Beyond Sports--Why Simone Biles Is the mutha fckin' GOAT

Simone Biles
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Simone Biles. Her star shines brighter than ever. Photo: Wikimedia Commons/Agencia Brasil Fotografias 

Gillian Glasco IG @glasco.gillian

[Commentary]

I woke up at 4:30am last Tuesday morning to watch Simone Biles return to the balance beam in real-time before media outlets started reporting the outcome before it was broadcast here in the states. It was beautiful to see her shine after so much adversity. The way she clutched her chest after her dismount said it all. 

Every time an event surrounding a public figure happens, it exposes where the greater public is in their consciousness and how invested we are in the great extremes and polarities of life. 

Simone Biles is the GOAT cuz she's the mutha fckin' GOAT. She is still, literally only in competition with herself. No one, STILL can do what she does. She has elevated the sport, created skills that others still can't do and won't attempt, and has already won all the awards and all the medals, at all levels. She has done it all, better than anyone. Period. 

We can all understand being disappointed, I was, in not being able to see her perform in all events at the Olympics this year. Because we all like to witness greatness. But the troubling thing is, that many people forget that we have to honor what allows someone like Simone to do what she does. Specifically in a sport that doesn't have teammates on the floor with you, balls, nets, rackets, clubs, bats, just your body. Literally just your body to fly into the air, tumble, swing, and balance in ways that defy gravity.  

The level Simone Biles performs at, requires full body and mental connection. Not to mention when you have pushed yourself to perform at such a high level, with great consistency, you are obviously keenly aware when something is off or not safe. And this don't have shit to do with not handling pressure well, but having a human body, and sometimes everything is not in your control and there can be a disconnect. 

And Simone Biles has absolutely earned the right to protect herself, her body, mind, and her life. Because to be clear, what Simone does, not only makes her the goat and her skill level is amazing, that skill level is only matched by how dangerous it. Most sports obviously have some level of danger and possibility of injury, but this young lady could lose her life if she does not feel wholly connected. Then, we would have a different headline to talk about, something like "The Tragedy of the GOAT" about how Simone gets paralyzed tryin' to prove something to y'all. No thanks.

Simone did not quit on anyone, not herself, and certainly not her teammates. She decided to pull out of the team competition because she didn't want to cost them a medal, knowing she wouldn't perform as she needed with the twisties. That is an integrity move. Ego would tell you to try to perform, even if you know something is off, because you are concerned about how you will come off to others and don't want people to judge the legitimacy of your choice and question your abilities. And she was willing to make the smart choice and take the heat. Nothing is more commendable than that. 

And speaking of ego, how folks can even fix their mouths to assert that she would dedicate her life to a sport, training, pushing her body and skill to the limit, making sacrifices, winning, winning, and winning again, just to come to the Olympics and "quit", is psychotic. How self-deluded do you have to be to think your disappointment/disapproval of Simone not performing is more important than her health or that she doesn't have the right to make that judgement call. No one wanted Simone Biles to perform well more than Simone Biles. So have some respect for an athlete that has already given so much and stop acting like this is an issue of just not "feeling like it". I swear, it just really shows how all people care about is being entertained, because the minute you show that you are human, folks are ready to pounce, like you ain't never been shit. This is a such a flaw in our society.

Simone Biles legacy is already set. It was already cemented before she showed up to Tokyo. And remains still. I'm proud of her for being open and forward and having the strength to make choices that were for her total betterment. Because, the truth is, when people only see value in how you can perform, or what you can do for them, not in who you are, they will throw you away or let you suffer, when you no longer satisfy them. And that isn't just for Simone, that's everyone. You still have to protect and sustain yourself, beyond the expectations and gaze put upon you. You have to live with you, for your whole life.

Man, I love Simone Biles for many reasons. But what's most important is that she loves herself. And I salute her greatestness just as I salute her humanity, integrity, leadership, courage, and strength. Thank you for it all. THE GOAT.