7 things that Megan Rapinoe said that made us fall more in love with her
Megan Rapinoe made headlines on and off the pitch during the World Cup in France where she helped lead the U.S. Women’s National soccer team to its second consecutive championship while at the same time becoming the target of a President Trump Twitter barrage.
All in a day’s work for the out and proud athlete who sealed the World Cup title with a kiss from her girlfriend, WNBA star Sue Bird, who watched from the stands as Rapinoe and the U.S. team beat Netherlands 2-0 in the championship match.
There was no love lost between Rapinoe and Trump. She drew POTUS’ ire after a video interview she did in June with soccer news outlet Eight by Eight went viral. The 34-year-old forward and co-captain of the team was asked about visiting the White House should the team take home the title, bringing us to the first thing she said that made us love her more.
1 // “I’m not going to the fucking White House,” she said with a scoff.
— Eight by Eight (@8by8mag) June 25, 2019
Trump could not resist responding to Rapinoe’s comments by tweeting “Megan should WIN before she TALKS!” and also tweeting, “Megan should never disrespect our Country, the White House, or our Flag, especially since so much has been done for her & the team.”
Rapinoe stood by her comments following Trump’s tweets. And Bird was spurred to write about her girlfriend who dyed her hair pink to play soccer on the world stage in a lengthy essay for The Players Tribune titled, “So the President F*cking Hates My Girlfriend.”
Besides backing up her words on the soccer field, Rapinoe is also well-known for being an outspoken activist off the field.
In 2016, she was one of the first white athletes to kneel during the National Anthem to support NFL player Colin Kaepernick’s protest of police brutality.
“Being a gay American, I know what it means to look at the flag and not have it protect all of your liberties,” Rapinoe told American Soccer Now at the time.
After the soccer federation ordered all players to stand during the National Anthem, Rapinoe has refused to sing the song or put her hand over her heart. When asked at the World Cup if she was anti-American due to these choices, Rapinoe responded with another quote that made us love her more.
2 // “I think that I’m particularly, uniquely and very deeply American. If we want to talk about the ideals that we stand for, the song and the anthem, and what we were founded on, I think I’m extremely American.”
As a gay American, Rapinoe also advocates for LGBTQ equality and visibility.
After defeating France 2-1 at the World Cup at the end of June to move to the semifinals, Rapinoe was asked about playing during Pride Month—and her answer made us love her more.
3 // “Go gays!” she said, according to the Guardian.
“You can’t win a championship without gays on your team—it’s never been done before, ever. That’s science, right there!”
Rapinoe took to Twitter after the championship game to reiterate her “gay science” claim by posting a picture of her and two other openly gay players, Ashlyn Harris and Ali Krieger, kissing their hardware.
4 // “We already discussed this. Science is science. Gays rule,” Rapinoe said.
— Megan Rapinoe (@mPinoe) July 7, 2019
And again, showing us how we can love her even more.
While Rapinoe likes to shine in the spotlight, she makes sure to always celebrate and recognize her teammates when talking about their victories and success. After winning the World Cup, she told reporters being part of the team “is just an incredible feeling. It’s something very special.”
5 // “I feel this team is in the midst of changing the world around us as we live,” she said.
Being part of something that is changing the world is just one more reason to love Rapinoe even more.
One part of changing the world is demanding the world see women soccer players as good as men and deserving of equal pay. Rapinoe is one of 28 U.S. Women National team players suing U.S. Soccer for gender discrimination and her willingness to speak out on this issue makes us love her even more, too.
6 // “Everyone is kind of asking what’s next and what we want to come of all of this. It’s to stop having the conversation about equal pay and are we worth it and should we and the investment piece. What are we going to do about it?” Rapinoe said, according to ESPN.
“It’s time to sit down with everyone and really get to work.”
Perhaps Rapinoe will take some a few days off after the whirlwind that is the World Cup. Spending time with her girlfriend appears to be a priority, and is of course another reason why we love her.
Rapinoe posted to her Instagram a picture of her hugging Bird close, both with huge grins.
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A post shared by Megan Rapinoe (@mrapinoe) on
7 // “I’m so in love with you. Thank you baby.” Rapinoe says.
featured image via Instagram.com/mrapinoe