But first, the Sochi Winter Olympiad, only weeks away, the Games' host nation has opened its arms to the world — 90% of the world.Video below the fold.
ALEX WAGNER (12/17/2013): In Russia, the host of the 2014 Winter Olympics, the targeting and abuse of homosexuals is among the worst in the world.Well, there's a 2014 Olympic tourism model: Russia, where the police don't always help the people beating you.
ANDERSON COOPER (1/17/2014): Human rights groups say those speaking out for gay rights are being routinely beaten as police look on, or sometimes, by the police themselves.
Clearly, Russia isn't just gearing up for the traditional Olympic Games, but also making a strong bid to win gold at a concurrent global competition.
(black rings beat up rainbow ring in opening graphic)
Hmm, knew there was something suspicious about that fifth ring.
Now, the great thing about the Homophobic Olympics, is that just like the regular Olympics, every nation can take part. Like when Jamaica fielded a bobsled team, or Saudi Arabia competed in women's beach volleyball.
Very warm. So let's go around the globe, and meet this year's homophobic hopefuls, starting in Asia.NEWS REPORT (12/11/2013): India has again criminalized homosexuality. ... Offenders in India can be sentenced to jail for ten years.Yes, because traditional Indian culture has always held that sex is meant to be between a man and a woman, who is apparently being suspended by two other women
wearing nipple chains, over the penis of the man, who is upside-down at the time, and whilst thoughtfully massaging the assistant women's genitalia. Not that weird gay shit. (audience laughter throughout description)
Ten years in prison for committing gay acts! Clearly wins India a place in this year's homophobic competition, but the real action is in the African qualifying groups, where two countries are currently battling it out for the last spot.SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN (1/14/2014): Gay people in Nigeria now can be jailed just for gathering with each other. For partying or meeting any associates whatsoever.Strong opening move. Good news for Nigeria's homophobe team. Bad news for Lagos's new production of Kinky Boots. (audience laughter) I don't really know if that's happening.
So in Nigeria, gay people can't even meet up. How do you top that?HALA GORANI, CNN (1/17/2014): Uganda recently passed a bill that makes homosexuality a crime punishable by life in prison.(shocked audience laughter)
And Uganda takes the lead! By moving backwards! Nigeria, are you going to intolerate that?SUZANNE MALVEAUX, CNN (1/14/2014): Anyone who helps a gay person or patronizes or operates any type of gay organization can be prosecuted.What the fuck?! (audience laughter) So not just gay people, but anybody who helps.... They're not just going after Will, now they're going after Grace? (audience laughter and applause) I believe they're applauding... ah yes, I remember that show.
Nigeria, on their way. But still, clearly, the gay-phobic country to beat this year is Mother Russia. They've got home field advantage, and a star who's been making a real name for himself — Vladimir Putin, a man equally at home horseback riding (picture of shirtless Putin horseback riding), or hunting (picture of shirtless Putin hunting), or speaking at a funeral.
"Another thing I'll always remember about Grandpa...."
And what a contrast in styles you're about to see. The African brand of homophobia — aggressive, attacking, slashing. Literally. The Russians — more strategic, they're chess players, subtler. Almost seeming to disavow their anti-gay bias until the last crucial second.VLADIMIR PUTIN (1/17/2014): We aren't banning anything. We aren't rounding up anyone. We have no criminal punishment for such relations.(whispers like Olympic TV commentator) There's Vladimir Putin, gorgeous head-fake towards tolerance. And now... let's watch him drop the hammer.
VLADIMIR PUTIN (1/17/2014): So one could feel relaxed and at ease. But please, leave the children in peace.Ohh, doctor!! That has got to guarantee gold in the prestigious Gay People/Pedophile Conflation event! What the hell was that, Putin? That's like me saying, we have no problem with Russians. Just please, if you come here, don't fuck our bears. (audience laughter and applause) We love Russians, they're very nice people. Just, we'd like our bears not to be penetrated by Russian penises.
But it is a good point, Vladimir. You know, when you say please leave the children in peace, what would be an example of that? For instance, would you not want to walk up to a small boy you've never met, maybe lift up his shirt, and kiss his bare torso?
(shocked audience response)
Is that the creepy behavior you're talking about?
Meanwhile, Stephen devoted his entire show to the cOlbert's Book Club, this time focused on Ernest Hemingway, and talked with Pulitzer Prize-winning author Michael Chabon and Ernest's granddaughter, actress Mariel Hemingway.