Russian Lawmaker Vitaly Milonov is promising to arrest Olympic athletes found to be in violation of the country’s new abusive anti-gay law. The “gay propaganda” law has led many to call for the games to be shifted from Russia since the host country would arrest athletes who are openly gay. In the meantime, a boycott of Russian vodka has picked up steam around the world in protest of the crackdown on gays and lesbians.
Milonov says that he does not know any gays and insisted that Russia is merely “defending children from the propaganda of non-traditional values.” He added that “I’ve spoken to US politicians, and they support my stance.” That might have been Sen. Larry Craig (R-ID) who already maintained a wide stance on such issues.
The greatest moment however came with Milonov explaining that the government has no choice but to arrest athletes since it would be selective prosecution not to. So the crackdown on journalists, protesters, and lawyers is not selective prosecution? It is just uniformly prosecuting critics of Vladimir Putin.
Milonov appeared to stress that being gay is not needed for some sports like figure-skating: “I can say that the best figure-skating in the world is the Soviet school of figure skating . . . All of our people have been brought up in a very traditional way.”
The Russian law is not only discriminatory but absurdly written to cover any act or effort “to spread information about non-traditional sexual behavior” to minors (under 18).” What that means is anyone’s guess but, since these games have many children interacting with athletes, an openly gay athlete would be at obvious risk. The law is part of an unholy alliance between Vladimir Putin and the Russian Orthodox church.
The comments by the way contradict an assurance from the International Olympic Committee that athletes would not be subject to the law. It certainly sets up a perfect repeat of the Berlin games with Jesse Owens and another authoritarian leader. In this case, it will be homophobia rather than racism but the scene has not changed much otherwise.
Source: IB Times