Gay Olympians' Message to VP Pence: 'Eat Your Heart Out'

Instagram post from 2 openly gay athletes references the vice president, #TeamUSGay
By Jenn Gidman,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 10, 2018 8:35 AM CST
In this Jan. 4, 2018, file photo, Adam Rippon performs during the men's short program at the US Figure Skating Championships in San Jose, Calif.   (AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez, File)

(Newser) – The first two openly gay males to compete in the Winter Olympics posed for a celebratory photo after the Games officially kicked off, though the caption had an eyebrow-raising ending. Freeskier Gus Kenworthy posted the pic of himself and figure skater Adam Rippon on Instagram Friday, along with the message: "The #OpeningCeremony is a wrap and the 2018 Winter Olympic Gaymes are officially under way! I feel incredibly honored to be here in Korea competing for the US and I'm so proud to be representing the LGBTQ community alongside this amazing guy!" Then, followed by the hashtags #TeamUSA and #TeamUSGay: "Eat your heart out, Pence." It was directed toward Vice President Mike Pence, who the Hill explains has been engaged in a recent back-and-forth of sorts with Rippon.

Rippon, 28, has long been vocal about his distaste for Pence, who he says doesn't support LGBT rights and shouldn't have been picked to lead the US Olympics delegation. In January, he said he wouldn't "go out of my way" to meet Pence at the Olympics, as he says Pence is someone who "not only [shows] that they aren't a friend of a gay person but that they think that they're sick," per USA Today. It was reported earlier this week Pence did ask for a meeting with Rippon, and that Rippon "refused," which both parties denied. Pence called it "fake news" on Twitter, while Rippon's mom says her son just didn't want the distraction while he was competing in the Games, per the Hill. That backs up what Rippon told USA Today. "After I'm finished competing, there might be a possibility to have an open conversation," he noted. (Smithsonian.com offers a short history on openly gay Olympians.)

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