Growing international backlash against Russian anti-gay Olympic threat

Another out-of-control news day over Russian’s anti-gay laws and the upcoming 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

The international news is especially heartening.  This topic is gaining significant additional steam internationally.

From Reporters with Borders

From Reporters with Borders

FIFA head still waiting to hear from the Russians about the 2018 World Cup:

FIFA legal statutes state that discrimination is “punishable by suspension or expulsion” for individuals in football or member federations.

When you speak with the Russians, they don’t speak about discrimination, they speak about protection (of minors). That is different. I said, ‘So please give me the evidence that you are protecting somebody and not discriminating,'” Blatter told the AP on the sidelines of his annual charity soccer tournament in his family’s home village.

Blatter intends to table the issue at an Oct. 3-4 meeting of the 27-member FIFA executive committee, which includes Russia’s sports minister, Vitaly Mutko.

Canada’s Globe and Mail blasts IOC over Olympic response:

Russia’s new law equates expressions of support for gay rights with “propaganda.” Russian officials have emphasized that the law does not prosecute people for being gay. Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak wrote to the IOC last week, saying it “cannot be regarded as discrimination based on sexual orientation.” This is doublespeak. The law is clearly discriminatory, restricts free expression, and only serves to legitimize a well-documented culture of intolerance against gay people in Russia. Besides all that, it is still unclear whether athletes or spectators who attend will be punished for protesting….

The IOC has traditionally stayed away from politics. But it cannot pretend to stand apart from the event it orchestrates. The choice of host country impacts billions of dollars of infrastructure investment, and billions more in sponsorship and marketing revenues. Allowing Russia to bask in the glory of an Olympic Games – and to use the event to advertise the country, as all hosts do – while flouting many of the ideals the movement stands for is perverse.

German artists protest Russia.

Big protest in Amsterdam.

South Africans hold kiss-in.

Copenhagen Pride protests Russians.

Canadian Olympians, in contrast to weak-kneed American Olympians who have been told to shut up by the US Olympic Committee, speak out against Russian threats against Olympic athletes.

Gay Australian Olympic hopeful speaks out.

English violinist cancels Russia concert.

Will Holland file an official complaint against Russia?

North Carolina town considers cutting ties with Russian city.

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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13 Responses to “Growing international backlash against Russian anti-gay Olympic threat”

  1. Alex Winston says:

    That will never work. The best one can hope for is that the sponsors pull out. That is where the focus should be. Everything else is a waste of time.

  2. Alex Winston says:

    A decent person wouldn’t be there. Russians will not be influenced by rainbow flags or brief kisses. A ban of the lawmakers won’t accomplish anything either. You don’t participate as an athlete or sponsor out of decency not necessarily because it will have an impact. Russia is poor, uneducated, corrupt and violent. They have a long way to go to become a decent society. Oh, and it’s “medal”.

  3. Luke James says:

    We need all our straight friends to use the meddle stand , a gold winner will thus kiss a silver winner and so on ( same sex kissing ) there is no way that any one can stop this other than sending in the Russian police to arrest those winners who used there time to its best effect .Small tinny weeny little rainbow pins are next to use less and I am sure that Russians will laugh if this is all we can come up with. Same sex male kissing is a very public way to answer this and when it comes from the meddle winners – it would be a very bad move if the Russians ( a good move from our point of view ) tried to arrest those meddle winners and would give us a “propaganda ” victory that those small rain bow pins can never . I all so hope every one has signed the petition to have the writer’s of this law banned from the U.S.A. . I hear that it still needs many more to sign = what are people waiting for ? This travel ban to the U.S.A. is what they most fear , yet no one seems to be signing it , why is this ??????????

  4. IVan says:

    Russia Russia Russia. Everything is wild there :D

    Bakugan Games

  5. Anonymous says:

    The “political youth groups” say it all. He’s exploiting young people into believing that he is the best leader. It’s sad how he restricts information to create a naive, ignorant majority. The conformist, lynch mob mentality will provide a distraction from government corruption.

  6. BeccaM says:

    Over the last few weeks, I’ve been reading about a number of gay Russian families looking to flee the country before the government takes away their kids.

  7. Anonymous says:

    Even the majority there don’t have enough rights. They’re just too ignorant to realize it. Being under the false impression of “Putin’s chosen ones” has made them complacent and malleable.

  8. David says:

    The Sochi games begin in Feb 2014. What are we going to demand from Russia and the IOC in order to not disrupt the games and make a mockery of the corporate investors (Coca-Cola, McDonalds, VW, etc) that have lined the pockets of Putin’s corrupt cronies?

    I propose that we demand that the anti-gay law must be off the books, if that’s a feasible goal. Also the IOC must publicly condemn Russia and promise not to make the same mistake again by hosting the Olympics in a country that has such a troubled history of human rights abuses.

  9. Ryan says:

    Kudos to FIFA for forcing Russia to explain how they are protecting minors. Forcing them to defend their argument will reveal how hateful it really is.

  10. Butch1 says:

    The Brass Knuckles Olympic Circles Logo is bloody brilliant! ( if you will pardon my pun. ) It is said: “A picture is worth a thousand words.” This logo certainly captures that.

  11. Dave of the Jungle says:

    Nationalism and intolerance are two sides of the same coin. It’s quite apparent that Putin wants to be the next strong man of the Eurasian Continent. Here we go again.

  12. Houndentenor says:

    I heard an interesting interview yesterday (on Gay USA, available online) with a couple who have just left Russia. This is part of a nationalistic movement in Russia. Anything that seems foreign is being demonized. Homosexuality is just one part of that. Minority religions, ethnicities, etc are also unwelcome, as you point out. We need to see this in context. The anti-gay policies are horrible but just one part of how horrible it is for lots of people.

  13. Bj Lincoln says:

    We might want to add they don’t like people of color or Jews either. The Russians are NOT a very welcoming country for a large part of the people in or attending the games.
    I do hope this is a step towards exposing other countries discrimination of LGBT people and stopping it on a global scale. We, the good people of Earth, must ban together and take a stand against all forms of discrimination to create a planet of true peace so we can work together toward a greater good instead of the petty fighting that has ruled since we first roamed the Earth.

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