Olympic bobsledder Lauren Gibbs won a silver medal for America at the 2018 Winter Olympics with Elana Meyers Taylor. But she’s at the center of a controversy of a non-athletic nature now, after she posted a selfie with Ivanka Trump and Sarah Sanders on social media — and received extensive pushback to her choice of image.
Medal-winning Olympic deleted a selfie she took with Ivanka Trump and White House press secretary Sarah Sanders after she received a torrent of online hate.
“It’s important to remember that we don’t have to agree on everything to get along, be civil to each other and enjoy each others company,” Gibbs wrote, posting the selfie. “#Itsforamerica it was a pleasure to meet you both!”
Her selfie rubbed many fans the wrong way. Some of her fans and critics were infuriated by the photo and a video showing her letting Sanders and Trump wear her silver medal. Others warned her she could lose sponsorships as a result of the photo , however — so much so that she ultimately took the image down.
“I deleted (by choice) the photo because I was tired of reading the hate being thrown back and forth,” she said on Twitter by way of explanation. “Whether you hate me for posting or hate me for taking it down… you are the same… hate from either side is hate.”
She denied that the photos meant she was complicit with Trump’s agenda.
“I am not falling for anything…but being nasty to them would not solve the issue…and don’t get me wrong there are many issues,” she wrote. “I am capturing the full experience of my first Olympics, they are part of it … again whether I like what they stand for or not.”
“We don’t have to agree on everything to get along, be civil to each other and enjoy each others company,” wrote @TeamUSA bobsledder @lagibbs84 posting a selfie of her with @IvankaTrump and @PressSec — now deleted after onslaught of hate pic.twitter.com/fo2cNIgBm3
— Charlie Spiering (@charliespiering) February 26, 2018