In early July, the Sports Cannabis community was dealt a massive blow when Sha’Carri Richardson was suspended from the Olympic Team for testing positive for cannabis. Despite ending all olympics dreams, her sports cannabis journey has just started. With an enormous outpouring of support from athletes, artists and companies, Sha’Carri Richardson has officially become the new face for cannabis athletes.
An absolute legend on & off the track, Sha’Carri Richardson was suspended for one month from the Olympic team for testing positive for THC. Richardson’s Olympic trial results were disqualified and subsequently she was not allowed to participate at the Tokyo Olympics.
Sha’Carri Richardson appeared on NBC Today releasing a statement to her fans, the sports cannabis community and fellow teammates;
“I just want to take responsibility for my actions, I know what I did, I know what I’m supposed to do, I’m allowed not to do and I still made that decision. I’m not making an excuse or looking for any empathy in my case.“-Sha-Carri Richardson
This was not the first time an athlete has been penalized for THC use, Professional Snowboarder Ross Rebagliati tested positive for Cannabis after winning Gold at the Nagano Olympics in 1998, causing an uproar of controversy.
Despite the world shifting, professional sporting leagues adopting new policy and pledging funds toward the research of cannabis, USADA remains a slow adopter of the plant.
USADA announced Friday July 02, the suspension of Sha’Carri Richardson after testing positive. Sha’Carri has appeared on a handful of outlets taking responsibility for her actions and pledging to come back stronger.
“Everything I do comes from me naturally. No steroid(s). No anything. This incident was about marijuana. After my sanctions are up, I’ll be back and able to compete and every single time I step on the track I’ll be ready to compete for whatever anti-doping agency to come and get what it is that they need.”-Sha Carri Richardson
A Movement of Support
The trend towards normalizing Cannabis is not specific to one country. Cannabis Athletes around the world are taking part in a global movement to end prohibition and voice support for Sha’Carri Richardson.
Nike, a company built on being a disruptive force within athletics, stands by Sha’ Carri Richardson. Nike and Sha’Carri Richardson have had a contract dating back to 2019 and they will continue to sponsor her going forward. Shortly after she appeared on NBC Today, Nike issued the following statement;
“We appreciate Sha’Carri’s honesty and accountability and will continue to support her through this time.”-Nike
Kanye West & Beats Studio Buds
Late Tuesday night, July 20, 2021 the internet was sent into a frenzy as the new Kanye West x Beats x Sha’Carri Richardson Ad surfaced. Kanye West is gearing up for his new album release “Donda”, teasing fans around the world with a short commercial featuring Sha’Carri Richardson preparing for a race with Ye’s new track “no child left behind”.
Their latest collaboration leaves fans with one simple and powerful message, “Live Your Truth”.
Retired Pro MMA Fighter Ian McCall is a cannabis advocate and entrepreneur fighting to destigmatize the plant. Ian made waves in the UFC, competing in the Flyweight and Bantamweight divisions as well as the Ultimate Fighting Championship, Rizin Fighting Federation, and was the former TPF Flyweight Champion.
In recent years, Ian has played an instrumental advocating and pushing cannabis to the forefront within the UFC. We connected with Ian to get his thoughts on Sha’Carri Richardon’s movement;
“It’s a true injustice in this day and age. When we know how helpful this medicine can be for people of all walks of life. If we want these athletes to perform at their best we need them to have access to healthy natural ways to recover.”-Ian McCall
Ross Rebagliati, known as the godfather of cannabis, made waves across the globe when he tested positive for THC after a GOLD Medal Win at the Winter Nagano Olympics. Despite dealing with public scrutiny, he’s continued to persevere advocating for the plant, spreading education and bringing unique offerings to the community. Ross connected with Sports Cannabis to share his support for Sha’Carri Richardson;
“Sha’Carri is my new hero! Looking forward to supporting her as the role model she really is. Bad rules are designed to be broken. Think about it.”-Ross Rebagliati
Learn more about Ross Rebagliati’s cannabis journey today :
Pro Rugby Player, CBD Certified Educator and Athlete Ambassador, Anna Symonds has played a pivotal role in leading the sports cannabis charge. Today, Anna uses her platforms to focus on research, create awareness and push for transparency in an effort to move cannabis forward. Anna Symonds shared her thoughts on the recent injustice Sha’Carri Richardson endured;
“It’s heart wrenching to see this electric young star be stripped of this singular opportunity. Cannabis doesn’t meet WADA’s own criteria for banned substance, and it simple shouldn’t be banned or tested for at all.”-Anna Symonds
Learn more about Anna Symond’s Cannabis journey today :
Since retiring, NBA Legend Al Harrington has focused his efforts on becoming an entrepreneur in the Cannabis Industry, bringing to life a host of brands, companies and initiatives. The most notable endeavor, Viola Brands – a company named after this grandmother who suffered from glaucoma as well as diabetes and eventually found significant relief after implementing cannabis into her life. Al Harrington sat down with basketballnews.com to share his thoughts on Sha’Carri Richardson and whether he believes Cannabis is a performance enhancing drug;
“I think that what this opportunity has done has been able to shine a light on rules being outdated and right, rules being silly. You know, when we think about the Olympics and different things like that, you know, things that are on those ban lists are usually performance enhancement drugs or whatever you want to call supplements or whatever. And I think that, you know, over time, you know, the cannabis plant has been stigmatized in so many different ways, but performance enhancement has never been one of them.”-Al Harrington | basketballnews.com
Retired CFL Legend and son of Reggae Artist Bob Marley, Rohan Marley is advocating for cannabis and creating timely offerings for the industry. Early in his athletic career, Rohan was a linebacker for the University of Miami, where he played alongside Dwayne Johnson, Warren Sapp and Ray Lewis. After a historic season with the Hurricanes, Rohan moved onto the CFL and joined the Ottawa Rough Riders.
Today Rohan has created Lion Order Cannabis, a new cannabis company focused on bringing innovative products to consumers. With a push for education, awareness and transparency, Rohan voiced his thoughts in an effort to amplify Sha’Carri Richardson’s movement;
“We can’t keep fighting a plant created for the use of man.”-Rohan Marley
Let’s be clear, this is not the last that we’ve seen of Sha’Carri Richardson. Instead this is just the beginning of her Cannabis movement and it’s our chance to stand up and support her.
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