From the start and before we get started, we would like to state that we do not cave into mob violence, bullies, or hate speech from anyone, not to mention a small group of “elite” athletes that have not supported Vaulter Magazine or the community in years. Many of them have forgotten where they have come from and lost touch from the people that have supported them as they stood on the podium. People around this country have supported “Elite” athletes and are ashamed of what they read today, not because of what they support, but the actions they took (or didn’t take).
Timeline of events – We repost many posts from around the world daily, many times (too much for some). Last week, before practice in the afternoon, we completed our daily reposting of events on Instagram. When we do so, it carries over to Facebook, Twitter, and more. Rushing out the door, we went to practice and it lasted around four hours. Usually, it goes faster, but we picked up some dinner and finally made it home. We sat at the dinner table, ate our dinner late, and then we fired up Instagram.
I went ahead and reposted two more pending posts and then I noticed that there was some activity. My most recent post had a few vulgar comments about us on the girl’s post. I looked at it, deleted the comment on the girl’s post, and then blocked them. Then I scrolled down and saw the post from a club in Texas.
First, there was a comment about Trump and hatred towards the United States President, then a comment about the Blue Striped Flag (Which is a flag about supporting police), and then a post about us being racists and hate over a confederate type flag. ** Please note that no comments were deleted from that post, we deleted the whole post only** We reposted the post not seeing the flag, we saw a coach and happy athletes only. Right away we deleted the post. As Vaulter Magazine, we are not about hate, disrespect, classless acts, shaming, destroying lives, or demeaning anyone. Not to mention, faith, race, gender, color, or creed. I have fought in the Marine Corps for 20 years fighting for those freedoms mentioned above. We respect and care for all athletes, wanting no one left behind.
We are not from the cancel culture generation and do not bend a knee to their shameful demands as a mob. We all agree that racism is bad, but attacking, shaming, and convicting innocent people before the facts are stated is a damaging action to portray. Too bad that our society encourages “guilty until proven innocent”.
So, on this blog post, there are a few “Elite” athletes that have voiced their opinion, and most thought it was ok to shame us in front of the world by reposting a fellow athlete’s story post without obtaining any facts. One after another, asking for support to stop Vaulter Magazine, stop following Vaulter Magazine, calling us racists, and more.
Our club athletes see this stuff, not to mention our daughters, sons, friends, and others. I get it, this is the intention of these people. Recently, we had a master’s athlete in the U.S. from France or Italy friend request us and then post it in her language, trying to spread it around the world (just to send us a message of hate). This is not the only language that we have seen this, so they are actively trying to spread this hatred throughout the world. Where is all of this coming from, why would anyone that could care less about what we do, want such horrible things for a family-owned company. None of these people follow us or support our magazine.
The only “ELITE” that contacted us directly was our good friend Megan Clark. She was offended by the flag and apologized for tagging us in her story, she stated that she did not want all of this to blow up against us. Little does anyone know, Megan will be on the cover of our magazine next month.
Since February, before the Pandemic, we have known that Megan would be on the cover for October. The article was written months ago, and after all this, I asked her if she even wanted to be featured on the cover anymore. She stated “yes” and we will follow through like we always do. But one DEATH THREAT after another came in for us personally from anonymous accounts.
One person stated that they knew where we lived. Stated that they will be paying us a visit. As the death threats came in and “ELITE” athletes shaming us, I asked that the story be taken down via a second party request and thankfully, it was. Can you believe that these actions are causing death threats in the pole vault community? Not a single person from our office called an elite or spoke with one other than Megan.
But that wasn’t enough, it is an act of vengeance and they want us to bend a knee, make a statement, and beg for forgiveness. The ring leader stated that all we had to do is make a statement and it would all go away. Seems to be the sentiment of modern-day. Go read their blogs and posts, some of you will agree, some of you will not, but you can decide for yourself. I feel humbled that an Olympic Silver Medalist, and National Champion, some Guru, and Elites, spent the day to attack us. For years now they could not find the common decency to support us in any way. Sure, it was the club that posted the picture, but from the start, it was about us. It will consistently and constantly be about us until they get us to quit or cancel what we do for the kids.
They hate to see our success, the bigger the write-up, the better the meet, the bigger the record break, the more they act out! You would think that they would champion success in the sport. But this is not the case. We have a beautiful new facility in California and the local competing clubs hate it! We don’t fit their agenda and it’s driving them mad, so they have their group of people attack our livelihood.
We at Vaulter Magazine have worked diligently to get to where we are with this magazine and the sport. Sorry that some do not agree with this and you have the right to disagree. That is why you only come around when you want to try and CANCEL us.
Where were you all when the club was destroyed in Louisiana? Was there a blog post? Did the justice warrior’s that all put their name on the line, (Blog Post) step up and fundraise for the destroyed club? Right away we pledged $2000.00, and then raised it to $2900.00 with no questions asked. I know that this is not enough, but we took the funds that were allocated for our club kids and rerouted them to help others in need. We started a drive and worked our butts off to get the word out. What did you do? Our pole vault expert’s around the nation, what did you do? Did you write a note, did you contact them, did you try? Odds are no, and odds are because they didn’t fit the mold that you want everyone to fit. Wrong pole, wrong sponsor, wrong state, or something. We have supported one cause after another in times of need, any way that we could. People ask us and we try to cater to their needs the best way that we can. We are all in this together and we constantly look for others to help.
This picture was up for four hours while we coached kids, then we deleted it all, then the next day, these “ELITE” athletes successfully reposted this image throughout the world over and over again. Highlighting, bringing to light, posting, raving, commenting, and more about the image they so hate. I have seen it on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, now on a personal blog, and not one of them have condemned themselves for this behavior. We have seen posts that have stated that the club is our club and facility. So much hatred was spread around the world from ignorance of the matter. No calls, emails, communication was attempted at all (apart from Megan the next day).
We tried our best to keep most names out of all of this, they failed to hesitate to smear us, however. All the people currently posting this email and talking about it are attempting to smear our name. It is not a social post to sit around and talk about, they mention us and the talk about hate to mask their intentions. They had no issue smearing us without a simple phone call or email. These are athletes that the community once supported, built up their pages, and helped gather support around. Many of these athletes have graced the cover of our magazine and did so happily.
From the start, we did what was right and deleted the post. We did not want to make a statement and do not bend a knee to the mob. We support the athletes, the kids, that work so hard to make it. We cater to the hard work and discipline of the sport and dedicate our days to just that. We will continue to do what we do for the love of the sport. We cater to the hard-working American’s that love our sport and fight for the very existence of the sport.