CNN reports that while only two people made it onto the stage, at least four others in the audience yelled anti-Lochte chants. Lochte has been facing the negative aftermath of his Olympic scandal in which he admitted to exaggerating claims that he was robbed at gunpoint while in Rio.
And while Lochte is far from deserving of the American public's love right now, that doesn't mean people get to be disrespectful and disruptive.
DWTS judge Carrie Ann Inaba was clearly unimpressed with the troublemakers who came onstage uninvited.
"Excuse me," she said repeatedly while the camera stayed on her. ABC reportedly refused to air footage of the protesters, assumedly so as not to encourage future incidents with unnecessary publicity.
"So many feelings are going through my head right now," Lochte said when the show returned from break after security was able to get the situation under control, "I'm a little hurt."
That comment didn't help me feel sympathy for him, but I am, of course, glad the protest didn't go any further than just a rude interruption. I think Lochte has a lot more apologizing to do before he gets the country back on his side. I don't see him lasting long on Dancing with the Stars just because who will vote for someone who embarrassed the nation on a world stage? Of course, the show will probably want to keep him on for the sake of viewership since everyone is buzzing about what he'll have to say throughout the season.
I'm not sure I'm willing to give him a second chance. I was so disappointed by his actions at the Olympics because I felt that what he did took away from all the amazing, respectable athletes who made the United States look good in Rio. Thanks to Lochte, we just looked like assholes.
Maybe that world embarrassment is punishment enough for Lochte. And maybe, through DWTS, he'll be able to begin to make amends. But for me, it's just too soon to see him trying to win back the public. I'm actually surprised that DWTS even let him compete on the show, given that practically all of Lochte's sponsors back home quickly dropped him.
I think Lochte should have gone from the Olympics to some alone time for self-reflection, not back in front of a national audience.
But just because Lochte needs to learn some manners, doesn't mean that those who are upset with him get to forget theirs.
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