United States gymnastics has gained a lot of attention during their successful run at the 2016 Olympics in Rio. The “Fierce five” women won the majority of medals, their smiling faces and perfect routines inspire many young athletes to join the sport. Although, the sport has had negative attention lately. Before and since the games, reports have been made of sexual assault within the sport. One of the first reports accused 50 coaches of abusing their athletes. Law enforcements were never alerted of these cases, questioning the integrity of the messengers.
Another case by two women claim a doctor of USA gymnastics by the name of Larry Nassar sexually abused them. With help from a lawyer, Nassar denied doing anything wrong. The questions not only Nassar’s integrity, but mainly his virtues. Sexually abuse is terrible action and shows a lack in moral skills. Not only is Nassar accused of multiple sexual abuse charges, but him denying it shows lack of integrity.
According to the article, sexual abuse accusations within USA gymnastics is coming in at a high pace. Author, Juliet Macur, said, “The federation should at least stand up to say something to the girls and boys who participate in the sport, and the parents of those children.” The idea of having USA gymnastics reassure their participants would be a good way of standing up for something.
Some gym openers are aware it’s their responsibility to protect their members are standing up and changing rules at their own gyms before waiting for USA gymnastics to change overall rules. Some of these rules include not allowing anyone in locker rooms, not even parent, and no coach to be alone with the athlete at any time. These coaches are also keeping a close eye for inappropriate touching or unnecessary hands-on corrections. They also suggest going to the police station at the first sign of trouble.
It’s good to hear coaches with good morals are standing up and changing their rules to better the environment for their athletes and hopefully USA gymnastics will follow and fully address all the sexual abuse reports.