January 24, 2018

An Open Letter to the Sponsors Leaving USA Gymnastics

by

USA Gymnastics Sponsors

To the sponsors pulling their support of USA Gymnastics:

I get it. Like the executives of your companies, I’ve watched as dozens of young women detailed the horror they experienced under the guise of medical treatment by the USA Gymnastics team doctor, Larry Nassar. And you don’t want to be associated with that story. You don’t want your big brand name connected with this pedophile rapist. Totally understand your position.

Your brands are wholesome and all-American. They’re brands that evoke innocence (Ivory and Tide from Proctor & Gamble), healthy eating (Kellogg’s), and pushing through (Under Armour) knowing you can reward your hard work (Hershey’s). These are America’s brands! I know each of these companies have strong reputations to uphold and don’t want to be connected with something as horrible as the serial molestation of dozens of girls. Totally get it. I think most of us do.

However, I wish y’all would reconsider pulling your sponsorship of USA Gymnastics. I don’t fault you for wanting to distance yourself from the governing body, USA Gymnastics, that seemingly turned a blind eye to what this monster did to these women when they were just little girls trying to reach the pinnacle of their sport. If I was a sponsor I’d probably want to get as far away from this story as possible.

By withdrawing your financial support of these amazing athletes you’re making it even harder for them to succeed. Parents are already making huge financial sacrifices. But those sacrifices aren’t going to fund the major competitions, coaches, gyms, travel, and the countless other professionals these girls need to compete at this elite level. The years of support you’ve given to USA Gymnastics allowed so many young girls to train and compete at the highest level. Your financial support is what helped these women become the Magnificent Seven, the Fierce Five, and the Final Five. Without corporate sponsors many of these young women would never have had the opportunity to represent the USA and capture the hearts, and medals, as they did.

With nearly 150,000 athletes registered as members, USA Gymnastics oversees six disciplines: Women’s Gymnastics, Men’s Gymnastics, Trampoline and Tumbling, Rhythmic Gymnastics, Acrobatic Gymnastics and Gymnastics for All. USA Gymnastics isn’t only about the 10 men and women who make the US Olympic teams. Kids all over the country look to compete in the thousands of sanctioned competitions, trying to get better, pushing the limits of their bodies and physics.

Walking away from your sponsorships, each of your companies is allowing one man to continue his reign of devastation on the sport of gymnastics. USA Gymnastics screwed up. Big time! Everyone who believed this horrible man instead of these young women needs to be banned from the sport. USA Gymnastics needs to clean house and ensure that those who run the program can’t allow this to happen ever again. Make those demands, but don’t stop supporting these athletes. Put restrictions in place and demand better oversight. USA Gymnastics owes apologies to so many people. Including all your companies who financially supported the morally bankrupt former leadership of USA Gymnastics.

Like all of us, you deserve answers. But you have a power we don’t have. Millions of dollars. Your support can demand the change the sport needs. Your money can forge a new path of leadership. And your money can also create opportunities for a new generation of strong and brave girls.

Hershey’s, Kellogg’s, Proctor & Gamble, Under Armour, AT&T, and any other sponsors who are withdrawing financial support of USA Gymnastics, I ask you to reconsider. You can’t change the past, but you can change the future. By withdrawing your support, you’re allowing Nassar’s actions to continue to have a place in USA Gymnastics. He doesn’t deserve that power. He doesn’t deserve to destroy the entire sport. If you didn’t listen to each of the women speak, I urge you to take the time. Each of these women was brave to come forward and one by one join together to combine their strength, not just for themselves, but also for many who can’t. For their peers who either can’t speak or are unable. These women came forward to stop a predator. By withdrawing your support for the sport they love, you’re telling them you’re not brave enough. You’re taking the easy way out and distancing yourself, from what you think is a system that allowed their nightmare.

Why can’t you see that by continuing to support USA Gymnastics you’re not part of the problem, you’re part of the solution. Sponsoring USA Gymnastics shows that you believe in the athlete. That you believe these young people deserve the opportunity to rise to the pinnacle of the sport. Your continued sponsorship is not an endorsement of a failed system, it’s a demonstration that you stand with these survivors. Don’t make this about Larry Nassar and his enablers. Instead, understand that your support of USA Gymnastics can be a statement of support for the athletes who did nothing wrong.

I ask you to reconsider despite having nothing to gain personally.  I’m not a former gymnast nor the parent of a gymnast. I’m someone who buys your products, though. I’m someone who watches your commercials and gets a lump in my throat when I hear ‘Proud Sponsor of USA Gymnastics.” I appreciate that your companies support the dreams of little girls and boys who work hard because they see themselves standing atop a podium hearing the US National Anthem playing for them. I’m not walking away from you because you supported USA Gymnastics when their leadership failed their athletes. And I don’t want you to walk away from athletes who get back up every time they fall.

Thank you and I hope you’ll reconsider.

NOTE: Several hours after this post went public, the US Olympic Committee issued a letter outlining a series of demands on USA Gymnastics or risk decertification.

Sara

{ 40 comments }

Sam January 25, 2018 at 12:24 pm

How dare you. My daughter, who also is Sara was a member of USA gymnastics. I am far more angry at the “responsible” organization than this sick man. He is sick and has many issues which he now has time in prison, to figure out. First admit culpability and imprison the guilty parties at the organization then ask for forgiveness. Sara, if you really are who you say you are, do not have a daughter who has been molested so please stick to whatever it is you know. Along with MSU, USA gymnastics is worse than the hypocrisy of the Catholic church. You sicken me.

Sara January 25, 2018 at 1:00 pm

Sam, I understand your anger. I’m also angry at the leadership of MSU and USA Gymnastics that put their interests ahead of protecting their athletes. You don’t know me yet you say I sicken you. Why? Because I dare to address the sponsors who make it possible for people like your daughter to pursue their sport? Because I appeal to them not to abandon the gymnasts who did nothing wrong? Because I urge the sponsors to understand that by walking away from the 150,000 young people who participate in varying levels of gymnastics they’re hurting the athletes more than those who looked the other way?

The scandal of USA Gymnastics is worse than what happened at Penn State and will challenge the Catholic Church as to the level of depravity of the leadership. However, why do the victim have to continue to bear the burden? Few sponsors left Penn State, focusing instead on continuing to support the athletes who did nothing wrong. Millions continue to financially support the Catholic Church. The young people who love gymnastics should not be the ones punished. As I said in my article, the Sponsors wield great power and can make demands to clean house and establish safety policies that parents don’t have.

You’re obviously angry. But you’re directing it at me when I’ve done nothing wrong. All I’ve done is ask that the sponsors see a different perspective than solely consider the need to distance themselves.

Daisy January 25, 2018 at 12:48 pm

I believe the organizations state they will reconsider sponsorship when changes have been made. I guarantee USAG will do a better job of burning down the house to rebuild it quickly without the sponsorships.

Ashley January 25, 2018 at 12:54 pm

I think it’s great sponsors are pulling from USAG. This problem is bigger than Nassar. Besides the sexual abuse, which in itself is horrific, there is also psychological, emotional, tearing down, humiliation going on, not only on the national level, but in clubs throughout the nation. This all has to stop. So proud of all these young women and girls for speaking up. USAG needs to fall apart completely and start over with all new board and committee members. Don’t talk, show these women and girls who have come forward that there is change being made. Sponsors will return when the change is made.

Sara January 25, 2018 at 3:39 pm

Why does the entire sport need to fall apart because of a few people? Clean house, yes. Install a new board, absolutely. Establish better rules and oversight. But who do you think is going to pay for all this change? No one does it for free. Are you willing to pay thousands more in dues and fees, have your kid give up competing in major events, and tell kids there is nothing to strive for just to prove a point? Fix the problems and get the brands behind you demanding the change. Why continue to punish all these kids?

Alexandra January 25, 2018 at 12:55 pm

You are out of your mind…would you want your company or brand to support the biggest case of sexual abuse in the history of sports and the hundreds of people who pretended to have no idea that it was happening?

Sara January 25, 2018 at 3:32 pm

Obviously, you didn’t read. And, no, I’m not out of my mind. This isn’t about supporting a company, brand, or people who pretended to have no idea that it was happening. Rather, it’s about supporting the thousands of athletes who don’t deserve to be pushed away from a sport they love. Sponsors can demand change in a way no one else can. Did you stop buying Nike or Pepsi products when they refused to walk away from Penn State?

Kate January 25, 2018 at 4:51 pm

I did read every word, and you are very confused. Sponsors demand change specifically BY walking away. They can return, with their millions in cash, the very next day if actual change is made. When USAG ‘cleans house’ and makes a safe environment for our children, the sponsors will return. Until every person involved in creating a world where Nasser could thrive is gone, I applaud every sponsor who drops USAG like the caustic agent they are.

Sara January 25, 2018 at 9:26 pm

Taking a scorched earth perspective will benefit no one. The demands and directives for change will come from the Sponsors and the USOC. You don’t destroy everything and hope for change, destroying the hopes and dreams of so many kids. I am far from confused. I see the reality that successful change can come from continuing to support the gymnasts who did absolutely nothing wrong. Using your logic, we should demand every movie studio close down and put every actor and all the supporting personnel out of business until the Academy, Screen Actor’s Guild, and every company in “Hollywood” until “Hollywood” fixes their racist/sexist/misogynist/assault problem.

Michael Gleason January 25, 2018 at 9:41 pm

Sara i will say this because well I can I completely and 100% agree with you at the end of the day it punishes the kids how can people look to there kids an say therea nothing you should strive for or pull the kids out of sports they love. You wanna talk about wrp1ng that is as bad ad labeling a German shepard as a mean dog just cause he has a low bark. How ever do o agree change needs to be made yup and oh lets see new CEO 3 boars resigned the msu President resigned an chances are of you really get down to it all the old board members and msu reps are going to Probly fa e prison time or hefty fines.or loses what ever licenses they have. Ok the sponsers pull out yes on one hand i can see there point but at the aame time people are close minded i for one look at things from many diffrwnt angles including that from talking to other victims of sexual assault to literally talking to poloce among others. The words me to shoyld never be said by anyone again. Now forbthe part that is gonna get more hear i will gove is at a second chance. Coming from a military family and knowing what is possible in the world and what changes can happen. The usoc has gave there demands but also has offered help to usag to fix the issues and to help. At the end pf the day Sara I applaud you and your words.

Diana January 26, 2018 at 5:55 am

Sara
Give up. You are using logic and in today’s society that bird will not fly. Emotion will want everybody punished right down to the toddler in its first Mommy and me class. We are a family that has not one but three young girls participating in the sport. From experience I can tell you the cost is prohibitive. I have personally witness talented and interested young ladies have to withdraw because their families could no longer afford the expense. Not every child is interested in the sacrifices needed to make the National team, but there are colleges that recruit talented athletes and offer scholarships. Maybe some of these sponsors should redirect their funds to a more local level to give those with the desire a chance compete and possibly opportunities they would not have otherwise. As in any sport these children learn the rewards of hard work and perseverance, a higher sense of self esteem and are involved in activity that keeps them from other unfavorable activities. What happen was really wrong and the USGA was guilty of turning turning a blind eye and maybe a cover up. They certainly were not following common practices used in the medical community to insure this could not happen. You are correct the girls at every level would be punished when they need support most. I am sure that if you ask the girls that had the courage to finally come forward if they want a total collapse of the organization or real change they would pick real change. Fix the The USGA and the USOC but do not pull the rug from under a child that has worked hard for the last 10 to 13 years to get to that point. It was not an easy road.

Elizabeth January 25, 2018 at 4:40 pm

This is such an unbelievably absurd and enablist letter. As long as the money is pouring in from sponsors, USAG is never going to change.

And are you really worried about sponsors pulling out when USAG is facing total bankruptcy from the civil suits filed against it? For perspective, Penn State settled with victims for $109M. There are roughly 8 times the number of victims in this case. You do the math.

USAG is going to be insolvent very soon, and it will have nothing to do with the sponsors and everything to do with their immoral and unethical behavior. If you can’t see that, I truly pity you.

Sarah January 25, 2018 at 5:37 pm

USAG is already changing and has been for some time now. All that losing sponsors will do is make it harder for the athletes still trying to practice this sport. Everyone is forgetting about the kids currently training, trying to become the next big name. If we tear down USAG without even giving them a chance to make changes, we only hurt the kids who were not even involved in this at all. People are letting their anger control their emotions and not thinking everything through. Ok, bankrupt USAG, let them fall. And then what happens to the dreams of the kids who wanted to compete at the big events, kids who are currently training to compete at World Championships? Who cares? Doesn’t matter? You can’t just be ok with USAG falling without thinking about how that affects those that had nothing to do with this nightmare. Let’s just fix the program and make the sport of Gymnastics stronger.

Elizabeth January 26, 2018 at 2:06 am

You act like USAG is the only way gymnastics did survive? Did you forget that before USAG, AAU was the governing body for gymnastics?

In case you haven’t seen the news, USOC has just given USAG 6 days to replace its entire board or it will be terminated. So while you keep telling us USAG is willing to change, it’s actually not. USOC has called for a new board, and thus far everyone is having to be forced out because no one will actually take responsibility and step down on their own.

So now the USOC is telling USAG it has less than a week to fire everyone at the top or it will be terminated in totality.

So much for your silly assertions that USAG is willing to change. You are enabler. Dangerous and pathetic. Thank god you’re in charge of nothing.

https://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/2018/01/25/usoc-gives-usa-gymnastics-board-six-days-resign-federation-decertified/1068099001/

Sara January 26, 2018 at 6:54 am

I’m far from an enabler, whereas you are. You are supporting a system of silence by wanting to destroy a sport rather than demand change. I am well aware that after my post was written the USOC has made demands on the USA Gymnastics and leadership. It took them long enough! And using your logic, we should be demanding the complete dismantling of Michigan State University. Get real! It didn’t happen at Penn State and it’s not going to happen at MSU. Instead, logic and not emotion will prevail with the goal to emerge better, stronger, as as the gold standard for athletic organizations.

I didn’t forget that before USAG the AAU was the governing body for ALL Olympic-level sports. And, unlike you, I know my history and have read about the Amateur Sports Act of 1978 that took control away from AAU as well as being informed about all the various complaints about AAU for their poor leadership, failure to properly prepare athletes, breach of privacy, and lack of oversight. But you go ahead and call me names if that makes you feel like a better person.

Ricky February 12, 2018 at 10:59 pm

Most help articles on the web are inaccurate or inentcreoh. Not this!

Sarah January 25, 2018 at 5:47 pm

Thank you for writing this. I’m sure you are going to get a lot of hate because people can’t see how this will affect all the athletes long-term. No one is thinking, if USAG falls completely how that will affects the thousands of kids training as we speak. There’s just a witch hunt to make the whole program end. I completely agree with everything you wrote and hope people will come to their senses once the anger settles. I get the anger, I’m mad just like the rest of the world. But I also want the best for the future of gymnastics and I’m sure the girls who testified want the sport to continue as I know some of them are still planning on competing but how will they do that if there is no money, no sport? You can’t just start up a new program in a blink of an eye like some people are saying. It doesn’t work that way. Hang in there with the negative comments and good for you for helping to support the future of gymnastics.

Joshua January 25, 2018 at 7:24 pm

I agree with almost every word written here. If the sponsors pull from USAG, what is that doing? The sponsors were not involved in anything that was happening, neither did they know. Usag is all about the athletes, and if there is no money left and no board to stand up, then USAG is nothing. All the girls who spoke up have done nothing, unless we support them. They were in this sport and with the help of sponsors got to where they were. Everyone is supporting them by posting in the media, but what is that really doing? Companies, if you want to support the woman who spoke up and who went through everything to have to speak up, then you should support them! Start a fund so this never has to happen again! Help pave the way for all the dreams of girls and boys who love watching the Olympic solely for gymnastics. Help pave the way to keep USA as strong as it is!

James January 25, 2018 at 8:21 pm

Sara, thank you for saying this. Everything you say is correct. However, without these kinds of negative consequences, change may not happen.

I’d rather see these sponsors redirect their support to regional, state and local organizations for now. The elite program will function ok, and secretly some of the coaches might prefer to be left alone to train their athletes.

We, the membership, give a surplus of about 9 million dollars to USAG over and above what it costs to cover the benefits we receive. That surplus is enough to support the elite athletes, though it’s not enough to support the six-figure salaries of some of the folks at the top in the head office.

We’ll be ok, the athletes will be ok. Money is not the problem. Let’s weed out those who failed in their oversight. Let’s give back to the athletes and coaches at the national level the control over what happens to them. Then we can ask for these sponsors to step up again for the national program.

Alison January 25, 2018 at 9:56 pm

I agree! Great article!!

Loryn Duncan-Marcil January 25, 2018 at 11:47 pm

Why? Let him win? Let him single handedly ruin the American Gymnastics legacy that these young women earned while some were being destroyed internally by him? I say NO!! Do the opposite. Enroll your child. Support the sponsors. Attend meets. And, enjoy the beautiful sport. These girls have worked too hard. The legacy does not have to be tarnished…only if we let it. Today, I sent my daughter to practice around male and female coaches and trainers. Tomorrow, and the next day, and the next day…I’ll do the same. God bless this amazing sport and the athletes who do it!!

Sara January 26, 2018 at 7:00 am

I have a number of friends in the gymnastics world, as coaches, parents, and gym owners who would be devastated if we allowed the poor leadership of USAG to completely destroy the sport. Absolutely they’re demanding change from the top down. But they also don’t want to completely destroy a sport and the dreams of so many athletes because of a few. Good luck to your daughter!

Tina V Lewis January 26, 2018 at 12:10 am

Thank you for writing this. Being the voice of logic is not always easy – but I support you. I agree with your words. Maybe when everyone gets past the anger and looks towards the future they will be able to see the logic in your words. We should never allow a few bad apples to ruin it for the rest of us.

Sara January 26, 2018 at 6:55 am

Thank you, Tina. I appreciate your support!

Lisa January 26, 2018 at 8:09 am

No, they NEED to leave because unfortunately that’s the only language USAG understands. But they need to come back as soon the Organization is rebuilt because the athletes need the suppert.

Becky January 26, 2018 at 10:43 am

By pulling out enmasse, it appears they are upset with the injured, brave young women who have come forward with the truth.
If that is not the message, they need to stay and support this sport. They would not pull out and leave the rest of the athletes hanging because of one person’s despicable actions in any other sport.
By leaving these athletes hanging, they are strengthening the bad side of this story.
Instead, they need to sell their products featuring great athletes engaged in this sport and donate half the proceeds to a legal defense fund for them.
They have the power to take a powerful stand and make this situation a little better for all of the victims.

Amanda Turner January 26, 2018 at 6:15 pm

Is this satire? Surely it must be. As though sponsor money pays for grips and leotards for level 5s and level 8s. It doesn’t even cover TOPS and developmental camps – their families have to pay for that, travel included! Go look at USAG’s 990 form. The CEO made almost $700k in 2016 and despite the USOC demanding he leave, he retired with $1 to 6 MILLION in cash and IS STILL GETTING PAID. The women’s program manager made more than $350k. What does she do exactly? She certainly doesn’t call any of the national team members and ask if they need help or therapy. Sponsor money offsets event costs and now pays for legal fees and lobbying. Why should P&G pay for USAG to ? Why should AT&T be affiliated with a program that kept young girls training in a hell-like prison in a forest with a pedophile WHERE THEY HAD NO CELL PHONE SERVICE. Surely this is satire, or you have no idea the role USA Gymnastics played in this tragedy, or you don’t understand that corporations must answer to consumers who will be happy to boycott their brands. Go look through the 2016 990 form and tell us how much sponsor money went to the athletes as opposed to USAG executive salaries and travel perks for a board of directors. https://usagym.org/PDFs/Forms/Special%20forms/IRS990-2016.pdf

Sara January 27, 2018 at 10:31 pm

No, it’s not satire. And I know how corporations work. I also know quite a bit about the role many individuals played in this tragedy, some of whom have yet to be held responsible. I am well aware that an organization such as USAG is staffed with many people who are likely over-paid and underqualified. But that alone does not make them culpable. Complaining to me about the CEO’s salary and the contractual payouts doesn’t make me responsible for their decisions or how they run the organization. If you’re a member and disagreed then you should have voice your concerns and gathered others to support you in demanding change.

If you’ve known about these questionable practices and said nothing, don’t blame me for wanting brands to support these young men and women who have worked so hard to reach the top of their sport. If you’ve known that a training facility was, in your words, “a hell-like prison”, and you did nothing then you need to shoulder some responsible for not speaking up. If you did speak up and no one listened my heart goes out to you and understands your pain.

But understand, as I do, that without brand sponsorships so many young people will miss out on the opportunity to pursue their dream.

Marilana January 26, 2018 at 8:45 pm

There will always be a way to a new light if the right precautions are taken and sides are all supported. While it is understandable why sponsors withdrew; I’m sorry you had to get stuck in this mess.
I think proof is the biggest thing people need right now— proof that it is safe for these young women to go back to the sport that we all love so much.
You have a point Sara- they shouldn’t let one persons actions destroy a sport. On the other hand however, if there had been a better overseeing governing committee, and listened to earlier on, none of this would’ve occurred, and more girls wouldn’t have had to gone through this.

Bob January 27, 2018 at 5:18 am

Sponsorship is not charity. Fortune 500 companies sponsor sports to get eyeballs and to have the sports’ positive attributes reflected on them. They want something in return for their money. Gymnastics does not get a big audience outside of the Olympics so the only reason to sponsor the sport is to get positive associations. And right now, the associations are anything but positive. As a brand, why would I want to be associated with an organization that has no regard for young men and women?

Larry Nassar isn’t the only one. He was just the latest and most infamous in a series of prominent individuals within the sport of gymnastics who willfully abused the athletes under his charge.

Sara January 27, 2018 at 10:18 pm

“As a brand, why would I want to be associated with an organization that has no regard for young men and women?”, well, that would be an excellent question to ask Nike, who stayed on as a sponsor at Penn State after dozens of boys were sexually abused and didn’t see any backlash. And for all the sponsors of professional sports that objectifies women, looks the other way with regard to domestic violence, and rewards its athletes for cheating. Sponsors remain affiliated for lots of reasons.

As for Nassar, it’s likely he isn’t the only one. And that is a horrible thought. But speak up, don’t just walk away in silence and be complicit.

Bob January 28, 2018 at 2:03 am

Yeah, they remain affiliated because of the huge audiences that gymnastics does not have and the numbers to back it up. Gymnastics does not have those numbers and now has absolutely nothing to offer to a brand.

Meredith January 27, 2018 at 7:23 am

Hi Sara, I want to thank you. Thank you for helping to be a part of this change that desperately needs to happen. I agree with you 100%. I am a former MSU gymnast. I have a child in gymnastics now. I would hate to see the sport I still love crumble completely for this next generation of gymnasts. I would proudly support any sponsors who were willing to stick around and support the change by demanding USAG to rebuild itself.

Alison. Webster January 27, 2018 at 12:23 pm

I can totally understand both sides to this argument. No company wants to be associated with such atrocities, but it’s a shame that gymnastics who have been both directly and indirectly affected by this to suffer more due to lack of funding.
Maybe these sponsors could work together to form some sort of direct scholarship program for athletes – bypassing USAG – shows that they support the sport and the athletes, and take a stand against the organization that allowed this to happen.

Sara January 27, 2018 at 10:12 pm

There really should be a better way to get the funds directly to the athletes. I think many sporting committees need to do a better job at that.

Amanda Turner January 27, 2018 at 6:32 pm

I notice that my comment is still mysteriously awaiting moderation despite two comments posted after it being approved. And you replying to one. How odd.

Sara January 27, 2018 at 10:40 pm

Yes, your comment was awaiting moderation because you included a link, which triggers moderation. Though I don’t owe you any explanation about how I manage my website, I do have a life and other obligations that take priority over answering people who feel the need to spew their anger on my website.

Elizabeth January 28, 2018 at 4:04 pm

The money the companies gave to USAG was payment for reputationalbrnefirs and brand associations to their companies. Once Nassar’s wrong-doing and the immense cover up for which USAG has been responsible; when it became clear that Nassar could only exist in the cruel training environment of the USA national gymnastics team, those benefits were gone, so of course the companies didn’t want to pay any more.
The money they were paying could arguably have been going to fund that culture and make the abuse possible. And much of it would have gone to pay the USAG directors whose negligence and distorted sense of priorities caused the environment that enabled Nassar.

USA gymnastics (with a small g) is a network of privately funded gym clubs. The gymnasts pay the clubs a fee and in the main the recreational base of gymnastics pays for the elite. Membership fees, not corporate sponsorship, were responsible for the training of the USA WAG.

Sponsorship monies propped up USAG (with a capital G), paid Directors’ salaries and enabled the big competitions and promotions. Each year the USA sends the largest delegation to world champs, creating a bottom heavy travelling organisation that includes more officials than gymnasts!

USAG will probably be just as successful in the future, if not more so, without the corrupt intentions if those who led it to the edge of destruction.

The risk for WAG worldwide is that the broadcast companies and the IOC lose faith in the sport and pull their support, leaving it without major TV incomes and an audience, and a major platform by which to promote itself worldwide.

I was prepared to accept the diminished state of the sport itself, led by the USA, if it meant safer sport and healthier athletes. But it now seems we not only have a truly unattractive sport form dominating the podiums (with a few notable exceptions) we also have a truly horrendous scenario behind the scenes of the world’s leading team which for so long has promoted itself as wholesome, fair and beyond reproach.
Corporations should not give money to this sport. They should add their voices to the questions being posed to the USA sports establishment. How did this happen?

Until this has been changed root and branch, gymnastics lives in the shadow of Nassar and risks destruction.

Virginia February 15, 2018 at 10:33 pm

Wow no one has reached out too all these concerns listed below!

Sara January 26, 2018 at 6:39 am

Thank you for your kind words. A lot of things went wrong despite parents and athletes coming forward. Hopefully level heads will prevail and in the process of holding USAG leadership accountable the sport will be able to re-emerge in a way that better supports the athletes and families who love gymnastics.

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