WWE star Jaxson Ryker is a member of the Smackdown stable The Forgotten Sons, but today he's likely not happy with the long memory of the internet. Ryker came under first after tweeting his support of WWE Hall-of-Famer President Donald Trump this week, and soon after, the internet unearthed an older Facebook post in which Ryker calls the Black Lives Matter movement "garbage." Jaxson Ryker is a Marine Corps veteran of the Iraq War and also wrestled in TNA under the name Gunner, where he held the TNA Television Championship as well as the Tag Team Championship with James Storm.
The trouble began when Ryker tweeted "Thankful for the @POTUS we have! God bless America. Built of freedom. Forgotten No More," just after Trump gave a speech last night announcing intentions to use the United States military to quell protests. Naturally, this didn't go over well with some of Ryker's pro wrestling colleagues, who have been broadly expressing support for protestors in the wake of the killing of George Floyd by police. Though spurred by Floyd's killing, the protests are a reaction to decades of police brutality that has taken the lives of countless Black men and women.
Kevin Owens tweeted, "The freedom you speak of entitles you to speak your mind all you want. I'm not here to argue that. I just really need to tell you that I think you pushing your s**tty wrestling catchphrase as all of this is happening is absolutely f**king pathetic. Good night." Dave Bautista wrote, "I'm just keeping him nameless because he's a sorry ass motherf**ker who I refuse to let ride my coattails. He gets no love from me. He gets no rub from me. And if he would like to discuss it in person we have enough mutual acquaintances that he will be able to find me easily." Mustafi Ali tweeted, "I'm thankful you posted this because I'm now aware of what you stand for. When black brothers and sisters are crying, you praise someone that refuses to acknowledge their hurt." And they were far from the only ones.
"Literally built on oppression," tweeted Sami Zayn. "Someone is gonna take a nice s**t in your gear bag…." said Joey Janella. Even Ryker's own tag team partners declined to have his back, with Steve Cutler tweeting, "Although I am part of a tag team while I wrestle, I am my own person with my own thoughts and beliefs. It pains me to see what's going on in the world. I fought for the freedom of our country and ALL of the people who live here," and adding, "It shouldn't matter your race or however you identify, we are ALL human beings and ALL deserve to be equal. #JusticeForGeorgeFloyd." Wesley Blake liked Cutler's tweets.
Soon after, someone unearthed a Facebook post from last year in which Ryker criticized the Black Lives Matter movement. "Pretty touchy subject but all this black lives matter garbage baffles me," Ryker wrote in the post. "I challenge anyone of any color or race to go watch 12 years a slave, the movie and realize how good you all actually have it. Learn heritage. Chris, Gandhi, Budda; They all taught love and caring for others. This is getting out of hand. I Pray for this nation daily." In response, Jaxson Ryker set his Facebook page to "friends only."