Olympic Athlete Expelled Over Racist Tweets

Racism can get you in a lot of trouble, sometimes even robbing you of a tremendous achievement. 

This is exactly what happened to triple jumper Voula Papachristou, who was kicked off Greece’s Olympic team Wednesday following her comments on Twitter making fun of Africans,  and expressing support for a far-right party.

The Greek Olympic committee confirmed Wednesday that Papachristou had been  “placed outside the Olympic team for statements contrary to the values and ideas of the Olympic movement.”

Papachristou has not responded to being kicked off the team.

Papachristou’s Twitter name, @papaxristoutj,  is filled with retweets and promotions of Golden Dawn, an extreme right wing party that emerged in the Greek Parliament in the national elections.

But it wasn’t her support for Golden Dawn that got her expelled from the Olympic team. It was her joke about the reported appearance of Nile-virus-carrying mosquitoes in Athens, Papachristou wrote: “With so many Africans in Greece, the West Nile mosquitoes will be getting home food!!!”. Her tweet prompted thousands of negative reactions on Twitter and elsewhere.

And Papachristou didn’t do herself any favors with largely dismissive reaction to the controversy: “That’s how I am. I laugh. I am not a CD to get stuck!!! And if I make mistakes, I don’t press the replay! I press Play and move on!!!”

She later responded with a much more earnest apology: “I would like to express my heartfelt apologies for the unfortunate and tasteless joke I published on my personal Twitter account. I am very sorry and ashamed for the negative responses I triggered, since I never wanted to offend anyone, or to encroach human rights.”

“My dream is connected to the Olympic Games and I could not possibly participate if I did not respect their values. Therefore, I could never believe in discrimination between human beings and races. I would like to apologize to all my friends and fellow athletes, who I may have insulted or shamed, the National Team, as well as the people and companies who support my athletic career. Finally, I would like to apologize to my coach and my family.”

Before her last tweet, a liberal Greek Party called the Democratic Left encouraged her expulsion from the Olympics, saying “Let her make any miserable ‘jokes’ on social media while watching the games on TV. She definitely cannot represent Greece in London.”

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33 Responses to Olympic Athlete Expelled Over Racist Tweets

  1. JC July 25, 2012 at 6:49 pm

    The reemergence of in your face racism has been awakened because of the United States. Racism has always been around but now it praised and rewarded so everyone who was in the “closet” about their racism is boldly stepping up and out. Yes, she said this online on Twitter the fact remains is it was vocal and heard around the world.

    Reply
  2. Basil July 25, 2012 at 7:17 pm

    Racism in Greece has nothing to do with racism in the United States. It has its own local prejudices.

    Reply
    • Ekanem July 26, 2012 at 4:10 am

      That has to be the silliest nonsense I’ve ever heard.

      Reply
  3. ormash July 25, 2012 at 7:18 pm

    It’s a case of chickens coming home to roost. Racisim is an insidious subconscious disease which bubbles to the surface when least expected. I don’t think she should apologize it makes her look like a hypocrite.

    Reply
  4. LarryJ July 25, 2012 at 7:24 pm

    Whatever and however, her foolish azz is off the team…!!!! What a losted opportunity…….

    Reply
  5. d-rhyme July 25, 2012 at 8:01 pm

    Is there really west nile in Greece? If yes then the africans there are home food. Can someone explain the racism in that? A statement of fact is racist? Please clarify for me. I’m missing some info I think.

    Reply
    • Scott July 25, 2012 at 8:15 pm

      Does any one believe that West Nile disease ONLY strikes the african based race and leaves other races alone? IF SO, please raise you hand, cause medical cases around the world do not support that belief!

      Reply
  6. Rex July 25, 2012 at 8:15 pm

    It was a harmless joke. I say she should be reinstated immediately.

    Reply
  7. Monique July 25, 2012 at 8:17 pm

    I love it when a plan comes together!

    Reply
  8. D. Harvey July 25, 2012 at 8:29 pm

    Black comics for as long as I can remember make color base joke and it hehe haha give me a break we have in the major cities of this country black kids killing each other for nothing. And we talk about this well she can kiss my ass and keep it moving this is a nonissue

    Reply
    • joceeco July 26, 2012 at 2:50 am

      She is not a white comedian, and white comedians make jokes about Black people also. Have you ever heard of Ralphie May and Gary Owen? She also supports a racist organization. The Black comedians who makes joke about whites, have never been found to support black organizations that are racist towards whites. Your comment is a non-factor in this conversation. Try your ignorance somewhere else you sad, sad little person!

      Reply
  9. shay July 25, 2012 at 8:34 pm

    “Out of the overflow of the heart the mouth speaks.”

    Reply
  10. Speakez July 25, 2012 at 8:35 pm

    Harmless comment? How ignorant can you be? It was a very harmful and hurtful comment and I commend the officials who stepped up to the plate to condemn this sort of behavior. It makes absolutely no difference which side of the sea, pond or desert you’re on, you are no better than the next person. People are so delusional, uneducated, ignorant and stupid.

    Reply
    • Nicholaus July 26, 2012 at 12:17 am

      @Speakez, don’t you think that stupidity/ignorance should be physically painful? Maybe “Rex” would get it then. Doubtful…..

      Reply
  11. CB July 25, 2012 at 8:49 pm

    @d-rhyme. Abraham Lincoln said it best. “Tis better to remail silent, and be thought a fool-than to speak and remove all doubt”. He was talking about you……

    Reply
    • Nicholaus July 26, 2012 at 12:13 am

      Well said CB, well said.

      Reply
  12. wheniwassifted July 25, 2012 at 11:05 pm

    Good decision!

    Reply
  13. elrancho2 July 25, 2012 at 11:54 pm

    So glad she was expelled. It’s bad enough that she’s a racist who tweets unfunny “jokes” but no way should she be allowed to compete at the Olympics.

    Reply
  14. d-rhyme July 26, 2012 at 12:56 am

    What? Did I miss something? The Nile. Is in africa. So if the west Nile is in Greece where Africans live then mosquitos eat blood. If they eat African blood in Greece that’s home food. I’m apparently missing something. Dot be mean. tell me please.

    Reply
  15. d-rhyme July 26, 2012 at 1:13 am

    Children now lead the world. Namecalling is against playground rules. GROW UP YOU FAIRIES IN FAIRY TALE LAND.

    Reply
  16. d-rhyme July 26, 2012 at 1:18 am

    This woman will waste four years of training because some children didn’t like someone for being human- expressing themselves. I am aghast.

    Reply
  17. MillieG1 July 26, 2012 at 1:26 am

    I was overwhelmed and astounished after reading the racist, sarcastic, ignorant, incorrect and insensitive comments Papachristou tweeted inclusive of the following statements (explanation). Papachristou candidly conveyed her feelings displaying total disregard for her fellow athletes, family, country, and friends showing no remorse or awareness until the subject matter was brought to her attention by the Olympic committee or whomever, then and only then did she offer an additional explanation and apology.. This is lady is not sorrowful for anything she previously stated pertaining to the Africans and West Nile disease, the only thing she’s sorrowful for is the attention and negative press she received. I’m elated she has been eliminated from the team based upon her inability to reframe vocalizing untrue and racially charged statment. Go Papachristou home Papachristou, and watch the London Games from the sofa like the majority of people from around the world.

    Reply
  18. therald July 26, 2012 at 2:26 am

    d-rhyme is a ranting idiot best ignored by right-thinking people.

    Reply
  19. WizardG July 26, 2012 at 2:44 am

    The idiotic things people say shouldn’t cause them to lose a important part of their whole future. There are worse things than that going on here and abroad. If Greece wants to cover up their negative racist machinations and make it seem that they aren’t as discriminating and abusive to others as they truly are, then this particular attack on a silly young lady is just the ticket. I can see the humor in what she said, but what she does is much more important. Will the young lady replacing her be more racist and vile with the ability to keep a low profile? The whole world is crashing and people are suffering and dying horrible deaths because the people in power are playing games with our lives and retarded people find time to celebrate the Olympics during a world war on terror! Or a world war to pillage and ravage the weakest nations! Let the silly girl compete you hypocrites!

    Reply
  20. Ishmar Muhammad July 26, 2012 at 6:55 am

    Instead of Making Racist Rants She Should ask why are so Many of these Greek Men UnderCover Fagits Just like Those Italians/Romans! To all you Black Fags this is not our way of Life or Gods it is White & European!Most Greeks & Italians are Biracial because it was so many Homos in their Society so they turned to the Darkside lol You Crackers need to look at your Family tree,just look if you shake your Family Tree a Negro Might fall out lol Black is not a Color But the Essence from which all Color comes from! We will be here for ever Sha Whitey when ozone go y’all will be gone,Black Don’t Crack! I’m over 40 & still got all my Hair & teeth & my Wife is Happy she’s Aboriginal & I’m Black American she look like the Joker lol Kool Aid Smile lol

    Reply
  21. Peppa July 26, 2012 at 8:21 am

    I’m not going to respond to any of the stupid comments on here, because they come from either weak whack devil ridden racists, or TROLLS. And I don’t give relevance to either useless fools. This racist got what she deserved. And then to come and try to save her career afterwards, was just as lame as her racist comment. If she was sincerely sorry, her responses to the negative tweets would not have been such as it was. Only after she got notice that she may be kicked off the team, did her political tweet come into play. HER CAREER IS FINISHED, DONE, OVER WITH and ENDED.

    Racists don’t deserve anything good. They are the scum of the earth. They are cowards, weak and cancerous. They reek of evil and hate and the devil watches over them at night. Making sure they wake up ready to do his work. I can usually sense them as soon as I come into contact with them. They make me itch. I am ALARMINGLY ALLERGIC to those things. And I wish someone would find an Island to put them on, so they will finally be happy around each other and away from the rest of the God fearing and loving Human Beings. So good ridden Voula Papachristou, have fun watching the Olympics in your house. Your teammates will miss you dearly.
    And Thank You!!!!

    Reply
  22. whut July 26, 2012 at 9:17 am

    That picture is perfect. Trash belongs in the dirt.

    Reply
  23. d-rhyme July 26, 2012 at 4:44 pm

    I’m still waiting for clarification. Did she call someone the n word? Or something? It must be an alliance of gays in Greece and elsewhhere to try and show how non racist the gays are. Its a “PDA” for PEOPLE OF COLOR. Only for show. PALEEEEZ. get my black azz out of poverty. Out of unjust prison. Give me back my culture and self respect. I AM NOT STUPID SO DONT PANDER TO ME WITH NONSENSE. what she said Is not gonna hurt me more than institutional racism. Until you homosexuals do something tangible you are looking real stupid and self serving only.

    Reply
  24. sherry July 26, 2012 at 5:14 pm

    d-rhyme, I don’t know if I should crack up laughing at you or shake my head at you……..either way, unbelievable!

    Reply
  25. sherry July 26, 2012 at 5:17 pm

    d-rhyme….2 wrongs don’t make a right. Racism is wrong. Period. When caught…it should be dealt with…and it was!

    Reply
  26. aslee July 26, 2012 at 5:24 pm

    D-Rhyme…..you are right in a sense that it wont hurt you as far as the comment is concerned. The fact of the matter is that people should learn to keep their mouths shut when they are not saying anything productive. Sure it was a comment but it was one better left unsaid. Sure racism is alive & well but not everyone wants to deal with the fallout. Not everyone is racist & with Greece needing financial assistance of other countries rigjt now, expelling her is what needed to be done. She needs to learn when to speak & when to shut her mouth. Personally I really dont care because I dont give energy to alot of comments. Once a person shows their true colors then I dont support them. This is good for her….she will be fine….she was bold enough to say & think it was funny….now except the consequences with the same Coke & a smile.

    Reply
  27. d-rhyme July 27, 2012 at 10:39 am

    Racism does not come from mouths. Talk is just that. That white chick has no power to harm me physically or financially. She is a pawn or scapegoat only for some political statement. Trying to destroy free speech cause you can’t argue your point. That is bullying tyranny.

    Reply
  28. Frank "Pale" Talk July 30, 2012 at 4:17 pm

    Sensitive Non-whites need to wake-up and take pride in seeing how the people who have ALL they have from your land (Father/Mother Afrika), have to always recognize your Pigmentation in their remarks. It’s all a result of their reproductive insecurity/”Behavioral System for Survival” mentality; it really makes people without Melanin, knowing they’re grafted and temporary, make such intentionally and inferior skinned statements. Pray for them. They won’t around much longer.

    Reply

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