Posted January 27, 2014

Sochi mayor claims there are no gay people in the city

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Vladimir Putin

Vladimir Putin’s stance on gay rights has become a lightning rod ahead of the Olympics. (ALEXEI NIKOLSKY/AFP/Getty Images)

Anatoly Pakhomov, the mayor of 2014 Winter Olympics host-city Sochi, said that there are no gay people in his city, according to BBC News.

Pakhomov, a member of President Vladimir Putin’s United Russia party, said that homosexuality is not welcome in his region, but that it would welcome gay people with “hospitality” if they respect Russian laws.

From the BBC report:

“Our hospitality will be extended to everyone who respects the laws of the Russian Federation and doesn’t impose their habits on others,” he said.

But when asked whether gay people had to hide their sexuality in Sochi, the Mayor said: “No, we just say that it is your business, it’s your life. But it’s not accepted here in the Caucasus where we live. We do not have them in our city.”

When challenged, the mayor admitted that he was not certain there were no gay people in Sochi: “I am not sure, but I don’t bloody know them.”

But the report goes on to say that BBC Panorama reporter John Sweeney went to a gay bar in Sochi the night before interviewing Pakhomov. One patron at the bar told Sweeney that there are two gay clubs in Sochi, and many others across Russia.

Boris Nemtsov, the former Deputy Prime Minister and now an opposition party leader, scoffed at Pakhomov’s claim.

“As far as I know there are several gay clubs in Sochi,” he said. “How do they survive? Why they are not bankrupt?”

Russia’s recent history with gay-rights issues has become a lightning rod ahead of the 2014 Olympics. In June, Putin signed into law a ban on propaganda of ”nontraditional sexual relations” to minors, which has provoked widespread international outrage.

Last week, Putin said that gay visitors should feel “at ease” during the Olympics. But, oddly, he included in his statement a plea to “leave the children in peace” and appeared to conflate homosexuality and pedophilia.

MORE COVERAGE: Protestors allege NBC silence on Russian gay-rights violations >


209 comments
GravitysGone
GravitysGone

I find it amusing how the Neocons hate gays so much that they are defending a renowned communist, I thought Muricans hated commies? I guess commies are terrible until they say something that they agree with, then they are cool. 

JeffreyJohnson1
JeffreyJohnson1

They fear us, but their fear makes us stronger. They learn to hate us but we grow stronger with every hateful act. If even one of us is denied human rights the next person could be you or your kids. We fight for all humans and our rights. Luckily the ark of history bends towards justice and human dignity.


"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win". Gandhi

JeffreyJohnson1
JeffreyJohnson1

I lost track this time; is it the Jews, Blacks, Muslims, Gays, Whites, Red Heads, left handed people, ect....... that we all need to hate on? Please help!

FOOLKILLER
FOOLKILLER

SO what we're gathering from the comments here is that gay is straight and straight is gay.

Joseph Rodocker
Joseph Rodocker

President Putin I totally agree with you and commend you for speaking your opinion firmly on this matter! The sissyfied United States of America has laid down any level of Testosterone that we were once notorious for. It makes me sick to my stomach to hear gays valling this a human rights issue. Just them even uttering those words are a slap in the face to TRUE HUMAN RIGHTS MOVEMENTS! Ask the family of Jews who were lined up to be mudered in droves if homosexual rights is human rights, ask the orphaned black 8 year old boy who watched his mother and father tortured under the imprisonment of slavery if homosexual rights is really human rights, ask Martin Luther King Jr., ask John Brown, the true men and women that really built USA into a powerhouse.... sadly it is not so now. And you President Putin are what we were 40 years ago at the peak of our own lifespan.

WbfHaddock
WbfHaddock

He just meant that no one will SAY they are gay in his city. 

ILoveMyWife
ILoveMyWife

Enough talk about sex already. Can we just discuss the sports part of the Olympics? Certain interest groups are detracting from the athletes and making the games about themselves.

JackHoff
JackHoff

Putin looks a little light in the shoe in that polaroid.

DiegoCerda419
DiegoCerda419

clearly wasn't counting the male figure skaters in that statement

JackHoff
JackHoff

If Russell Wilson moves there then that statement will be false.

makemention
makemention

The only issue is that Olympics are supposed to provide a PAUSE from war


they need to do that at least

TimHarb
TimHarb

Well I guess he forgot about some of the Olympians lol.

Water-Faery
Water-Faery

If the Mayor of Sochi and President Putin put as much time and energy into security as they do worrying over gay people, more Americans might actually feel safe enough to GO over there!

kenc29
kenc29

I'm waiting for Putin to come out of the closet. We all know those that are the most homophobic...

WilyCoyoteSuperGenius
WilyCoyoteSuperGenius

That is the funniest (and most naive/stupid) statement I have read in a long time. You have plenty of gay people in your medieval throwback of a city/country, but they are too terrified to be out. Frankly Putin looks to me to be a classic closet case. I pity the ordinary Russians who have to suffer under the rule of these posturing alpha males.

Joseph Rodocker
Joseph Rodocker

If they are here, I dont bloody know them! Ha! That statement alone cracks me up!

Jeff Johnson you are so off based its funny, but hey i dont care... it dont effect me at all..... there is no disease following me around because I dont play stickball. Lol. But dont you think for one second tbat John Brown Americans are gone. We are simply the Republican Party in sheep clothing! So yoh are absolutely correct - the ark of history bends towards justice and human dignity, thats exactly why slavery is not legal in america any longer, that is exactly why native amerucans need to be paid retribution for the first american terrorism act, and THAT is exactly why the real americans will not just stand idle while this homisexual filth is put on tv, or openly exposed to the public as if it is morally ok. We wil never stand for this and will fight with both physical and monetary power to keep america built on human rights and religious foundations. The real american is prepared for war at all times and sometimes I salivate at the opportunity to stand for what MLK, John Brown, JFK, Abraham Lincoln, and countless others who saw the true vision of America worked and sacraficed so hard to get us where we are now.... moral corruption takes care of itself though so there will be no battle....

muser
muser

@JeffreyJohnson1 Comparing gays with Jews and blacks only makes your cause seem more absurd. 

JeffreyJohnson1
JeffreyJohnson1

@Joseph Rodocker why do you piss on the graves of every patriot and good person that fought and died for our freedoms? Why are you so bitter that you cannot see that freedom denied to one group of people is freedom denied to all people? At the end of the day it is hate filled people just like you that make the fight for freedom that much sweeter. Thanks for making us stronger with every post. Remember some of us stand for freedom and justice for all. Luckily the ark of history bends toward justice and equality. 

AllThingsConsidered
AllThingsConsidered

@Joseph Rodocker There are a few hilarious nuggets in this certifiably insane post, so it's still  worth rummaging through the garbage for a few laughs.


By the way, the peak of America was probably for you the McCarthy era, so that would be more like 65 year ago.  

stabmasterarson21
stabmasterarson21

@NoQNoSuperBowl That they don't have and why would they want that, their pro league does better than that crap league, LMAO.  Guess where some WNBA players go to play in their off-season?

AllThingsConsidered
AllThingsConsidered

@ILoveMyWife I'd rather not read about that all the time on SI.com either, but I think you got your culprit confused. The gays/gay rights supporter never asked for this issue to come in the forefront. Have you ever heard them before at any other Olympics? The sole responsible is Putin and his crackdown on gay rights

KeithP.DeWeese
KeithP.DeWeese

@JackHoffYes, I thought the same.  Definitely a "come hither, boys," expression.  This man is just so afraid of...?

FOOLKILLER
FOOLKILLER

@JackHoff lol that perm did make him look a little flamboyant. Wouldn't surprise me if he follows in Aaron Rodgers shoes and comes out.

muser
muser

@Water-Faery What makes you think he's worried about gays at all? He was asked a question by a reporter who was, that's all. 

makemention
makemention

@kenc29 you really think he's THAT cute do you that you would do him ?


I bet his GF would kick your AZZ

muser
muser

@kenc29 Another gay supporter who fires his nastiest insult at someone who isn't accepting enough of gays.....calling them...gay..

muser
muser

@WilyCoyoteSuperGenius Another gay supporter tries to insult someone who isn't accepting enough by calling them something they must believe to be despicable......gay........What does that say about your inner psyche?

AaronDunckel
AaronDunckel

@JeffreyJohnson1why can't people define themselves by their beliefs about government, origins of life, war, or law... rather than by who they have sex with - because personally I dont care and also dont care to hear about other people's sex lives no matter what direction they go. 


Thats most of the issue that people have with the gay community (outside of religious reasons).

rh2000
rh2000

@JeffreyJohnson1    To quote you "They fear us, but their fear makes us stranger" ???  LOL 


I don't fear you in any way!  Yes you are strange but that is your choice!  Now go away I have no more time for you

RomarioDelLago
RomarioDelLago

@JeffreyJohnson1- LOL...yeah, your biologically antithetical and immoral behavior makes you extremely noble.  Keep your perverse bizarre lifestyle CHOICE to yourself.  Thanks.

muser
muser

@JeffreyJohnson1  YO might want to change that and post it again...They fear us, but their fear makes us stranger. Maybe you meant stronger. Nice thoughts otherwise. 

Joseph Rodocker
Joseph Rodocker

I dont know what the hell you are takking about. But my ancestors stood for human righys equality! Being gay is not a human right. Period. Being an african american is a human right, being a asian american is a human right, being a jewish american is a human right, being an indian american is a human right, being awoman ibercoming suppresion is a human right. Choosing to go to share a bed with someone who looks just as goofy as you do is NOT a human right. Its just simply an extremely poor choice, oh by the way what is that disease called when two caucasian, african, asian, spanish, french, indian, russian, german, or any other man and woman get when have sexual relations? Thats right there isnt one..... but when two of the same sex regardless of origin sleep together what is that disease? Like the cats from my neighborhood used to say "thats gayer than aids" LMAO!

JackHoff
JackHoff

@unitcaptain11 @JackHoff Sorry you were offended that I insulted your boyfriend. I give you propers for having his back though, you're his knight in shining armor. Well done lad.

Jed1
Jed1

Typical homophobic respone...

KeithP.DeWeese
KeithP.DeWeese

@muser@WilyCoyoteSuperGeniusmuser, keep saying stupid things...it's a good way to open the "sad window into the real psyche" of the straight community. 

Of course, just because you keep repeating yourself in your support of this idiot mayor and the brute Putin doesn't mean I'm actually going to believe that all heterosexuals are like you and the Russian stooges.

JeffreyJohnson1
JeffreyJohnson1

@AaronDunckel @JeffreyJohnson1 We define ourselves in many ways, one being freedom fighters, but It has everything to do with whom one falls in love with, you said it was all about sex, not me.       I see you seem to be in love. Congrats! 

KeithP.DeWeese
KeithP.DeWeese

@AaronDunckel@JeffreyJohnson1Aaron, how many gays do you hear telling you about their sex lives?  I'm mean, seriously, dude, what movies, magazines, newspapers, etc. are YOU reading?  And does your girlfriend/wife know?

muser
muser

@Jed1 Why is that homophobic? I would suggest that if, as stated, Putin's GF can really kick his behind, the very little to fear...

muser
muser

@KeithP.DeWeese  What you ignore is that gays think so little of themselves that they believe that calling someone gay is an insult. I'm not here to hate them. I'm here to ask why the gay community denies them help. 

muser
muser

@sanitarium869 So it's a gesture of concern? You're full of crap. It's the gay man's way of saying that you might be gay too. It's an insult.  A sad window into the real psyche of they gay community.