In a harbinger of the repression yet to come, Olympic security personnel tackled a gay teenager for holding up a rainbow flag during the Olympic torch relay in the town of Voronezh.
Pavel Lebedev was held and questioned by police after law enforcement officers and security men wearing official Olympic uniforms wrestled him to the ground. “Hosting the games here contradicts the basic principles of the Olympics, which is to cultivate tolerance,” Lebedev told the Associated Press.
In Vladimir Putin’s Russia, it’s not surprising that law enforcement officers quickly pounced on Lebedev for protesting the country’s homophobia. What is surprising is that Olympic security personnel went after Lebedev for a silent protest that did not disrupt the torch relay.
Lebedev’s friends uploaded a video of his protest and its aftermath. Judge for yourself for whom Olympic security is making the games safe.
(H/t: New Civil Rights Movement)