Out figure skater Adam Rippon and skier
Gus Kenworthy are among the Olympians boycotting Team USA's White
House visit on Friday in protest of President Donald Trump.
Also protesting is skier Lindsey Vonn,
“All US Olympians and Paralympics are
invited to visit the White House and meet the President after the
Games,” Kenworthy messaged on Twitter. “Today is this year's
visit and USOC spokesperson says he's never seen so many athletes
turn down their invites. The resistance is real.”
Rippon told USA Today that while
he was busy performing in a “Stars on Ice” show in Pittsburgh on
Friday, he had not planned on going to the White House to meet the
“It's a convenient out,” he said.
“I was not going or planning on going [to the White House] anyway.
… It's important for me to align myself with those people who have
the same ideals that I have.”
In January, Rippon, the first openly
gay American to medal at the Winter Olympics in South Korea, told the
BBC that he would not feel welcome at the White House.
“I won't go to the White House. And
I won't go because I don't think somebody like me would be welcome
there,” Rippon said. “I know what it's like to go into a room
and feel like you're not wanted there.”
Kenworthy, who came out gay after
taking home a silver medal in the 2014 Sochi Games, told TIME
in December that he would refuse an invitation to the White House.
“I have no interest in faking support,” he said at the time.
He also criticized Trump for his
attempt to bar transgender people from serving in the military.
“That is just a direct attack on the
LGBT community,” he said. “It shows more courage to leave the
house as a trans person than Trump has ever had to show.”