When Simone Biles stepped away from her competitions at the Summer Olympics in Tokyo this may have well been the upcoming moment that was on her mind. This Wednesday Simone was part of a group of current and former members of the US gymnastics team who testified in a Senate hearing over how the case of former team doctor Larry Nassar was handled by the FBI. The list of current and former gymnasts included McKayla Maroney, Maggie Nichols and Aly Raisman.
Why Are They Being Asked To Open Up Their Wounds Again?
The current senate hearing as we mentioned is part of an investigation that is looking into the way that the FBI handled the Larry Nassar case. Nassar was sentenced to 175 years in prison in 2018. It’s safe to say that he’s not getting out any time soon. Why then are his victims once against forced to talk about their abuse? It seems to be that Biles and the other victims are doing willingly to ensure that not only Nassar pays for the damage that he caused. Biles blamed the entire United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee for permitting the abuse.
Gut-Wrenching Details About Her Abuse
Even though sadly it’s not the first time that we’ve heard Simone Biles and the other gymnasts present at the hearing talk about being abused by doctor Nassar it doesn’t get any easier to hear about it. Naturally, it wasn’t easy for Simone to recall those moments. She broke down in tears and looked completely broken down when she mentioned,
“I don’t want another young gymnast, Olympic athlete or any individual to experience the horror that I and hundreds of others have endured before, during and continuing to this day, in the wake — of the Larry Nassar abuse,”
Fighting Against The System
What Biles, Maroney, and others are essentially fighting for is to have members of the US Olympic Committee and USA Gymnastics brought to justice. Biles mentioned that she is certain that higher-ups in the organization knew about Nassar’s abuse habits. In her testimony, she mentioned that people inside the committee even knew who on the team had been victimized by the doctor. Yet they kept the information private for years! Biles said,
“USA Gymnastics and the United States Olympic and Paralympic Committee knew that I was abused by their official team doctor long before I was ever made aware of their knowledge,” She then explained why she’s making these claims saying, “In May of 2015, Rhonda Faehn, the former head of the USA Gymnastics women’s program was told by my friend and teammate, Maggie Nichols, that she suspected I, too, was a victim.”
McKayla Maroney Going Right For The Throat of The FBI
While Biles’ testimony was certainly emotional and passionate, it was McKayla who really presented a direct complaint of the way that the FBI had handled the investigation. Throwing shade not only at the Olympic Committee and Nassar himself, but the federal prosecutors that took her initial testimony. According to Maroney the FBI essentially shelved her testimony for more than a year. Then altered her initial statements when the investigation was made public. She told the Senate Committee,
“Not only did the FBI not report my abuse, but when they eventually documented my report, 17 months later, they made entirely false claims about what I said,”
She thinks that the FBI altered her statement to fit a narrative that they were pursuing the investigation under. Currently, besides Nassar the other people indicted in the investigation include former Michigan State University President Lou Anna Simon, Steve Penny, William Strampel, Kathie Klages, and Debbie Van Horn. All with either different links to Nassar or USA Gymnastics.
Here is the full McKayla Maroney opening statement. It’s hard to watch but necessary. Powerful.
"They had legal, legitimate evidence of child abuse and did nothing." pic.twitter.com/uSbOVOGq17
— Rex Chapman🏇🏼 (@RexChapman) September 15, 2021