Appearing in Chicago to promote her new book, Hard Choices, the former Secretary of State spoke at some length about global homophobia, not least of all in Russia. According to Clinton, some countries “are just cynical” when it comes to LGBT oppression, most of all Russia.
Clinton said that “what Putin’s doing in Russia with all these laws against the LGBT community… is just a cynical political ploy.” Even more surprising, is how Clinton reacted to it: “I’ve gotten into shouting matches with top Russian officials.” Unfortunately, she didn’t provide names, although Putin has made his disdain for Clinton well known.
Clinton made her comments in the context of a broader discussion about LGBT oppression. She said that she came to realize as Secretary of State that there was an “increasing backlash” against LGBT people. That led her to deliver her famous speech in Geneva in 2011, in which she declared that “gay rights are human rights.”
“I began to vigorously protest with governments in many parts of the world,” she said. Some countries just need to be “brought along.” Russia, of course, is a case unto itself.
The fight isn’t over, says Clinton. “We have a long way to go, I don’t want to mislead anybody,” she said. “This is going to be an ongoing struggle and the United States must be on the front lines.”
Of course, no fair speculating on who the next commander-in-chief might be for that particular battle. We’ll have to wait a while longer for that inevitable campaign announcement.