Friday, August 9, 2013

Stephen Fry to British Government and IOC: "An Absolute Ban on the Russian Winter Olympics of 2014 on Sochi Is Simply Essential"

Not to be missed as this work week ends: Stephen Fry's impassioned, articulate open letter to David Cameron and the International Olympics Committee pleading for an absolute ban on the winter olympics in Russia, because "Putin cannot be seen to have the approval of the civilised world" since "[h]e is making scapegoats of gay people, just as Hitler did Jews." Fry writes:

I am gay. I am a Jew. My mother lost over a dozen of her family to Hitler’s anti-Semitism. Every time in Russia (and it is constantly) a gay teenager is forced into suicide, a lesbian "correctively" raped, gay men and women beaten to death by neo-Nazi thugs while the Russian police stand idly by, the world is diminished and I for one, weep anew at seeing history repeat itself.

As Alan McCornick notes at his Hepzibah blog site, Fry displays real courage in speaking out in this unambiguous way at this moment in history. I wholeheartedly agree with Alan that Fry is one of the good 'uns when it comes to human rights and the artistic community.

P.S. (Later): I'm just now seeing this valuable article by Martin Pengelly in The Guardian that Chris Morley recommended in a comment here yesterday. As Chris notes, Pengelly maintains that President Obama and Stephen Fry have history on their side in their call for a ban on the Russian Olympics, while Russia continues its attacks on its gay citizens. Pengelly states, "The IOC does not tolerate political discrimination based on race or gender. It should not tolerate political discrimination based on sexuality. Russia should not host the 2014 Winter Olympic Games."

And he's right.

No comments: