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Content about the Olympics

March 6, 2014

Victor Voronov asks that charges be dropped stemming from domestic dispute before the Olympics

Johnny Weir talked figure skating at the Olympics and fashion at the Oscars.

One thing he wasn't talking about was his date with a judge stemming from a police report husband Victor Voronov filed accusing Weir of biting him during a domestic dispute.

The couple, who married in December 2011, appeared in Lyndhurst Municipal Court in New Jersey this week (4 March) and asked a judge to dismiss the case, according to RadarOnline.

March 4, 2014

'Basically, it's OK to hate now and you can get away with it'

Reflecting in her whirlwind trip to the Olympics in Sochi last month, sports icon Billie Jean King left inspired by the athletes but worried about the gay people who live in Russia.

King, 70, spent three days in Russia and attended the closing ceremonies as part of the official US delegation to the games.

While there, she met with a Russian teen who is gay and is getting bullied in an atmosphere where an anti-gay propaganda law has led to an increase in violence.

February 28, 2014

LGTBI activist Sarah Gibson explains why the International Olympic Committee must reconsider its views on transgender and intersex athletes

Much to the dismay of Russia, the Sochi games will not be remembered for its extravagant spending but for the opposition to Russia’s continuing human rights abuses against LGBTI people. 

In the run up to the games, principle 6 of the Olympic Charter has been widely quoted.

It reads: 'Any form of discrimination with regard to a country or a person on grounds of race, religion, politics, gender or otherwise is incompatible with belonging to the Olympic Movement'.

February 24, 2014

Cher said no, and the world listened. From ballet demonstrations to national commercials, from tweets to open letters, here are the 14 ways the world came together for the Russian LGBTI community

Did you pour your Stoli vodka down a drain, or stop eating McDonald’s during the Winter Olympics?

In recent months Russia has been at the center of a civil rights firestorm, between president Putin signing anti-gay laws to politicians threatening LGBTI Olympic athletes and spectators.

Even though the Sochi Winter Olympics wrapped up this weekend, the reactions to Russia's anti-gay laws are still being seen, heard and felt around the world.

February 21, 2014

Canada's Denny Morrison: 'I've done some not-nice things in my time. I think I've grown a lot more since then'

Canadian speed skater Denny Morrison won silver and bronze medals at the Olympics in Sochi - all while sponsored by a gay bar.

The two-time world record breaker is sponsored by Twisted Element, a gay bar in Calgary.

There was a time when the 28 year old would not have been so thrilled about such an affiliation.

'I grew up in a small town and had been teased about my sport, being a figure skater, wearing spandex, calling me names and insinuating I was gay,' Morrison said in an interview this week with with the CBC.

February 19, 2014

Star Trek icon tells GSN: “This Olympics is really a chilling thing because it reminds me of the 1936 Olympics when the Olympics Committee provided an international platform for Adolf Hitler'

George Takei has been watching some of the Olympics in Sochi even though he strongly believes they never should have been allowed to be held in a country with an anti-gay propaganda law in place.

The openly gay Star Trek icon tells Gay Star News that he considers the International Olympic Committee 'spineless' for not moving the games after it was clear that 'Russia breaks the pledge to the Olympic creed of no discrimination.'

February 19, 2014

Berlin’s guardians of the Rainbow Flame appeal for people to show solidarity to the LGBTI protestors in Russia

One brave trans woman has stood up to Russia’s gay hate in Sochi, and it’s time to say thank you.

Vladimir Luxuria’s story has spread worldwide after she defied the Russian authorities at the Olympics and openly spoke out for LGBTI people.

February 18, 2014

IOC spokesman says countries who do not abide by an anti-discrimination rule could factor in decisions on the bidding process

Russia, and other countries with homophobic laws, could be banned from hosting the Olympics under a proposed new rule.

The International Olympics Committee has responded to calls that countries must abide by a specific anti-discrimination decree modelled on the Olympic Charter’s Principle 6.

Principle 6 says sport does not discriminate on any grounds, including race, religion, politics or gender.

February 17, 2014

Bravo's Watch What Happens Live host says his 'blood boils' whenever he sees Putin on TV

Andy Cohen, the openly gay host of Bravo channel's What What Happens Live talk show, refered to Russian President Vladimir Putin as a 'bastard' in an interview over the weekend.

During a piece on LGBTI equality on NBC's Meet the Press, Cohen was asked about Putin inadvertently hugging a gay gold medal speed skater from Holland.

Replied Cohen: 'We all get carried away in the magic and pageantry of the Olympics. I mean, wouldn’t it be great if that bastard did too? I mean, it would be. He put on a huge show. Learn something from it.'

February 17, 2014

Vladimir Luxuria was arrested in the southern city of Russia for holding up a sign for saying 'Gay Is OK'

While she may have just spent a few hours detained in a Russian police station, the trans activist and former MP is determined to continue making a political statement against anti-gay laws.

Vladimir Luxuria, a former politician in the Italian parliament, was arrested in Sochi while holding a waving flag saying ‘Gay Is OK’ in Russian.

‘I've been freed and tomorrow I'll watch the Games,’ the 48-year-old advocate wrote in a text message, according to the ANSA news agency.

February 14, 2014

Johnny Weir has spoken out how figure skating is viewed as feminine in the US, but masculine in Russia

Both gay and straight ice skaters have spoken out against the homophobic bullying they face in the sport.

As the world’s eye is on Russia and the anti-gay laws LGBTI people face there, some may look to figure skating as the gay oasis in a desert of homophobia.

February 12, 2014

Austria’s Daniela Iraschko-Stolz says she hopes to create positive conversation surrounding the outrage over the Russia Winter Olympics

Austria’s Daniela Iraschko-Stolz became the first openly gay athlete to medal at Russia’s Winter Games yesterday (11 February).

She came second in the first ever women’s ski jump competition at the Olympics.

Iraschko-Stolz actually jumped the furthest in the final, flying through their air on her second jump for 104.5m (343 feet).

But the gold was awarded to German Carina Vogt after the Austrian’s points score was calculated to accommodate an advantage she had in wind speed.

February 8, 2014

Lesbian BBC reporter Clare Balding has responded to tweets attacking her coverage of the Winter Olympics 

Lesbian BBC sports presenter Clare Balding hits back at Twitter trolls attacking her for going to work at the Winter Olympics in Sochi.

Balding, 43, faced criticism, some of it homophobic, after it was revealed she would be part of the team covering the Olympics.

Some felt she should use the opportunity to speak out against anti-gay Russia whereas others thought she agreed to go to Sochi purely for the money.

One Twitter user said: ‘principles before profit time?’

February 8, 2014

GLAAD praises spots as truly reflecting 'the fabric of our nation, which today includes gay and lesbian families'

The Russian government may be busy cracking down on any public display of support of homosexuality as the Olympics kick off in Sochi, but it has no control over what airs on NBC.

The US broadcaster of the 2014 Winter Olympics aired two commercials from car company Chevrolet that could never air in Russia due to its anti-gay propaganda law.

They feature families with same-sex couples and aired during NBC's tape-delayed telecast of opening ceremonies which took place earlier in the day on Friday (7 February).

February 8, 2014

Since the Winter Olympics began, Russian police have arrested 61 people for speaking out against the Olympics

61 people have been arrested by the Russian police for speaking out against the Olympics so far.

The New York Times reports that of the 61 arrests, 23 of them were gay rights protestors.

The first of these arrests came yesterday (7 February) when four protesters, one of whom was a pregnant woman, gathered in St. Petersburg to protest the anti-gay laws currently in place in Russia.

They held a flag quoting Principle 6 of the Olympic Charter, which says any form of discrimination is contrary to the ideals of the Olympics.

February 7, 2014

The London Gay Men's Chorus sang for three hours outside Russian Embassy in London

The London Gay Men’s Chorus sang for equality today while the opening ceremony of the Winter Olympics kicked off in Sochi.

With talk of the Olympics having been overshadowed by Russia’s LGBTI laws, the chorus decided to take a stand.

Steven McIntyre, one of the group’s trustees and the organiser of the protest, said: 'What we wanted to do was say, "look, we understand that the Olympics bring people together, but this Olympics is excluding people, and that’s not okay".'

February 7, 2014

Dutch prime minister and Russian president meet despite extreme tension between the two countries following assaults and humiliation

President Vladimir Putin has told the world the Olympics is not the place to discuss Russia’s treatment of gay people.

In a meeting with Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte, the Russian president demanded politics and sport should not mix.

‘I know you always give much attention to humanitarian issues and adherence to human rights,’ Putin said, according to Reuters.

‘We are always open to discussion.’

February 7, 2014

Read the amazing speech from the ‘gay Olympic opening ceremony’ condemning Russian hate and the IOC

An alternative Olympic ceremony has seen a Rainbow Flame lit in Berlin to be tended day and night throughout the games, as a symbol of hope for LGBTI rights in Russia.

Here is an exclusive translation of the speech made by Alfonso Pantisano at the lighting ceremony:

Dear friends, welcome to Potsdamer Platz in Berlin.

February 7, 2014

Canadian cities including Ottawa and Vancouver have also raised pride flags support gay rights during the Olympics in Russia

Toronto Mayor Bob Ford, usually in the headlines for his drug and alcohol use, is now making a fuss over a rainbow pride flag that is flying over city hall.

He wants it taken down.

'It’s not about someone’s sexual preference,' he told reporters Friday (7 January) outside his office. 'No, I do not agree with putting up the rainbow flag. We should put our Canadian flag up.'

February 6, 2014

British TV channel goes where Coke, McDonalds and Visa have refused to tread and rebrands itself with rainbow colors for the Winter Olympics

British TV station Channel 4 will be rainbow branded in the colors of the gay pride flag tomorrow (7 February) to mark the start of the Sochi Olympics.

They have also launched a tongue-in-cheek promo with a hairy ‘gay bear style’ cabaret act singing a celebratory ‘Gay Mountain’ song honoring all the athletes.

Channel 4 is the official broadcaster of the Paralympics, while the BBC has the contract for the Olympics themselves.

They will be wishing all athletes at the games, gay or straight, good luck on their TV trail.

February 5, 2014

A new pop anthem will be performed live at the lighting of Berlin’s alternative gay Olympic flame

Berliners have created a new pop anthem to fight Russia’s anti-gay law and champion the Rainbow Flame they will be lighting during the Olympics.

The song, Love Is Not For Propaganda, is now available for purchase from the iTunes store. All proceeds will be donated to LGBTI projects in Russia.

February 5, 2014

Tennis legend forced to drop out of US delegation to be with her ill 91-year-old mother

Billie Jean King, one of the most famous lesbians in the world, will not be at Friday's opening ceremonies at the Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.

The 70-year-old tennis legend, President Obama's high-profile appointment to the official US delegation, has decided to stay home to be with her ailing mother.

'It is important for me to be with my mother and my brother at this difficult time,' King said in a statement.

February 5, 2014

Protests will take place in 19 cities around the world including London, New York and St Petersburg

A call is being sent out around the world to protest against Russia’s anti-gay laws today (5 February).

Held two days before the Winter Olympics begins in Sochi, the protestors will call on sponsors to speak out over Russia’s gay propaganda ban.

Protests are expected to take place in 19 cities around the globe, including London, New York, Paris and St Petersburg.

Sponsors of the Olympic Games include Coca Cola, McDonalds and Visa.

February 1, 2014

'We do need to take care of where we allow the Olympics to go'

Greg Louganis has consistently been against the idea of boycotting the 2014 Olympics in Sochi because of Russia's anti-gay laws.

But that doesn't mean the openly gay Olympic diving legend is thrilled the games are being held next month in a country where it is against the law to openly show support of homosexuality in any way.