Simone Biles, one of the greatest athletes of all time, turned 23 years old this Saturday, March 14. On Instagram, Biles shared a sweet snap with fans saying she was excited and “ready for my Jordan year!”
To honor the Olympian, USA Gymnastics also sent a tweet to the star (though they tagged the wrong account) saying, “HAPPY BIRTHDAY to the most decorated gymnast of all time, @simonebiles! We know you will only continue to amaze us and make history!”
However, Biles wasn’t amused by the tribute from the organization that recently offered a settlement to athletes who have sued the organization over sexual abuse suffered at the hands of sports doctor Larry Nassar. In response to the tweet, Biles fired back with a birthday request. “How about you amaze me and do the right thing…have an independent investigation,” she tweeted.
This isn’t the first time Biles has requested the organization take further action. In February, following USA Gymnastics’ announcement that it will give $215 million to sexual assault survivors in an effort to settle lawsuits over its failure to protect them from Nassar, Biles tweeted that more needed to be done.
“Ugh at the airport,” she tweeted. “Heading to team camp. Still want answers from USAG and USOPC. Wish they BOTH wanted an independent investigation as much as the survivors & I do. Anxiety high. Hard not to think about everything that I DON’T WANT TO THINK ABOUT!!! “
As of Sunday, her tweet had more than 428,000 likes and fellow gymnastics Olympian Aly Raisman took to Instagram to praise her teammate. “This. Is. AWESOME. @simonebiles I love you!!!!” Raisman wrote in the caption of a screenshot of Biles’ tweet.
Biles, who shared that she was also abused by Nassar, isn’t alone in calling out the need for an independent investigation. In 2019, a bipartisan Senate committee announced at the conclusion of its own 18-month investigation that both USA Gymnastics and the U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee “knowingly concealed abuse by Larry Nassar, leading to the abuse of dozens of additional amateur athletes from summer 2015 to September 2016.” The report added, the organizations and Michigan State had a chance to stop Nassar and “failed to do so.”
Following the investigation’s rulings, and just prior to competing in the 2019 U.S. Gymnastics Championships, Biles told reporters, “They couldn’t do one damn job. You had one job. You literally had one job, and you couldn’t protect us. And it’s just really sad because every time I go to the doctor or training, I get worked on and I don’t want to get worked on, but my body hurts. I’m 22. At the end of the day, that’s my fifth rotation, and I have to go do therapy, but it’s just hard, and we try to work through it, but it’ll take some time.
She added, “I’m strong, I’ll get through it, but it’s hard.”