Transgender Olympian’s motivating hope: To burn U.S. flag on the podium

Transgender Olympian’s motivating hope: To burn U.S. flag on the podium
Rider tests Tokyo's Olympic BMX course in May 2021. Reuters video, YouTube

By Harry Wilmerding

A transgender athlete competing at the upcoming Tokyo Olympics in freestyle BMX said that they wanted to win the event in order to burn an American flag on the podium, Fox News reported.

“My goal is to win the Olympics so I can burn a US flag on the podium. This is what they focus on during a pandemic. Hurting trans children,” BMX rider Chelsea Wolfe Wrote on Facebook in March, Fox reported. The athlete said that the comment doesn’t mean she doesn’t care about the U.S. and those who misunderstand the remark are “sorely mistaken.”

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“One of the reasons why I work so hard to represent the United States in international competition is to show the world that this country has morals and values, that it’s not all of the bad things that we’re known for,” Wolfe told Fox. “I take a stand against fascism because I care about this country and I’m not going to let it fall into the hands of fascists after so many people have fought and sacrificed to prevent fascism from taking hold abroad.”

The Facebook post has since been deleted, Fox reported.

Wolfe said on Instagram in June that she qualified as an alternate for the U.S. BMX Freestyle team. (RELATED: Mother, Daughter Athlete Duo Fight Against Biological Males In Women’s Sports In Hawaii)

The 28-year-old Florida native started BMX racing at the age of 6 and began competing in 2014, according to Wolfe’s bio page.

New Zealand weightlifter Laurel Hubbard on Monday became the first openly transgender athlete to be selected to compete in the Olympics this summer.

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