Last week, Democratic U.S. Sen. Chuck Schumer publicly ridiculed Russian president Vladimir Putin over his support of the country's recent anti-gay legislation, calling him a "schoolyard bully". RiaNovosti reports that, yesterday, during an episode of MSNBC's Morning Joe, Schumer expanded on his critical remarks, and called for LGBT athletes participating in the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi to wave rainbow flags:
"When we march initially, all the countries should wave the multicolored flag for gay rights. That would be pretty embarrassing for Putin, let our athletes participate and still take a stand."
Schumer's words sought to address questions as to whether the United States or the International Olympic Commission should boycott Russia for any upcoming games, including the ones scheduled for 2014. "All these athletes train for so long," he said, adding that, "standing up to Putin right now is important because he’s a bully."
"He resents being an old KGB guy, being brought up when the Soviet Union and the US went head to head...He resents that Russia is no longer the major power in the world that it used to be. Its population, of course, with all the states – Ukraine, all the Baltic states, the east Asian states gone -- they’re no longer a big power."