Russia Claims Its Anti-Gay Law Doesn’t Discriminate “Based On Sexual Orientation”

gay-russiaThe Russian government has given the International Olympic Committee “strong written assurance”  that no one will be discriminated against for their sexual orientation because its anti-gay propaganda law isn’t discriminatory against homosexuals.

“The Russian Federation guarantees the fulfillment of its obligations before the International Olympic Committee in its entirety,” Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Kozak said in a letter to the IOC, obtained by the Associated Press. “These legislations apply equally to all persons, irrespective of their race, religion, gender, or sexual orientation, and cannot be regarded as discrimination based on sexual orientation.”

The vaguely worded anti-gay propaganda law, Kozak stressed, centers on the “restriction of information that promotes non-traditional sexual relationships among children.” However, it’s unclear if wearing a rainbow pin or carrying a tiny flag in solidarity with gay rights will violate the law, though the IOC also bans political gestures of any kind.

At the World Track and Field Championships in Moscow earlier this month, Swedish high jumper Emma Green-Tregaro painted her nails rainbow, which Russian pole vault star Yelena Isinbayeva called “unrespectful” of Russia.

Homosexuality was decriminalized in Russia in 1993, but the government continues to vilify and marginalize its LGBT population, while violent hate crimes go unchecked and unpunished. Kozak says the Russian constitution prohibits discrimination against anyone based on sex, race or religion, but sexual orientation automatically makes one a second-class citizen. And advocating for equality is essentially illegal.

So it’s fine and dandy for Russia to say that it won’t discriminate against homosexuals at the Sochi Olympics, but the very existence of an anti-gay propaganda law runs contrary to that. And anyone who thinks the Games will be discrimination-free is a fucking idiot.

“We have today received strong written reassurances from the Russian government that everyone will be welcome at the games in Sochi regardless of their sexual orientation,” IOC President Jacques Rogge said in a statement.


Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #2014olympics #gaypropaganda #internationalolympiccommittee stories and more


  • 2eo

    Fascist doublespeak.

    Nothing else.

  • Dylan

    People deserve to be acknowledged by their governments, not marginalized and made to feel like second-class citizens. Where does the hatred end?

  • Daniel-Reader

    As history proves time and again, no government committing genocide ever admits it. Politicians in the Third Reich even denied they were guilty of genocide right up until they were executed on the gallows. Not surprising several hundred politicians would deny their crimes to attempt to evade punishment when they are harming billions of gay people, their friends, families, and allies.

  • twoguysbrooklyn

    The Russians need their tyranny. They need their Czars. And someone to blame for everything.

    I think it’s called ignorance.

  • Teleny

    I hope the continued international attention will help our family members in Russia. As a kid I remember singing “free Nelson Mandela”! And ventually he was.

  • DMingledorff

    Like you can believe anything Jacques Rogge says. He just wants the Games to go on without any drama. He could care less about individuals being protected.

  • Alan down in Florida

    And if you believe that I have a bridge in Brooklyn that I’d be willing to sell you at a great discount.

  • fredhotman

    Typical fascist law: A magic wand that conjures up whatever it wants.
    A law so vague that if you sit the wrong way could indicate your propaganda.
    The audacity to think that Russia s Law is smart.
    Russian children are exposed already to alcoholism, bad homes, violence, skinheads etc.
    There seems no draconian law against these.
    Boycott Sochi do not trust Russian assurances, entrapment is a Russian speciality the consequences could be expensive I do not IOC officials intervening.

  • gayjim1969

    Change “restriction of information that promotes non-traditional sexual relationships among children” to “restriction of information that promotes __________ among children.” If any race, creed (religious belief or denomination), or other group were inserted, instead of “non-traditional sexual relationship,” the USOC and IOC would be all over it and would pressure Russia to reverse these laws or they would have sanctioned Russia by chosing a different site four years ago. Similar local and regional laws have been enacted for many years, preceding the IOC’s selection of Sochi for the 2014 Olympics.

    It makes it crystal clear just how dissembling the Russian government has chosen to be about this issue, how selectively naive the IOC is, and how important it is for GLBTTQ Olympic- and World-Level Athletes to come out and show the world just how important their contributions are to their sports and to the Games that value them so little.

    It is imperative that the Sochi Olympics happen and that GLBTTQ’s and our supporters make ourselves heard. Putin and his cronies want us to disappear; we’re here, and we’re not going away.

  • dbmyers

    @Teleny: Yes, eventually he was.

  • Derek Williams

    “Read our lips: We don’t ‘discriminate’, we just arrest LGBT people and their supporters for ‘extremism’ and ‘homosexual propaganda’ while police turn a blind eye as they are openly and violently attacked. We then charge the LGBT and their allies, imprison them up to 15 days, fine them, and fire them from their jobs the moment they come out”.

    Openly gay people are and will be arrested in Russia for being openly gay as will any supporters who don’t keep their mouths shut.

  • Psylockewitch69

    @2eo: @2eo: @2eo:@2eo:
    My thoughts exactly. The whole “what applies to one, applies to all” rhetoric is complete BS. We all know that on an issue such as this which applies solely to sexual discrimination merely state that everyone has to follow these said rule, while only targeting one particular group is ploy easily seen through.

  • technicolornina

    Putin should just wax literary.

    “Ladies and gentlemen of the international community, I assure you that in Russia all animals are created equal, but some are more equal than others.”

    That’s really all it boils down to.

  • queerty1958

    I’m thankful I live in North America [Canada]. I will never go to Russia!

Comments are closed.