the calls for unity and moving forward obviously cannot come without justice. If we do not punish this and investigate this to the fullest extent, it only encourages more of this to happen.” She continued, “We should not underestimate what could have happened. I think we are very lucky that that officer led that mob away from the Senate. We saw people with weapons and people with zip ties and they put a gallows up outside the Capitol building where they were chanting to hang the vice-president of the United States. So anybody thinking, ‘Oh well, they really wouldn’t have done that much and I think we should give them sort of a pass’. Maybe we haven’t seen this in our lifetimes, but I think that we should make no mistake about what the intent was. It was a murderous moment. Five people are dead and we can’t bring them back.”

As politicians and people around the country are grappling with the shock of the riot and trying to understand how our country’s divisiveness has come to this, Rapinoe has explanations and hopes for Americans and lawmakers. “Hopefully this is the last layer that we needed to rip off, although it’s been abundantly clear for a number of hundred years what the real issue is,” she said. “This was about white supremacy, and holding up white supremacy, and I hope that we can see this and move forward with justice. I think that’s the only way that we can actually move forward. I think it’s all out in the open, it’s all stripped bare, and so hopefully the lawmakers will have the courage to do what needs to be done and every day citizens as well.”

When asked about a Trump supporter that was photographed wearing a USWNT sweatshirt after participating in the Capitol protest, Rapinoe said, “I feel like I can probably speak on behalf of a lot of my teammates, that is not the kind of fan that we will welcome. The US crest is not to be confused with anything that has to do with white supremacy, anything that has to do with the Trump administration, anything that has to do with that divisive culture that we saw on the Capitol.”

Rapinoe added of US Women’s soccer, “We want to create, and continue to create, a place that is inclusive and safe and diverse for our fans and for our players to play in front of and for people to watch on TV and for the media to cover. So don’t bring that bullshit here.”

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