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Entrepreneur and hip-hop mogul Diddy is not happy with the Tokyo Olympics decision to suspend star sprinter Sha’Carri Richardson for 30 days following her positive marijuana test last week.
The Bad Boy Records label head took to Twitter and Instagram on Wednesday to air out his frustrations with the organization writing that Richardson’s Olympic goals and dreams were stripped away “for using a legal substance.”
“I’m tired of white people sitting in a room making up decisions that affect our hopes and dreams,” he wrote. “They will keep treating our athletes like slaves and entertainment until we shut down on these people!”
Diddy further clarified his statements in a second post connecting Sha’Carri’s suspension to the historically negative impact of marijuana and its effects on Black people.
“To be absolutely clear about my previous tweet, the point I’m making is that marijuana has been used against my people since some white people in an office (DEA/FBI) saw it as a way to entrap Black Jazz artists to shut down the movement happening in Harlem,” Diddy continued.
“So many of our brothers, sisters, mothers, daughters, and sons are rotting in jail for marijuana and it’s JUST NOT RIGHT.
Now, to see them using this against a young Black woman that is on the edge of her greatness, all because some white man decided to make it illegal, is shameful.”
Towards the end of his message, Diddy compared the 21-year-old athlete’s ordeal to a weed-related charge that Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps faced back in November of 2008. Phelps was suspended for three months after a photo surfaced of him holding a water pipe or bong typically used to smoke marijuana. However, Phelps reportedly engaged in the risky acts months after he was set to compete in the Beijing Olympics in August of that year.
“Let me be very clear, marijuana does not make you run faster. That’s a fact. This whole situation is bullsh*t, and if they let Michael Phelps swim they should #LETHERRUN!” Diddy concluded.
The New York Times noted that while marijuana was prohibited that year during the Olympics, the substance was not prohibited during the “out of competition period” making it difficult for the organization to suspend Phelps who went on to win 8 gold medals during the 2008 Olympics.
Some users across social media have criticized the star for getting his facts wrong.
One person on Instagram wrote:
“That’s where your wrong Diddy. When photos came out showing Phelps smoking he was suspended for three months and lost endorsements!! She knowingly broke the rules now are the rules krazy yes but she knew what the rules were.”
On the other hand, fans of Diddy have commented in support of his cry for Sha’Carri. One person on Twitter replied:
“They don’t wanna talk about it. Like always they rather look at the branches instead of the root. Until all the systematic racism is uprooted we will continue to experience setbacks. We only want to look at the surface.”
What are your thoughts on Sha’Carri Richardson’s suspension?