James Kirchick Takes On Russia Today On Gay Rights


James Kirchick with his rainbow braces has gone viral as he hijacked an assembled panel to talk about gay rights in Russia rather than what he was presumably paid to, the sentencing of Brad Manning:

I thought it might be worth seeing some Russia Today coverage as well:

Covering Stephen Fry call for a boycott of Olympic event:

In an article on their website they quoted the Russian Sports Minister:

[Mutko] also accused the Western media of overplaying the anti-gay issue, while saying that Russia wanted to protect its children from the propaganda of “drug addiction, alcohol abuse and non-traditional sexual orientation.”

Media coverage of the Athletics Championships, which closed Sunday in Moscow, has been overshadowed in the West by comments over Russia’s “gay propaganda law.”

Clearly that deserved condemning to a Russian audience that comparison. He was given more than the two minutes he wanted to talk about anti-gay legislation. Then he continued to refuse to talk about what he had been invited to discuss. In his rant featured above he made no such direct points on legislation instead critiquing Russia Today (hope he did later but I doubt it). Open opportunity given to him by the programme to discuss and frankly he blew it. Sorry, he made himself the story here not what is happening in Russia.

The story being that homosexuality is like being a drug user or an alcoholic according to the Russian Government – a social scourge to be discouraged. That needed articulating.

In the second video above what is happening in Russia is compared to Section 28 in the UK about banning the promotion of homosexuality in school. In 2003 it was repealed by a Labour Government.

However, only yesterday The Independent reported:

Campaigners have identified more than 40 schools across the country that stress in their sex-education guidelines that governors will not allow teachers to “promote” homosexuality, or are ambiguous on the issue.

The campaigner Peter Tatchell said: “This is spookily similar to Section 28 in Britain and the new anti-gay law in Russia. These schools are abusing their new freedoms to pressure teachers to teach gay issues in a way that will discourage them from saying anything positive that could be construed as ‘promotion’.”

Any mention of this by Jamie Kirchick on Twitter? Er, no at time of publishing this post.

Only a matter of time I am sure. Brace yourself.

Follow Up Post: Clarifying My James Kirchick Post

Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog

Follow @JPSargeant78

My Huffington Post Blog


Filed under British Politics, British Society, World

2 responses to “James Kirchick Takes On Russia Today On Gay Rights

  1. Thought I would cross post a comment of mine from Harry’s Place:

    That was my intention to show how RT deal with. The panel discussion last Monday referred to in first video had not been uploaded yet when I initially posted.

    The kudos would have been there if – as James stated himself – stuck to two minutes then got on with Manning.

    It was not the stand but the – I am going to keep talking who cares about Manning discussion and other panelists – which reduced the impact for me.

    What he did rather than issues raised was my fear would happen in media. Hence uploading videos, and discussing what RT reported Sport’s Minister saying.

    Just felt like publicity seeking rather than consciousness raising. Which seems to be the way this is going not the actual issues happening in Russia.

    James has become the story.


  2. Pingback: Clarifying My James Kirchick Post | Homo economicus' Weblog

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