Winter Olympics 2018: Twitter Drags Shaun White For Dragging Flag Through Snow


Shaun White won gold Wednesday, but he lost the respect of many who love the red, white and blue.

White's poor handling of an American flag immediately after he claimed his third men's halfpipe snowboarding title . . .

Congrats @shaunwhite - Now can you stop dragging our flag on the ground and stepping on it, please? Show some respect.

— Nathan (@America4Israel) February 14, 2018

. . . set off an avalanche of negative tweets, including the one above. A small (very small) sample:

Shaun White drags the flag on the ground and my husband and I are cringingggggg.

— Jenna Hatfield (@JennaHatfield) February 14, 2018

Can @shaunwhite be any more disrespectful to the flag he wins the gold and is given the flag he drags it on the snow like Linus @ Charlie Brown.The flag that myself and many other veterans fought to defend.He was privileged to represent the US @ the Olympics not act like a P.O.S.

— Eric Metz (@Cpr_guruEric) February 14, 2018

Shaun White won gold in half pipe, then drags the flag on the ground. Killed the moment.

— borisdblade (@bladez_edge) February 14, 2018

Watched Shaun White when gold for the United States and then drags the American flag on the ground not very patriotic

— Tony Wills (@TonyWills17) February 14, 2018

I love how Shaun White wins a gold medal in the Olympics and almost immediately drags the flag across the ground and steps all over it!!!! 😡😡😡

— Bad Luck Brydon (@BrydonGill) February 14, 2018

So I'm in the middle of my celebration for Olympian Shaun White, then he does the unthinkable....


— D'Adran Bryant, MBA (@Dbryantgroup) February 14, 2018

What kind of American drags our flag on the ground!! #shameful #idiot @shaunwhite

— Ruth Canfield (@rcanfield4) February 14, 2018

The U.S. Flag Code is clear. From Section 176(b):

"The flag should never touch anything beneath it, such as the ground, the floor, water, or merchandise." Section 176(k) says when a flag is "no longer a fitting emblem for display, (it) should be destroyed in a dignified way, preferably by burning."

MORE: IOC allows women's goalies to keep Statue of Liberty on mask

The Code lists other prohibitions, too, such as those against holding the flag horizontally (looking at you, NFL) or using it as apparel (looking at you, clothiers). In other words, a lot of things people do with the flag should make other people angry a lot of the time.

A small (very small) minority of tweeters gave White a pass, citing his emotions over winning a gold medal. That group will not win this debate, based on the imbalance in the responses.

White's victory was already tainted in many Americans' minds after stories of alleged sexual harassment and misconduct by White resurfaced this week. (

UPDATE: Per ESPN's Julie Foudy, White declined to answer a question about the allegations during his post-competition press conference, calling them "gossip.") The flag flap will further obscure his athletic achievement.

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