Often times, it’s better to not press “send” on a tweet. This was one of those times.
NBC announcer Al Trautwig said on Monday that he regrets a tweet he sent out regarding the adoptive mother and father of Simone Biles, one of the biggest stars on the U.S. gymnastics team during the 2016 Rio Olympics.
Trautwig did not refer to Ron and Nellie Biles as Simone’s parents in a tweet. NBC would have Trautwig delete the tweet after backlash. Trautwig backtracked on Monday, per the Associated Press:
“To set the record straight, Ron and Nellie are Simone’s parents.”
The details of the tweet, from the Associated Press:
A woman on Twitter then urged Trautwig to stop calling Ron and Nellie her grandfather and his wife. “They are her parents,” she wrote. But Trautwig replied in his since-deleted tweet: “They may be mom and dad but they are NOT her parents.”
That seems like a very odd fight for somebody to pick, and just wrong. That’s exactly how Chuck Johnson, president and CEO of the National Council for Adoption, described it to the Associated Press:
“If they are parenting her — that’s what a parent does — don’t diminish the role by calling them something other than her parents. Some of us would find that offensive.”
It seems here NBC took the appropriate actions at the very minimum. To diminish the care that somebody took for a child in their upbringing by trying to say that they aren’t the parents is irresponsible, and downright silly. The Olympics is a global platform, and some of the sacrifices parents played in getting their kids there are greater than most could even comprehend.