Russia's sports minister Vitaly Mutko on Thursday told world athletics championship contenders to "relax" about his country's anti-gay propaganda law and said their private lives were safe during the Aug. 10-18 Moscow event.
I write in the earnest hope that all those with a love of sport and the Olympic spirit will consider the stain on the Five Rings that occurred when the 1936 Berlin Olympics proceeded under the exultant aegis of a tyrant who had passed into law, two years earlier, an act which singled out for special persecution a minority whose only crime was the accident of their birth. Putin is eerily repeating this insane crime.
President Obama shared with Jay Leno his frustration with anti-LGBT laws like those enacted in Russia just before the Sochi Winter Olympics. When asked about Russia's anti-gay law, the president responded, "I have no patience for countries that try to treat gays or lesbians or transgender persons in ways that intimidate them or are harmful to them."
Staff and members of All Out will deliver a petition with more than 300,000 signatures to the International Olympic Committee. All Out will also provide a letter from British actor Stephen Fry and thousands of signatures from Athlete Ally supporters, including Four Time Olympic Gold Medalist and Athlete Ally Ambassador Greg Louganis and other former Olympians to the International Olympic Committee headquarters.