Gabby Douglas Apologizes After National Anthem Controversy

“I never meant any disrespect,” writes Olympic gymnast who caught heat for not placing her hand over her heart

Gabby Douglas is going for the gold in apologizing, after drawing criticism for her behavior while the U.S. national anthem played at the Rio Olympics on Tuesday.

The gymnast caught heat on social media for not placing her hand to her heart as “The Star-Spangled Banner” played, prompting a mea culpa from Douglas on Tuesday.

In her apology, she stressed that she “never meant any disrespect.”

“In response to a few tweets I saw tonight, I always stand at attention out of respect for our country whenever the national anthem is played,” Douglas wrote. “I never meant any disrespect and apologize if I offended anyone.”

Douglas continued, “I’m so overwhelmed at what our team accomplished today and overjoyed that we were able to bring home another gold for our country!”

Douglas’ stance as the anthem was played drew criticism from some Twitter cranks, with one detractor writing, “I get you’re pissed at something Gabby Douglas, but show some pride & respect put your hand over your heart.”

Another critic grumbled, “Gabby Douglas refused to place her hand over her heart during the medal ceremony. Straight disrespect!”