Olympics: Fencing

Aug 12, 2016; Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Race Imboden (USA) reacts during the men's team foil bronze medal match in the Rio 2016 Summer Olympic Games at Carioca Arena 3. Mandatory Credit: Jeff Swinger-USA TODAY Sports

A pair of American athletes face possible discipline over their protests during the medal ceremonies this weekend at the 2019 Pan American Games in Lima, Peru.

Race Imboden, a fencer, took a knee as he received his gold medal as part of the men's foil team. Hammer thrower Gwen Berry raised a fist as the national anthem played during her medal ceremony.

Imboden, a two-time Olympian, explained his stance in a post on social media.

"We must call for change.

"This week I am honored to represent Team USA at the Pan Am Games, taking home Gold and Bronze. My pride however has been cut short by the multiple shortcomings of the country I hold so dear to my heart. Racism, Gun Control, mistreatment of immigrants and a president who spreads hate are at the top of a long list. I chose to sacrifice my moment today at the top of the podium to call attention to issues that I believe need to be addressed. I encourage others to please use your platforms for empowerment and change."

The U.S. Olympic and Paralympic Committee does not allow athletes to make any demonstrations of a religious, political or racial nature during Olympics-related events.

"Every athlete competing at the 2019 Pan American Games commits to terms of eligibility, including to refrain from demonstrations that are political in nature," USOPC vice president of communications Mark Jones said in a statement to ESPN on Sunday. "In these cases, the athletes didn't adhere to the commitment they made to the organizing committee and the USOPC. We respect their rights to express their viewpoints, but we are disappointed that they chose not to honor their commitment. Our leadership are reviewing what consequences may result."

--Field Level Media

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