Bode Miller says Russian anti-gay law 'ignorant'

PARK CITY, Utah Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:48pm EDT

Gold medallist Bode Miller of the U.S. celebrates during the medals ceremony for the men's super combined alpine skiing event during the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics at Whistler, British Columbia February 21, 2010. REUTERS/Mike Segar

Gold medallist Bode Miller of the U.S. celebrates during the medals ceremony for the men's super combined alpine skiing event during the Vancouver 2010 Winter Olympics at Whistler, British Columbia February 21, 2010.

Credit: Reuters/Mike Segar

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PARK CITY, Utah (Reuters) - While some athletes danced around Russia's anti-gay legislation on Monday American skiing great Bode Miller met the issue head on by calling next year's Sochi Winter Olympic hosts "ignorant."

Speaking at the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) media summit, the outspoken Miller was very clear on his view of a controversial Russian law which bans the spread of homosexual propaganda among minors.

"It is absolutely embarrassing that there are countries and people who are that intolerant, that ignorant, said Miller, who will be bidding for a place on his fifth U.S. Olympic team.

"But it's not the first time we've been dealing with human rights issues since there were humans."

Critics say the law bars all gay rights rallies and could be used to prosecute anyone voicing support for homosexuals while supporters say it will help protect children.

Earlier, six members of the U.S. figure skating team were also asked their thoughts on the law that has drawn worldwide condemnation and cast a shadow over the buildup to the February 7-23 Winter Games.

All of the figure skaters, with the exception of U.S. women's champion Ashley Wagner, danced around the delicate issue saying they were only athletes and leaving it up to the USOC and International Olympic Committee (IOC) to establish a position.

Miller, however, has seldom let anyone else speak for him and has never shied away from controversy during a skiing career that has made him one of the sport's most popular and successful athletes.

The five-time Olympic medallist, who once broke away from the U.S. ski federation to form his own team, also had a shot for the USOC and the IOC for not standing up for the values of tolerance and openness they preach in their charters.

"I think it's crappy that we don't have a better system dealing with that stuff," said Miller. "Asking an athlete to go somewhere and compete and be a representative of a philosophy and all the crap that goes along with it and then tell them they can't express their views or say what they believe I think is pretty hypocritical.

"If they let me make the rules I will switch it for you immediately, I can solve a lot of stuff really quickly but unfortunately no one has elected me or given me that kind of power.

"My main emotion when I hear about stuff like that is embarrassment. As a human being I think it is embarrassing."

(Editing by Frank Pingue)

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Comments (1)
PedroZozaya wrote:
Dirty gay-propaganda.

This law is not against gay propaganda. This law protects children. Russia has imposed fines (money) for the “promotion of homosexuality AMONG CHILDREN.” Citizens of other countries can be arrested for 15 days (before deportation). Nobody homosexuals does not put outlaws. They can even “propagandize”, but among adults.

You need to call a spade a spade. People who oppose “anti-gay law”, actually support gay propaganda AMONG CHILDREN (Russians children). That is, they support gay-pedophiles.

If Americans really worried “gay rights”, then one would have to start with China and the Arab countries, U.S. allies. There real problems in homosexuals, but the Americans on this a blind eye and on political reasons foment “anti-Russian hysteria.”

It is ridiculous to read Americans hypocrites. In America, still in some states there is criminalized homosexual acts. In America there is banned organ transplants homosexuals. And you criticize Russia? Ha. American hypocrisy has no limits!

Shame!

Oct 02, 2013 8:39am EDT  --  Report as abuse
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