Thursday, 6 February 2014

The Sochi Olympics: I will not be part of this

The Winter Olympics in Sochi are, of course, still going ahead. While the campaigning and fighting has drawn a lot of attention, it was never going to stop or change the games because the cishet world has always had many many many more priorities than our lives.

Needless to say, I won’t be watching the games, or having much to do with any coverage focusing on people playing sports rather than the gay bodies they’re stepping over to keep playing – nor do I want anything to do with the huge number of commenters who say they totally oppose homophobia while going to the games unless they are actually going to do something substantial to challenge the homophobia they’re tacitly endorsing.

Because that is what you are doing. Did any of us think that we could pull of a boycott of Sochi? No. Did any of us think we could force Russia to change their laws? No we do not have and never have had that kind of power or that many allies – we’re more than aware of that. Did we hope we would gain some kind of temporary hold or blanket immunity of GBLT travellers during the Olympics? That was never the goal – and frankly it’s nauseating to sign off on Russia temporarily suspending evil persecution while the cameras are pointed their way then go back to blood business as usual when we’re looking away.

The point is that there are some things you don’t want to affiliate with. There are things that are more important than sport, that the lives of GBLT people are worth something. By staying in Sochi, the International Olympic Commission has denied that; by boycotting the Olympics I am rejecting the IOC’s denial of GBLT humanity. We exist and Russia’s creeping attempts to criminalise our existence, to make GBLT people invisible and to tacitly support brutal persecution is not tolerable

I do not want to be part of this:

Mayor of Sochi, Anatoly Pakhomov has declared there aren’t any GBLT people in Sochi at all, so totally no problem right? Ignore those gay bars, Anatoly has declared gay folks non-existent to his straight eyes.

Putin, who can always be relied upon for some vile bigotry, has assured us all that gay people will be safe during the Olympics. So long as gay folk leave the children alone – because we’re all evil child predators, of course. He also believes countries that don’t persecute gay people are considering legalising paedophilia. Putin loves his homophobic hate speech and is a repeat offender.

This is a sentiment that has been shared and repeated by the deputy prime-minister Dmitry Kozak

Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has assured everyone that no gay people have protested about the bigoted laws… showing that he also has the same spectacular cishet disease as Anatoly Pakhomov where gay people are just magically invisible to him.

And a law is brewing to take children from gay parents – to forcibly separate gay families.

Of course, Russian media is playing along – with some almost comically over-dramatic homophobic screeds like this from Pravda – invoking Sodom and Gomorrah and gay people being “terrorists.”

The head of Russian TV news agency, Dmitriy Kiselyov goes further – our bodies and organs need to be burned on death lest they be used in organ donation and poor cishets get tainted by us.

Well, maybe – after this debacle I have zero respect for the Olympics.

A library book is being investigated because it may acknowledge gay families exist – stoke up the book burning. The goal of homophobes is always to render us invisible – if they can’t make us extinct, they like to pretend we are

A gay dating app has been blocked in Russia – and a message added to it threatening users with arrest.

A protestor who dared to hold a rainbow flag has been arrested for that terrible crime of trying to assert GBLT humanity.

3 men have stabbed a man and set him on fire, believing he was gay.

And what has the IOC done about all this?

Well, Thomas Back has loudly spoken against… anyone protesting at the games or distracting from the precious sport by bringing up the pesky lives of gay people. He also creates a wonderful straw man about people expecting the IOC to change Russia’s laws – no, bigot, we expected you NOT TO ENDORSE THEM. You don’t have the power to change laws, you do have the power to give your seal of approval. He also took the opportunity in his New Year address to snidely criticise “politics” and “division” at the Olympics

The last IOC head, Jacques Rogge, doesn’t even think the law is homophobic. After all, straight people can be imprisoned for acknowledging GBLT people exist as well! Totally equal guys!

Canadian IOC member Dick Pound just dismisses the whole thing – after all countries put GBLT people to death so why should the IOC give a damn about a little brutal persecution? Silly gay people getting overexcited!

Several athletes are also annoyed that we’re daring to talk about the persecution of GBLT people which is a total distraction from their fun – like skater Tara Lipinski and pole-vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva, skater Jeremy Abbot and quisling Jonny Weir. And the innumerable others offering complicity with their silence.

And it goes without saying that the godsquad is positively salivating at all this homophobia – the Russian Orthodox church fully supports excluding criminalising being gay – they want to go for full on genocide. FEEL THE CHRISTIAN LOVE!

Of course, much news has been made of various people “snubbing” the games… except they – including Cameron and Obama – have been quick to assure us that it totally has nothing to do with the persecution of GBLT people. So that renders any “snub” pretty pathetically meaningless – but gee thanks cishet leaders for your dedicated concern!

Enjoy your sports. Don’t let the blood distract you.