In case you hadn't heard, Simone Biles withdrew from some events at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics this week. While many were supportive of Biles prioritizing her mental health, not everyone has been so kind.
No sooner had the USA Gymnastics team announced Biles withdrawal from the final team event than Piers Morgan condemned the act as covering for simple mistakes.
Bullying successful women is a coping mechanism for a lot of mediocre men.— Ahmed Ali (@Ahmed Ali) 1627487191.0
Morgan shared his thoughts on Twitter and in a column for The Daily Mail.
*NEW COLUMN* Sorry Simone Biles, but there’s nothing heroic or brave about quitting because you’re not having ‘fun’… https://t.co/QmmNO77ft3— Piers Morgan (@Piers Morgan) 1627475821.0
This is from a man unable to withstand 30 secs of mild criticism from his weatherman before quitting. Kids need pe… https://t.co/qcsTIPdzIX— Brian Moore (@Brian Moore) 1627416472.0
Not coincidentally most of the criticism of Naomi Osaka and Simone Biles is from white men whose major physical ach… https://t.co/5HgR0QqgRF— Darlene (I am not your partisan) Strozut☔️ (@Darlene (I am not your partisan) Strozut☔️) 1627453371.0
In the column, Morgan explained his support of Biles being a confident and cocky athlete, but thinks her explanation as to why she stepped away from some Olympic events wasn't good enough.
It’s amazing that women get called “emotional” when I have never seen more men throwing tantrums about Simone Biles.— Chelsea Handler (@Chelsea Handler) 1627499255.0
Some of these soggy white men complaining about Simone Biles.... Like do they not know that she is probably stron… https://t.co/VKB99wjWxa— Karen Attiah (@Karen Attiah) 1627485268.0
In response to the portion of Biles' own statement about why she withdrew, saying she wasn't having fun and she feels she's doing too much to please other people, Morgan latched on to a criticism.
"Sorry, WHAT? You're not just at these Games for yourself, Simone."
"You are part of Team USA, representing the United States of America, and hundreds of millions of American people watching back home, not to mention all the sponsors who've paid huge sums to support you."
"And when you quit, you were performing as part of a gymnastics team, not yourself. It's also not supposed to just be about having fun."
Morgan's words were not taken kindly across the internet, who felt the opinion piece had gone too far.
piers morgan's entire career was built on attacking women more famous, athletic, accomplished, and beautiful than h… https://t.co/ytuOTZetNi— Erin And A Half Ryan (@Erin And A Half Ryan) 1627504722.0
It feels not only disingenuous, but misleading to not talk about race and, yes, especially when it’s a POC who is a… https://t.co/HM9gcik6Y4— Naveed Jamali (@Naveed Jamali) 1627557997.0
Piers Morgan weighs in.... https://t.co/E6ISbPymVO— Amy Siskind 🏳️🌈 (@Amy Siskind 🏳️🌈) 1627510903.0
And that’s putting it nicely, @piersmorgan because there are so many better suited words to use than “mediocre”. Tr… https://t.co/TqmQEKMxhj— Jean Grey (@Jean Grey) 1627524271.0
Morgan is an old hand when it comes to criticizing Black women.
He was noted for his mocking and criticisms against Meghan Markle, especially her claims of racism from some members of the royal family. More recently, he made fun of Naomi Osaka when she lit the Tokyo Olympic flame.
Morgan's opinion piece on Biles continued, saying at the World Championships in 2018, she didn't pull out of the competition after falling, the way she did at the Olympics.
She hardly needs a British gossip writer with a bad track record of racism and misogyny to approve.
Everyone judging @Simone_Biles doesnt know their foot from their asshole when it comes to being in her position.She… https://t.co/eKla8TGlrb— Ronda Rousey (@Ronda Rousey) 1627408362.0
Piers Morgan bullied #NaomiOsaka, he is now bullying #SimoneBiles and has been bullying #MeghanMarkle for 4 years.… https://t.co/cCkkaF340M— Julieth 🇨🇴 (@Julieth 🇨🇴) 1627442220.0
Not surprised to see this from the likes of @piersmorgan A person (I use that term lightly) that sits on his b… https://t.co/d15b0cvTej— Ed Asner (@Ed Asner) 1627482890.0
didn't realise it was possible to get a debilitating injury if you accidentally threw to an ad break 20 seconds ear… https://t.co/0V8ybDQAHH— alex kealy (@alex kealy) 1627516267.0
When she last spoke about Olympic events, Biles said she would take it one day at a time. She withdrew from the team event and the individual all-around event.
There are still four other Olympic artistic gymnastics events she may participate in, though one could hardly blame her if she chooses to withdraw entirely.