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View Diary: Cultures don't have rights. People do. (153 comments)

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  •  I want to see it turned into a pride parade (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Ahianne, Ian Reifowitz, INMINYMA, Matt Z

    I'm looking forward to seeing athletes kissing. Fans, too.

    I expect Russia not to go after athletes within the venues or the Olympic Village. I expect them to go after fans, and anybody else who ventures outside Olympic territory with any indication of support for LGB athletes. (Ts are unwelcome at the Olympics. Transgender Female Olympic Athletes 'Castrated' in Order to Compete in Sports) I expect major incidents at airports as athletes arrive and depart. I expect State Department warnings to travelers to anywhere in Russia at any time.

    It's going to be a PR disaster for Russia, at which the bigots will exult. Just like our bigots, for whom Progressive opposition is worn as a badge of (dis)honor.

    If US history is any guide, it will take 50 years to win this fight in Russia through generational turnover, just as it has been 44 years and counting since Stonewall and we do not have Marriage Equality yet. I hope I am wrong on that.

    Ceterem censeo, gerrymandra delenda est

    by Mokurai on Mon Sep 02, 2013 at 06:18:24 AM PDT

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    •  PR Disaster is the best we can hope for (3+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Ian Reifowitz, lostboyjim, Matt Z

      There simply isn't going to be a boycott and the IOC is clearly more concerned about $$ than human rights. Unfortunately, any obvious ways of expressing support for LGBT Russians will run afoul of either Russian law or the IOC's policy against political protests.

      However, there may be a way to create a PR disaster without anyone putting themselves at risk of arrest, detention or expulsion from the Games - take the model of the Day of Silence. Each April, LGBT students and allies take a vow to remain silent for an entire day to bring attention to the lack of a voice LGBT students often have in our schools. When asked to speak, they produce a card that states why they are remaining silent.

      Now any such cards used by athletes could still run afoul of the IOC's policy. So instead I would love to see supportive athletes refusing to provide publicity for the Sochi Games. No interviews, no publicity pieces, no ads. If they are interviewed or approached by the media during the Games, they should politely refuse saying "I don't want to violate any laws, so will hold my statements until I'm back on home soil." Imagine a Games with all the sports and athletes, but no "Up Close and Personal" pieces, no interviews with those who medal, none of the extra stuff that people turn in for. Then imagine all of those athletes returning home (before the Closing Ceremonies, which should be boycotted by all athletes) and denouncing both Russia and the IOC for supporting oppression.

      We could add to that by having organized protests at Russian embassies and consulates around the world, forcing at least some in the media to cover the violations of human rights rampant in Putin's czarist reign.

      Boycott Russian vodka, Russian caviar and all things Russian. LGBT oppression cannot be allowed to stand.

      by CPT Doom on Mon Sep 02, 2013 at 07:34:04 AM PDT

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