Ryan Lochte Suspension: Swimmer Receives 10-Month Punishment, But Is It Enough?
Ryan Lochte’s suspension from swimming is the latest headline about the athlete, who is now banned from swimming competition for 10 months after embellishing a story about being robbed by men posing as Brazilian police officers during the Olympics.
According to CBS Sports, the United States Olympic Committee and USA Swimming both agreed that Lochte should be suspended for 10 months from the sport. The three athletes who initially supported his account of the incident, Gunnar Bentz, Jack Conger, and Jimmy Feigen, were given four-month suspensions.
Along with the suspension, Lochte has to give up the $100,000 that accompanied his Olympic gold medal, as well as all funding from the Committee and USA Swimming. He’s banned from the 2017 World Championship in Budapest and all Olympic training centers.
— MSN (@MSN) September 8, 2016
In addition to Lochte’s suspension, he isn’t allowed to visit the White House alongside Team USA, and he has to perform 20 hours of community service.
Immediately following the news that Ryan Lochte embellished the story about being robbed at gunpoint in Rio, all of his sponsors decided not to renew his contracts, as The Inquisitr previously reported.
Yet, with all of the benefits Lochte has lost, he’s still been cast in the newest season of Dancing with the Stars.
The argument can be made that his addition to the cast was planned way before his embarrassing behavior at the Olympics this summer, but is being thrust back into the spotlight on one of the country’s most popular reality shows fair for someone who made such bad decisions?
— Katie Love (@KatieLoveSocial) September 8, 2016
Some would say that Ryan Lochte was given a mere slap on the wrist, even after being formally charged by Brazilian authorities.
He’s had his fair share of critics throughout the entire saga, yes, but Lochte was initially defended by an Olympic spokesperson, who claimed he and his fellow athletes were just “kids,” according to Business Insider.
“No apologies from [Lochte] or other athletes are needed. We have to understand that these kids came here to have fun. Let’s give these kids a break. Sometimes you make decisions that you later regret. They had fun, they made a mistake, life goes on,” spokesman Mario Andrada said in August after security video surfaced of the incident.
Ryan Lochte is 32 years old. There’s no excuse for doing what he did, and he’s surely not a child.
Meanwhile, an athlete like Colin Kaepernick, who used his platform to bring awareness to the Black Lives Matter movement and the lost lives it stands for, is vilified for exercising his right to stay seated during the national anthem. Veterans actually had to take a stand with Kaepernick in the middle of the outrage, insisting that they entered the armed forces to fight for the freedom Kaepernick was exercising.
There’s a glaring disparity there. Lochte is accused by the Brazilian police of committing a crime. He should’ve dealt with a whole lot more backlash than he actually did.
Rumor has it that Lochte is hoping that starring on DWTS will make America forget that he embarrassed the national team while in Brazil.
“I’m excited for, not only myself, but everyone else to forget about what happened and to move forward. I think that’s what the biggest thing is – what we’re gonna do is just move forward and show off my dancing skills,” Lochte told People magazine when the cast was revealed on Good Morning America.
His partner in the competition, Cheryl Burke, said something similar when asked about working with Lochte after his Rio debacle.
— People (@people) September 1, 2016
“I think Dancing with the Stars is all about redemption. And I think everyone should give him that chance… I think he’s really hit a low point in his life and he really wants to move on from it… Cha cha it off, you know?” Burke told Extra, according to People.
Was Ryan Lochte’s suspension too lenient? Too extreme? As some have pointed out, his teammate Michael Phelps only received a six-month suspension after his second DUI.
What do you think Lochte deserves in this situation?
[Photo by Michael Sohn/AP Images]