Chris Pine criticized Russia for passing homophobic legislation banning "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations" while promoting his latest film, Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit, reports the Associated Press.
The 33-year-old actor and LGBT ally called the antigay law "clearly awful, archaic, hostile nonsense," and said he believes the U.S. should have taken a stronger stance against Russia’s antigay policies in the months leading up to the 2014 Winter Games, which are scheduled to begin next month in Sochi.
"I think we should do more than just send gay Olympians there," Pine told the AP. ''What's happening there in terms of gay rights or the lack of it is extraordinary and awful."
President Obama announced in December that neither he, nor Vice President Biden would be in the delegation representing the U.S. at the Winter Olympics in Sochi. Instead, several gay former Olympic athletes will attend in their place, including legendary tennis star and former Olympic coach Billie Jean King, two-time ice hockey Olympic medalist Caitlin Cahow, and figure skating icon Brian Boitano — who publicly came out of the closet in December to add his voice to the chorus of those protesting Russia’s anti-LGBT legislation.
"I am many things: a son, a brother, and uncle, a friend, an athlete, a cook, an author, and being gay is just one part of who I am," Boitano said in a statement last month. "First and foremost I am an American athlete and I am proud to live in a country that encourages diversity, openness and tolerance. As an athlete, I hope we can remain focused on the Olympic spirit which celebrates achievement in sport by peoples of all nations."
The opening ceremony of the Sochi Olympics begins February 7.