I won;t be watching as I don't have a TV, but I am interested to know what everyone thinks about the controversy surrounding the games being held in Russia at all, given their rather awful track record when it comes to LGBT rights. What do people think?
I heard a bird cry, sharp and free. My name is Jordan.
As I understand it, Russia doesn't have a ban on gay people, it is clamping down on LGBT protests.
I wonder what the reaction would be if I gathered 20 of my friends in the UK, travelled to America and started a protest march in favour of gun control on Capitol Hill. Would I be allowed to protest, would there be violence, would I even get out of there alive?
I'm not sure what the situation was eight years ago when the Olympic authorities awarded the games to Russia but I imagine there were very few LGBT rights at the time in the free world. Since then, the UK and much of Europe has changed but Russia has not. So why do we think we have a right to complain? The time to make a protest was at the time the games were awarded.
There is, too, the issue of sovereignty. A country's sovereignty trumps its human rights. If it were not so, America would be forced to abandon the death sentence and would be obliged to implement universal health care, both of which are human rights. Since LGBT is not yet a human right, Russia is perfectly entitled to take whatever stance it wishes.
Russia has a long history of quashing protests, especially by foreigners. In the 1960s, CND supporters visited Moscow and tried to start a protest movement in favour of nuclear disarmament. Within seconds of displaying their banners, supposedly ordinary people on the street pounced on them and stopped them. It's hardly surprising then that Putin is clamping down on foreign protest movements in Socci. As I see it, protests in your own country are fine but it is impertinent to protest in another country on any issue other than a human right. How would we feel if a group of Russians came over to Edinburgh and campaigned for Scottish independence?
Ten years or so ago, I stated my views in support of the gay community in the Wardrobe and my position hasn't changed since then.
No, it wasn't Florida, but Georgia, just to the north...Atlanta, I believe, which hosted some Olympics or another. 'Bomb Threat' Olympics. In the US.
At the Atlanta Games it was more than a threat, it actually was a bombing. Fortunately, it claimed only 1 life and injured 100+, but it could have been much worse. I was there about a week later and security was very tight.
I thought some of the other earlier controversy surrounding Sochi was that it's a fairly moderate climate, and not necessarily good for winter sports. Indeed, there was rain one day, and numerous days with temps well over freezing.
It is not just the homophobic laws against "homo propaganda" (would it be against the law for a homosexueal couple to hold hands?) but the treatment of the migrant workers who built the olympics in Sochi:
I saw a TV programme about this. One worker who complained of not getting paid for his work was taken by the police, tortured and shove an iron pipe up his - you get the picture. Of course, the Russian police is both brutal and corrupted.
We are famous for "Stockholm syndrome": "Q: Hey, what's up with Matt? His Dad is on social security, his mom got laid off, his sister's kids get free school lunches, he collects federal financial aid for college, and he only makes minimum wage working at Walmarts. Yet he keeps talking about how we need to cut taxes for the wealthy and quit spending so much on social programs. A: Yeah, he thinks he's going to be a millionaire soon. He's got Economic Stockholm Syndrome." (Urban Dictionary)