Victor Martinez reacts to Arnold Schwarzenegger’s “Screw Your Freedom” comments.
Victor Martinez is a pro bodybuilder who is not afraid to speak his mind – but he’s also someone who likes to make sure he’s critically analyzed all the facts before he cements his opinion. That’s why he’s taken some time thinking over Arnold Schwarzenegger’s controversial freedom comments and the bodybuilding communities reaction to it. In our latest GI Exclusive interview, Victor Martinez explains his defense of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s freedom comments.
On August 13th, 2021, an interview with Arnold Schwarzenegger went viral across the bodybuilding, strength sports, and fitness community. Speaking on CNN, Schwarzenegger stated, “Screw your freedom” in response to Americans who were anti-mask mandates. You can see his full statement here. Schwarzenegger was stressing, albeit aggressively, that community health was more important than individual freedom where dangerous consequences could be endured.
The bodybuilding, strength sports, and fitness community ignited with many making statements on social media condemning Schwarzenegger’s statement. Some pulled down posters. In the biggest move, supplement company RedCon1 pulled out of sponsoring the Arnold Classic 2021 set to occur on September 25th.
Last week, we were able to reconnect with Generation Iron alum and pro bodybuilder Victor Martinez. During our catch up, Arnold Schwarzenegger’s comments were brought up. Perhaps somewhat surprisingly, Martinez defended Schwarzenegger and his statements. He also weighed in on the bigger fitness community’s angry reaction to the statement.
“You don’t need to explain it to me. I saw it. I saw it one time. I saw it one time and for some reason, yes, I know what he said, you know – ‘Screw your freedom.’ That became the focus,” Victor Martinez states in our interview. He continues:
“…There’s certain things you say where you think you can say them and right now a lot of people are too soft. They’re too soft on words. They’re too soft on what they hear. They jump the gun on smallest thing that really is irrelevant to what the person really is. I mean, I think Arnold is more American than most Americans actually.”
Not only does he think that people as a whole have become too sensitive. He also thinks they are misinterperating what Schwarzenegger really meant when he stated, “Screw your freedom.” Martinez goes further to try and explain his viewpoint:
“He didn’t say screw your freedom like when America became free in 1776 on July 4th and they declared their freedom… that’s not the kind of freedom Arnold said you know. Be responsible with your freedom, you know? Yes you are free but that doesn’t mean be carelessly free, you know? Wear your mask.”
Ultimately, Victor Martinez still holds extreme respect for Arnold Schwarzenegger. He finds that he has not only given back to the bodybuilding community throughout his entire life – but he’s also given back to America since becoming a citizen. This is a trying time for many people across the world. It’s causing gut reactions and bold statements that might be a bit too black and white.
It seems that Victor Martinez is trying to see the grey and the nuance during these troubling times. He believes Arnold Schwarzenegger believes in freedom but he also believes in responsibility. Do you agree or still find Schwarzenegger’s comments a step too far?
You can watch Victor Martinez’s full comments in our latest GI Exclusive interview segment above and decide for yourself!