During an interview with The Sports Bubble, Big E spoke on not being surprised to hear about the sexual assault allegations levied against many of his fellow wrestlers as of late. Here’s what he had to say:
Sadly enough, I wasn’t surprised. You hear some whispers or have an understanding of culture. I will say there wasn’t any specific instance or a wrestler that I knew that I saw and that I had like covered up or there wasn’t anything that I knew of and just shrugged my shoulders at. So, there wasn’t anything that I was specifically aware of, but it’s honestly really, really, really saddened me to see and disgusted me to see how prevalent this was. And, I have to give my like hats off to like a friend of mine actually was the one who started this off, Victoria. She was brave enough to tell her story about David Starr and this all came out and then she emboldened a lot of women and even men to come out and talk about some of the things that they’ve experienced – the way they were victimized in this industry. And I think too often, we as men, we’ve shrugged our shoulders or we’ve said, ah, she’s probably lying or we’ve turned a blind eye to it. And we haven’t given these victims the voice and the respect that they deserve. And I think our industry should no longer and can no longer tolerate what’s going on. We can no longer tolerate rape. We can no longer tolerate sexual harassment. We can no longer shrug our shoulders at the way women have been victimized in this industry. And, I hope these stories, I don’t want to know that there are more stories or that, you know, I don’t want that to be the case. I hope this is the end of it, but I hope every woman gets an opportunity to speak her voice – to be heard, to be respected, to not be dismissed. I hope, all of the people who are guilty of this, I hope they’re eradicated from the business. I hope they’re arrested. I hope they’re imprisoned. I hope it’s something that we never see. I hope it’s a real turning point in our business, and I hope that women aren’t persecuted. I’ve already seen a lot of horrible comments from people. You know, at a time I think we have a great fan base, but I think it can also at times, there’s a portion of it, that can be very toxic. I think the way it disrespects women, the way it’s you know, condones abusers and rapists, I think is disgusting.
And I hope we continue, you know, the problem, I think one of the things that happens with a lot of these movements is that it causes a surge and then a week or so later, it can be forgotten. And I hope to God, that’s not the case. I hope this is not forgotten or if it’s not, I hope we don’t shrug our shoulders. I hope it’s something that we continue to talk about, that we continue to clean up this industry, that we continue to eradicate abusers and rapists – that we get them all out of this business, that we have them prosecuted because it’s something that no woman or man, no one should ever be victimized or, or have to endure. And seeing so many stories of kids, of people who are under age and who came into the wrestling business and wanted to learn or to train and were victimized. It’s really disgusting.
And I think, you know, as horrible as this year has been in many respects, I think the one silver lining is that people are actually listening.
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Credit: The Sports Bubble. H/T 411Mania.