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Should Sha’Carri Richardson be allowed to compete in the 2021 Olympics?

The 21-year-old sprinter was suspended after testing positive for marijuana.

Ashley Landis
Sha'Carri Richardson competed for LSU in college.

Sha’Carri Richardson, the 21-year-old sprinter who won the 100-meter dash at the Olympic trials in 10.86 seconds earlier this month, has been suspended for 30 days by USA Track and Field after testing positive for cannabis, preventing her from running the event in Tokyo.

Richardson’s suspension ends on July 27 though, which would still allow her to run in the women’s relays at the Olympics, but officials at USA Track and Field have yet to say if she will be allowed to compete.

Marijuana use is legal in Oregon, where Richardson made the Olympic team, but the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency policy on marijuana use is that aside from cannabidiol, or CBD, “all synthetic and naturally occurring cannabinoids are prohibited in competition.”

During an interview with the “Today” show Friday, Richardson said she smoked marijuana as a way to cope after learning of her biological mother’s recent death.

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“I want to take responsibility for my actions,” she said. “I know what I did. I know what I’m supposed to do — [what] I’m allowed not to do — and I still made that decision.”

Should she be allowed to run in the relay, Richardson said she would be “grateful, but if not, I’m just going to focus on myself.”

Do you think this suspension is a fair punishment? Let us know your thoughts on whether or not Richardson should’ve been suspended, and if you think she should be allowed to race in the 2021 Olympics by filling out the survey below or emailing us, [email protected] We’ll feature your responses in a future article. 

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