Shaun White was sued for sexual harassment. NBC would rather not talk about it.


White’s failure to address a sexual harassment lawsuit speaks to a larger Olympics issue.

When Shaun White won his third Olympic gold medal at the Pyeongchang Games on February 13 after completing a gravity-defying performance on the halfpipe, the NBC announcers were ready.

“The return of the king in the men’s halfpipe!” one crowed, as an ecstatic White pumped his fists in triumph. “White is the new gold!”

This moment, as both White and NBC will tell you at a moment’s notice, was a long time in the making. After White dominated the sport with two back-to-back gold medals in the 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympics, he faltered in 2014, coming in a disappointing fourth place. In the fall of 2017, he crashed into the halfpipe on a practice run in New Zealand, eventually requiring 62 stitches in his face just months before he was set to return to the Olympics. So in 2018, 12 years after he first hit the Olympics slopes with his signature tomato red hair flying through the frigid air, a more subdued and determined 31-year-old White took to the slopes with a purpose: to reclaim the gold medal he had let slip through his fingers four years ago.

But there is another aspect of White’s journey back to the Olympics podium that he’s not exactly keen to acknowledge.

In 2016, White’s former bandmate Lena Zawaideh sued him for wrongful termination and sexual harassment. The suit alleged that White had “repeatedly sexually harassed her and forced his authoritarian management style on her for over seven years,” leading to her abrupt dismissal from the band in 2014 without the payment she was owed. Zawaideh said that White forced her to watch sexually explicit videos against her wishes, texted and spoke degrading comments to her, and “at one …read more

Source:: Vox – All

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