Chris MacDonald Gets It Right on Sochi

Chris MacDonald
Chris MacDonald

Chris MacDonald Gets It Right on Sochi

Good post. Good article. Good advocacy.

James Pilant

(As always with Chris MacDonald’s work, you should go to his web site and read the post in its entirety – and if you think my advice is any good – you should stay at his site and read some more of his fine writing. jp)

Sochi, and Solidarity With the Gay Community | The Business Ethics Blog

The business community can, and should, follow AT&T’s lead in speaking out in solidarity with the LGBT community. On February 4th, the company’s Consumer Blog featured an entry entitled, A Time for Pride and Equality. “We support LGBT equality globally and we condemn violence, discrimination and harassment targeted against LGBT individuals everywhere. Russia’s law is harmful to LGBT individuals and families, and it’s harmful to a diverse society.”

Russia’s anti-gay laws and attitudes are repugnant. Russian President Vladimiar Putin clearly wants hosting the Olympics to signal that Russia is a proud and globally-significant nation once again. But what it’s really doing is making the country look like an oversized banana republic, with values that don’t befit a serious world power. Putin is a man of the times alright — as long as the times you’re thinking of are the 19th century.

via Sochi, and Solidarity With the Gay Community | The Business Ethics Blog.

From around the web.

From the web site, York Pen.

“The Anti-gay propaganda law” – the unofficial name for the federal law that banned the “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations among minors” – was adopted by The Duman (Russian parliament) on Tuesday 30th of June 2013 and signed by the Russian president, Vladimir Putin. In a few words, the distribution of information concerning LGBT rights to under-eighteens and within the media is banned and condemned with large fines. Indeed, fines to promote “non-traditional relations” can go up to 5,000 robles (around £90) for individuals and 1 million (around £17000) for organizations (NGOs, corporations etc). Foreigners can also be fined, imprisoned for fifteen days, or deported for breaking the law. The irony in this law is that it does not clearly uses the word “homosexuality”, but instead references “non-traditional sexual relations”, a euphemism prevalent in the Russian Orthodox Church’s discourse. The orthodox church of Russia, an institution that remains prominent and powerful in the devoutly religious country, is clearly hostile of same-sex relationships.

The Sochi Winter Games is an occasion to underline the infringements on human rights for the LGBT community in Russia. Indeed, the LGBT community obtained common rights very late in Russia: same-sex intercourse between consenting adult was only decriminalised in 1993, the possibility for transsexuals to legally change their legal gender came in 1997, the declassification of homosexuality as a mental illness came in 1999, and the age of consent for same-sex intercourse was only reduced to 16 in 2003. Still today, The Government do not recognize same-sex relationships in civil partnership. A law prohibiting gay parades has been condemned by the Strasbourg court in April 2011. The Russian Government banned 164 pride events and marches between 2006 and 2008. Moreover, since the law passed, violent attacks against homosexuals or “presumed homosexuals” are common in Russia today and often go unchecked.