There have been many expressions of displeasure with Russian president Vladimir Putin’s anti-gay laws. Some have been relatively quiet. I’m thinking of openly gay Bravo television chief and host Andy Cohen’s decision to boycott emceeing the Miss Universe pageant in Moscow this November. And then there’s openly gay American journalist Jamie Kirchick, who took his displeasure with Russia’s homophobic laws to heroic new heights during an interview on the Russia Today television show.
When the hosts went to Kirchick in his Stockholm studio, he donned a pair of rainbow “gay pride suspenders” and spent the next two minutes decrying the anti-gay laws and condemning the reporters he said were ignoring the laws’ impact on gay men and lesbians in Russia — instead of talking about Bradley Manning, as was expected.
I’m not really interested in talking about Bradley Manning. I’m interested in talking about the horrific environment of homophobia in Russia right now, and to let the Russian gay people know that they have friends and allies in solidarity from people all over the world, and that we’re not going to be silenced in the face horrific repression that is perpetrated by your paymaster, Vladimir Putin. That’s what I’m here to talk about.
Kirchick went on to say, “You have 24 hours a day to lie about the United States and to ignore what’s going on in Russia. You have 24 hours a day to do that. I’m going to take my two minutes and tell people the truth.”
Follow Jonathan Capehart on Twitter.