/  08.04.2022

Today (Aug. 4), the world received shocking news that WNBA star Brittney Griner was sentenced to 9 years in a Russian prison. The decorated athlete was traveling through Sheremetyevo International Airport outside Moscow in February when officials discovered cannabis oil in her luggage. Although Griner pleaded guilty to traveling with the substance, her lawyers stated it was prescribed by a physician and Griner insisted she accidentally included it in her belongings while in a rush to pack.

“I’d like to plead guilty, your honor. But there was no intent. I didn’t want to break the law. I was in a rush packing and the cartridges accidentally ended up in my bag,” she told a judge on July 7. After news of her sentence circulated, many flocked to social media to denounce the harsh punishment, including President Biden. “Today, American citizen Brittney Grier received a prison sentence that is one more reminder of what the world already knew: Russia is wrongfully detaining Brittney. It’s unacceptable, and I call on Russia to release her immediately,” he urged.

“Brittney Griner has been convicted and sentenced to 9 years in prison for bringing into Russia two cartridges of cannabis oil. Russia is not our friend. It is a hostile foreign adversary preying on an innocent person as a political pawn as trade bait for a prisoner exchange,” a user wrote. Another added, “Really disturbing how Russia is keeping Brittney Griner in a cage for some damn cannabis oil. Just abominable. Embarrassing, infuriating and f**king evil. She should be home.”

One person compared Griner’s case to former President Trump’s time in office: “Brittney Griner – Less than a gram of cannabis oil in her luggage. 9 years in prison. Donald Trump – Treason, sedition, insurrection, money laundering, fraud, rape, mass murder [and] a thousand other crimes. Still golfing, still grifting. There is no justice on Planet Earth.”

Other users saw it as an opportunity for the United States to investigate unjust situations in America. “Brittney Griner SHOULD be brought home. And this SHOULD make Americans think about all of the non-violent drug users that have been jailed with similarly harsh sentences HERE,” one person argued. We will keep Griner and her loved ones in our thoughts during this difficult time.

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