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  1. #781

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    IMO one of the most dangerous sides of the law in Russia is that it is a step backwards, which can lead to further steps backwards. While it is true that there are other countries where LGBT people are in a worse condition, we assume that progress will be made and things will get better, not worse!

  2. #782
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    Quote Originally Posted by kwanfan1818 View Post
    It's also a bad law in that it is vague and can be interpreted at will, especially when the cameras aren't on and there isn't an Olympics coming up.
    Quote Originally Posted by Justathoughtabl View Post
    ...In Russia's case, the most dangerous part of the law (IMO) is that it encourages homophobia, which leads to anti-gay violence.
    ^^both of these.

    but I think it is fair to acknowledge that public demonstrations of pro-gay sentiment can make things less dangerous while we realize that we have got to keep the world's eye on the situation beyond these public events like the Olympics. Things can be improved and may even be less dangerous right now because of the protests of the situation.
    Congratulations 2014 World Ice Dance Champions Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte!!!

  3. #783

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    Quote Originally Posted by Asli View Post
    IMO one of the most dangerous sides of the law in Russia is that it is a step backwards, which can lead to further steps backwards. While it is true that there are other countries where LGBT people are in a worse condition, we assume that progress will be made and things will get better, not worse!
    This, a million times.
    For me as an ex- Russian, and always a Russian in some ways, this is one of the most crushing things. Soviet Russia collapsed while the prevalent attitude was "there is no homosexuality and if there is we don't talk about it" ( whisperings about Tchaikovsky, Nureev, Richter, Paradjanov and Tsvetaeva in the confinements of your kitchen). I remember trying to understand when my close friend - in the mid- to late- 80ies- told me she was a lesbian and there was the whole underground life I was not aware of... I was a teen, and it was a complete surprise- a shock- to hear). Then, in the 90ies, 2000+, it seemed that Russia went Western and the attitudes adjusted quickly; gay community could exist being "out", even though Russia is significantly more homophobic than Europe and the US. It is the step backwards that is so upsetting, because it is not clear when it will end, how will it manifest itself, and it is a very worrisome tendency for the country. Gay couples went to Russia 10 years ago and loved seeing the country; now I would be scared to recommend they go.
    Last edited by dinakt; 12-20-2013 at 09:03 PM.
    improving my ballad- like lines

  4. #784
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    From the presidential press conference transcript - 12/20/13:

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/politi...6a3_story.html

    [President Obama calls on the next reporter for a question...]

    Let's see, Phil Mattingly.

    Q: Thank you, Mr. President. What was the message you were trying to send with not only your decision not to attend the Sochi games, but also with the people you named to the delegation to represent the United States at those games?

    PRESIDENT OBAMA: Well, first of all, I haven't attended Olympics in the past and I suspect that, you know -- you know, me attending Olympics, particularly at a time when we've got all the other stuff that people have been talking about, is going to be tough, although I would love to do it. I'll be going to a lot of Olympic Games post- presidency. (Laughter.)

    I think the delegation speaks for itself. You've got outstanding Americans, outstanding athletes, people who will represent us extraordinarily well. And, you know, the fact that we've got folks like Billie Jean King or Brian Boitano, who themselves have been world-class athletes that everybody acknowledges for their excellence but also for their character, who also happen to be members of the LGBT community, you should take that for what it's worth, that when it comes to the Olympics and athletic performance we don't make distinctions on the basis of sexual orientation. We judge people on how they perform, both on the court and off the court, on the field and off the field. And that's a value that I think is at the heart of not just America but American sports.

  5. #785

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post


    Elton John concert was a high profile event involving one of the most accomplished and well-known artists in the world. Obviously the government is not going to arrest him or people who were there because there would be international outrage and it would be terrible PR for them.

    Where are the horrible effects of this law?

    Since it was enacted, there was an increase in violence against LGBT persons. A 23-year old men was raped with beer bottles and brutally murdered. There have been pictures and videos of people who assault or torture lgbt persons and then proudly share it via social media.

    I cannot even imagine what it must feel like to be an lgbt person in Russia at the moment. The fear, the internalised self-hate, the feeling of not fitting in, of being an outcast. And it's not like the situation was good to begin with. Elton John, Madonna and Tilda Swinton will be fine. It's the ordinary people who are affected by this law.
    The things you are talking about and one of the most famous cases was before the law! Well not the St. Petersberg law but the national law. This law does not legalize crimes against gays or restricts homosexuality. All the countries have an option and that is to boycott Sochi. But Athletes are saying sports first gay rights second or third or not at all. If the law was being so harmful and obviously harmful than everyone could just boycott no problem.

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    I don't think any athletes are saying sports first gay rights second etc. I think that people who are participating don't feel that participation in the Olympics is endorsing the law or that not participating would stop the law. I don't think people should make assumptions that someone is participating they don't think gay rights are as important as sports.

    caseyedwards do you think the law is harmless? IIRC, you've said before that its not a good law? You don't have to dismiss the harm of the law to disagree with some of the charaterizations of it. I think you are right if you are saying the law didn't cause the climate that has led to violence against gays (something in no way unique to Russia of course). A lot of us feel that the passage of the law indicates an increase in acceptance of a climate that is negative for gays rather than t hat the law is the root of the problem. But the law is harmful even if it didn't cause the problem but is a result of the problems for gays in Russia.
    Congratulations 2014 World Ice Dance Champions Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte!!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by caseyedwards View Post
    But Athletes are saying sports first gay rights second or third or not at all.
    Again, you're deliberately misunderstanding. Not all athletes are saying that.
    Who wants to watch rich people eat pizza? They must have loved that in Bangladesh. - Randy Newman on the 2014 Oscars broadcast

  8. #788
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    Quote Originally Posted by caseyedwards View Post
    The things you are talking about and one of the most famous cases was before the law! Well not the St. Petersberg law but the national law. This law does not legalize crimes against gays or restricts homosexuality. All the countries have an option and that is to boycott Sochi. But Athletes are saying sports first gay rights second or third or not at all. If the law was being so harmful and obviously harmful than everyone could just boycott no problem.
    I feel like people are acting as if a boycott would solve everything. And I also feel like there's an accusation against athletes who have expressed how important the Olympics are that they don't care about gay rights. I don't think anyone is ranking sports and gay rights in order of importance. That's one thing I think is so important about Obama's delegations. These are LGBT athletes who also totally understand the drive to compete and reach one's potential in a sport. It just sucks that the Olympics will be in a place where there is this terrible law. On the other hand, if the Olympics weren't in Russia, would anyone outside Russia be talking about this law? India, Uganda, and I can't remember the other country--but all three recently made new anti-gay legislation.

  9. #789
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justathoughtabl View Post
    On the other hand, if the Olympics weren't in Russia, would anyone outside Russia be talking about this law? India, Uganda, and I can't remember the other country--but all three recently made new anti-gay legislation.
    I and many other individuals and human rights organizations talk about all these laws nearly every day on Twitter and Facebook.

    The media spotlight is on Russia due to the Olympics being there, but these other terrible, regressive laws are not being ignored.

  10. #790
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    Quote Originally Posted by caseyedwards View Post
    The things you are talking about and one of the most famous cases was before the law! Well not the St. Petersberg law but the national law. This law does not legalize crimes against gays or restricts homosexuality. All the countries have an option and that is to boycott Sochi. But Athletes are saying sports first gay rights second or third or not at all. If the law was being so harmful and obviously harmful than everyone could just boycott no problem.
    Law has a normative function.

    To give an example, most people would consider drinking alcohol acceptable but smoking marijuana wrong. Even though alcohol is much more harmful than marijuana, both in terms of harm to an individual's health and the social cost. Why? Because the former is legal and the latter isn't.

    To give another example, if you look at support for civil partnerships/marriage equality/gay adoption, before and after they have been made legal, there is a clear increase after the legalisation, which is perceived as giving that issue legitimacy and making it the norm.

    The Russian law sends a very clear message that homosexuality is not ok. This obviously is going to affect people's perception of it. Especially given that in order to justify a law of being passed, a hate and smear campaign presenting homosexuality as evil and 'unnatural' has been intensified.

    Boycott of the Olympics was never a sensible option. Not just because it was never realistic given the business interests but it wouldn't be fair to the athletes who have worked hard all of their life for this one event.

  11. #791
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    Oh wow Ziggy that was the clearest explanation of the situation, what it means to have such a law. Thank you for the clarity.
    Congratulations 2014 World Ice Dance Champions Anna Cappellini & Luca Lanotte!!!

  12. #792

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    Law has a normative function.

    To give an example, most people would consider drinking alcohol acceptable but smoking marijuana wrong. Even though alcohol is much more harmful than marijuana, both in terms of harm to an individual's health and the social cost. Why? Because the former is legal and the latter isn't.

    To give another example, if you look at support for civil partnerships/marriage equality/gay adoption, before and after they have been made legal, there is a clear increase after the legalisation, which is perceived as giving that issue legitimacy and making it the norm.

    The Russian law sends a very clear message that homosexuality is not ok. This obviously is going to affect people's perception of it. Especially given that in order to justify a law of being passed, a hate and smear campaign presenting homosexuality as evil and 'unnatural' has been intensified.

    Boycott of the Olympics was never a sensible option. Not just because it was never realistic given the business interests but it wouldn't be fair to the athletes who have worked hard all of their life for this one event.
    No one is saying the athletes can't have a big international competiton that's very important and symbolic of their work and struggle! In 1980 there were alternate games just like in 1984. It's up to athletes and media to make them matter and replace the Olympics of that year.

    Also this law isn't creating anything new in Russia at all. If you say this law is all about killing gays that was going on before the law!

  13. #793
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    Quote Originally Posted by dardar1126 View Post
    I and many other individuals and human rights organizations talk about all these laws nearly every day on Twitter and Facebook.

    The media spotlight is on Russia due to the Olympics being there, but these other terrible, regressive laws are not being ignored.
    Ah, I meant the media. I think the Olympics has brought the Russia law into the mainstream media spotlight, whereas I had never heard about anti-gay laws in the mainstream media before this (only a couple of stories on NPR).

  14. #794
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    Quote Originally Posted by Justathoughtabl View Post
    Ah, I meant the media. I think the Olympics has brought the Russia law into the mainstream media spotlight, whereas I had never heard about anti-gay laws in the mainstream media before this (only a couple of stories on NPR).
    I channel-surf ABC and NBC nightly news shows, and I watch PBS News Hour and BBC World News (I used to watch DW English-language TV from Germany, but PBS changed the time-slot, and now I'm unable to see it). All have, to a greater or lesser extent (i.e. more on BBC/PBS, less on ABC/NBC), covered these repressive laws in Russia, Uganda, and India.

    Part of the problem is that mainstream networks in the US are cutting back or eliminating their foreign bureaus, thus either relying on foreign network coverage (esp. ITN) or just pretty much ignoring non-US-related foreign news.

    It's a chicken-and-egg problem...do the networks cover less foreign news because American don't care/are uninterested...or are Americans less interested because the networks don't cover it.

  15. #795
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    Quote Originally Posted by caseyedwards View Post
    Also this law isn't creating anything new in Russia at all. If you say this law is all about killing gays that was going on before the law!
    That isn't what I said. My point was:

    Legalising something increases the social acceptance of that thing.

    Criminalising something decreases the social acceptance of that thing.

    (Furthermore, in order to rationalise passing the bill criminalising 'propaganda of non-traditional relations,' a public hate campaign against non-heteronormative people was conducted in the media)
    Last edited by Ziggy; 12-23-2013 at 02:42 PM.

  16. #796

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    good article!
    The Anti-Gay Atmosphere in Figure Skating
    http://www.counterpunch.org/2013/12/...igure-skating/
    Nothing great was ever achieved without enthusiasm - Ralph Waldo Emerson

  17. #797
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    Cartoonist Keith Knight tweeted:

    "Add an "s" to a comic strip,and all hell breaks loose. http://www.knightlifecomic.com/comic...test-break-up/ …"

    The first comment about the strip on his website was:

    A lesbian character? Was that really necessary? Can’t we all agree that comics, which young kids read, should be a demilitarized zone in the culture wars?
    It's a good thing this wasn't in Russia, where he could have been charged with creating homosexual propaganda aimed at minors.
    "'Is this new BMW-designed sled the ultimate sledding machine for Langdon and Holcomb?' Leigh Diffey asked before the pair cruised to victory. I don’t know, but I know that sled is the ultimate Olympic Games product placement.." -- Jen Chaney

  18. #798

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    Quote Originally Posted by Ziggy View Post
    That isn't what I said. My point was:

    Legalising something increases the social acceptance of that thing.

    Criminalising something decreases the social acceptance of that thing.

    (Furthermore, in order to rationalise passing the bill criminalising 'propaganda of non-traditional relations,' a public hate campaign against non-heteronormative people was conducted in the media)
    The government is so close to the church and the People are very culturally conservative both as a product of religion and just the non religious culture. But even with that homosexuality is not a crime and the government policies are much more liberal than the majority of people.

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    Quote Originally Posted by caseyedwards View Post
    The government is so close to the church and the People are very culturally conservative both as a product of religion and just the non religious culture. But even with that homosexuality is not a crime and the government policies are much more liberal than the majority of people.
    What in the blue hell are you talking about? Maybe you should do some reading about Russian culture and law and educate yourself before expressing your opinion. And I'm calling it your opinion because these statements have nothing to do with reality or facts.
    Who wants to watch rich people eat pizza? They must have loved that in Bangladesh. - Randy Newman on the 2014 Oscars broadcast

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    Quote Originally Posted by overedge View Post
    What in the blue hell are you talking about? Maybe you should do some reading about Russian culture and law and educate yourself before expressing your opinion. And I'm calling it your opinion because these statements have nothing to do with reality or facts.
    Russia's laws on homosexuality are more liberal than the country is a whole. That's a fact.

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