What did U.S. athletics legend Allyson Felix say about Roe vs Wade decision?
The American athletics icon has never backed away from a fight when it comes to women’s issues and rightly so, but this time she could only express sorrow.
Though she won’t be competing in any individual events at this year’s World Championships, Allyson Felix, the most decorated athlete in U.S. track and field history definitely made her presence felt this weekend with her opinion about Roe vs Wade.
U.S. Athletics legend Allyson Felix fails to qualify
It wasn’t Allyson Felix’s best moment on Saturday. The American athletics icon finished sixth in the 400-meter final at the USA Track & Field Championships at Hayward Field. With that Felix who ran in lane 9 and posted a below par time of 51.24 seconds, failed to qualify for an individual event at the World Championships. Felix undoubtedly now turn her attention to training as a relay runner for the team event at the big event. Incidentally, these will be the first World Championships - starting on July 15 in Eugene, Oregon - that will be held on American soil.
When asked if she was disappointed about her failure to qualify individually, the seven time Olympic gold medalist actually laughed. “Honestly, no. The 400 is hard for me, it’s not my natural passion. It’s always been something I’ve challenged myself with.” To be fair, Felix who has had an incredible career lasting some 19 years is not short on medals or recognition. In what will most likely be her last season, the legend from Los Angeles who will celebrate her 37th birthday in November said after the 400 semifinal on Friday that she felt “a lot of gratitude” in her final tour.
Allyson Felix’s opinion on the overturning of Roe vs Wade
With the major news of the Supreme Court’s decision on Roe vs Wade breaking on Friday morning, Felix was all to aware of what was happening in her country as she prepared for the 400 meter semifinals that day. A vocal advocate across her career for women’s rights and equal opportunity, Felix admitted that she “knew what was going on, obviously. I felt it all around me. ...I think any time women’s rights get taken away, it’s a sad day,” Felix said before adding that she’d been thinking about “the sisterhood” a lot the last couple days. I’ll always fight for women, always fight for them to have the ability to make their own decisions and that’s something I always stand behind.”
This isn’t Allyson Felix’s ‘first rodeo’
No stranger to what women face in the professional environment, it was during a New York Times op-ed back in 2019 when Felix disclosed that Nike, her longtime sponsor at that time, had indicated to her that they would be paying her 70% less after she had a baby. Without hesitation Felix left Nike and since that time has been sponsored by Athleta. In addition she also started Saysh, a women’s shoe company. “More than anything, this season really showed me that I have no doubts about walking away,” Felix said. “There’s nothing that I have left to give. This season, for the first time, I felt like I didn’t have that fight in me, and that’s who I am. I knew when I felt that fading away, there was nothing to do but be grateful.” Looking ahead to the future Felix made it clear that her prime focus will be growing her new brand and continuing to fight for what matters.
“That’s my primary role,” she said. “That and advocating for causes I’m passionate about.”