There goes the racist stereotype that black people can’t swim.
20-year-old Simone Manuel won a gold medal in the 100-meter freestyle swimming event at the Rio Olympic Games on Thursday.
Tears streamed down her face as the 5-foot-11 Houston native realized she tied 16-year-old Canadian Penny Oleksiak to share gold medals — a rarity in Olympic sports..
After a joyous celebration with friends, Manuel considered the weight of being the first black female swimmer to win an Olympic gold medal.
“I’m super glad with the fact that I can be an inspiration to others and hopefully diversify the sport. But, at the same time, I would like there to be a day where there are more of us and it’s not ‘Simone, the black swimmer.’”
She added: “This medal is not just for me, it’s for some of the African-Americans who have been before me and been inspirations”.
Manuel also spoke on the current wave of police shootings of unarmed black males in America, that has become President Obama’s shameful legacy.
“It means a lot, especially with what is going on in the world today, some of the issues of police brutality,” Manuel said. “This win hopefully brings hope and change to some of the issues that are going on. My color just comes with the territory.”