The 2018 Winter Olympics are underway in Pyeongchang, South Korea, and the frosty conditions have called for new measures for participating athletes. This year, a whopping 110,000 condoms will be distributed, higher than any other Winter Games in the history of the Olympics. Though the generosity is certainly beneficial for sexually active athletes, not everyone seems to be impressed with the selection.
Openly-gay U.S. Olympic figure skater Adam Rippon took to Instagram to express his disappointment over an apparently underwhelming selection of condoms. “I thought maybe they’d have like Olympic rings on them or they’d all be different colours, but, no. It’s all a myth.” Rippon voiced his opinion to his 143,000 followers over the “condom drama”, letting his disappointment be known publicly. According to the Huffington Post, if divided between the 2,925 participating athletes, it works out to 37 condoms each. The Korea Biomedical Review reports that South Korean condom maker Convenience had donated 100,000 condoms, totalling over $93,000, with the Korean Association For Aids Prevention adding an extra 10,000 for the athletes.
Although he proclaimed his dismay, Rippon was quick to turn to a positive outlook on the matter, admitting “It’s alright. Life isn’t always what it seems and sometimes condoms are generic.” In his Instagram story, Adam had said that he had waited “years” to get to the Olympics and “find out what all of the condom drama is about” although he admits he wasn’t entirely sure what he was expecting. Despite the revelation, he insists he isn’t upset, but simply disappointed.
According to The Washington Post, Adam has become a fan favourite already at this year’s Olympics, with his openness to share his thoughts and express himself. The 28-year-old has already won a bronze medal in his first Olympic singles competition, and joked to one of his friends, saying “I’m America’s sweetheart.” He thinks that what people are “latching on to” about him, is that he’s different. “I’m just trying to share who I am, my personality,” he said, and in this day and age, that is something widely respected and appreciated by society.
In the weeks leading up to the Olympics, Rippon had already made headlines over the controversy surrounding Vice President Mike Pence. According to Rolling Stone, the star figure skater was asked about his opinion on Mike Pence leading the U.S delegation at the opening ceremonies, to which he said: “You mean Mike Pence, the same Mike Pence that funded gay conversion therapy?” The Vice President’s office decided to reach out to Rippon and invite him for a one-on-one chat with Pence, which he declined, although the VP’s communication director denies any such invitation. Despite the buzz surrounding his comments, Adam has insisted on remaining focused on the sport.
Though he’s received support for his bold approach, Rippon has heard a lot of people suggesting that he tones it down, however, he insists that he can’t and won’t. “I’m being me and I’m being myself and I’d be doing myself an injustice and I’d be doing an injustice to those kids who don’t feel like they’re comfortable to be themselves.” Adam has used the Olympics as a platform to become a role model to others who struggle with their identity and are looking for confidence.
Despite the looming controversy that has surrounded Adam Rippon, he has persevered and silenced all of his doubters, eternally recognized as an Olympic medalist now. He has become one of the prominent voices of Olympic athletes this year, and a shining example of being proud of who you are, and expressing how you feel. Continuing his courageous ways, Adam took to Twitter to announce publicly “To all those who tweet at me saying they ‘hope I fail,’ I have failed many many times in my life,” he wrote. “But more importantly, I’ve learned from every setback, proudly own up to my mistakes, grown from disappointments, and now I’m a glamazon b*tch ready for the runway.” Hats go off to Adam, as he continues to make waves in the modern world of sports.
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