The Scientific Reason Some Americans Don’t Want Britney Griner Home From Russian Prisons

Britney Griner.

Britney Griner.AP Photo/Alexander Zemlyanichenko, pool

  • WNBA superstar Britney Griner has been sentenced to nine years in prison in Russia.

  • The U.S. government has classified her as unjustly detained and is negotiating her freedom.

  • Some Americans don’t want Griner back, and political scientists say there are two theories that could explain why.

Some Americans are actively opposing Britney Griner’s return to America.

The WNBA superstar was arrested in February after he claimed that customs officials at Moscow’s Sheremetyevo airport found vape cartridges containing hashish oil in his luggage. She was convicted of drug smuggling in early August and sentenced to nine years in a Russian prison.

Britney Griner.

Greiner is escorted out of court after receiving the verdict and judgment.Reuters/Evgenia Novozhenina/Pool

the timing of her detention, the nature of the alleged crimes, and Unfair Reputation of Russian CourtsGriner said that Moscow Leverage against the USAs such, the State Department Classified Greiner as wrongfully detained May.

“Despite strong signals from the U.S. government, I don’t believe there are legitimate cases As an expert previously told an insider, many of the two-time Olympic gold medalist’s compatriots oppose the Biden administration’s efforts to secure her freedom. Prisoner exchange negotiations with the Kremlin.

And it may be possible to scientifically explain why they sided with their foreign enemies instead of supporting their fellow Americans.

Britney Griner.

Greiner will compete for Team USA at the Tokyo Olympics.Charlie Neighborgal/AP

Dani Gilbert, an expert in hostage-taking and recovery and now a Rosenwald Fellow in U.S. Foreign Policy and International Security at the John Sloan-Dickie Center for International Understanding at Dartmouth College, told Insider that her research It suggests “how someone came to need help,” he said, which influences whether the public thinks that person should receive it. ”

According to her, the phenomenon isworthy heuristic.”

Gilbert used poverty as an illustrative example. Those who believe that the poor are simply “unlucky” are those who are willing to support programs that provide assistance. But those who see poor people as lazy are less likely to support the same programs.

her researchResearch she conducted with colleagues at the University of California, San Diego suggests that the same theory applies to public perceptions of hostages and unjustly held individuals. Greiner is no exception.

Britney Griner.

Greiner is put in a defendant’s cage during a drug smuggling trial in Russia.AP Photo/Dmitry Serebryakov

“The fact that the American public may be truly focused on suspected drug possession and outlandish accusations of drug smuggling may make the American public less willing to pay attention to this case. [and] “She’s not very supportive of government efforts to get her home,” Gilbert said.

“Unfortunately, it’s pretty predictable that Americans will react this way,” she added.

Gilbert further explained that personal characteristics can influence public perception of the Griner situation. “It doesn’t tend to affect how interested the media is in paying attention to people,” but more than a few other factors, “race is a bigger issue here.”

Britney Griner.

Greiner.Evgenia Novozenina/Pool/Reuters

This concept is properly missing white woman syndrome‘” Gilbert told Insider.

“White girls and white women being captured or arrested elicit a lot of sympathy from the American public in a different way than women and girls of color,” she explained. In my opinion, [Griner is] Black could be a big part of the lack of attention to her case. ”

“And there are other demographic characteristics, including the fact that she is openly gay, gender nonconforming and not traditionally feminine.

Griner’s beliefs may also have played a part in what she perceived as worthy of nine years in a Russian penal colony. She’s not particularly political, but she’s been heavily criticized since she only cast her first ballot in the 2020 presidential election. her take on the national anthem.

Britney Griner.

Greiner sits on the bench as the Phoenix Mercury advance to the 2021 WNBA Finals.AP Photo/Rick Scutelli

“Honestly, I don’t feel like we should be playing the national anthem during the season. I think we should take that position.” Griner told the Arizona Republic in July 2020when there are many athletes kneeled down Also stayed out of court When the national anthem was played to protest police brutality and honor blacks, including blacks killed by police. George Floyd When Breonna Taylor.

“I’m not disrespecting our country,” she added. I am proud of my country.”

Still, some see Griner as unpatriotic. Gilbert mentioned her Facebook comments she saw.

Britney Griner.

Grinder behind the bar.Alexander Zemlyanichenko/Pool via Reuters

“I think in a way it affects the whole thing that’s worth it,” Gilbert said. I decide in my heart that it means I am not worthy of the government’s support.”

“What we should really focus on is the fact that she has been unjustly detained and illegally imprisoned in a Russian prison,” she added. Deserving help to get home.”

Read the original article at insider