AOC calls Olympic athlete suspension for marijuana ‘racist and colonial’

New York Democrat worked with House Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties to formally ask U.S. antidoping officials to end suspension.
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Democratic Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez.
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez Washington, DC, April 15, 2021.
(SAUL LOEB/AFP via Getty Images)

Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on Friday demanded that the suspension of U.S. track champion Sha’Carri Richardson for marijuana use be rescinded, saying the Olympic policy that led to her one-month punishment was “an instrument of racist and colonial policy.”

The New York Democrat said she had worked with the House Subcommittee on Civil Rights and Civil Liberties to formally ask U.S. antidoping officials to end Richardson's suspension.

“Their decision lacks any scientific basis. It's rooted solely in the systemic racism that's long driven anti-marijuana laws,” Ocasio-Cortez tweeted.

“The criminalization and banning of cannabis is an instrument of racist and colonial policy,” she said. “The IOC should reconsider its suspension of Ms. Richardson and any athletes penalized for cannabis use. This ruling along w/ IOC denial of swim caps for natural hair is deeply troubling.”