A group of LGBT Russians is planning a major gathering this winter in spite of the the country's controversial law that bans so-called propaganda that sheds a positive light on LGBT people. This gathering, however, is for sports.
The Open Games will be a gay-friendly version of the Olympics, held in Moscow three days after the Olympic Games in Sochi this February. Athletes of any sexual orientation will be welcome to compete in eight events, including basketball, badminton, and indoor soccer, according to The New York Times.
“The law does not cover us because we are not doing propaganda of homosexuality, but propaganda of sport and a healthy lifestyle,” Viktor Romanov of the Russian LGBT Sport Federation told Agence France-Presse Monday. ”We aren’t breaking the law.”
Konstantin Yablotskiy, a figure skater and president of the organization, said his organization held a similar event right after St. Petersburg enacted its own version of the propaganda law in 2012.
"We all painted rainbows on our cheeks, walked around the city and rode the metro," he said to the Times. "Children saw us, but no one said anything. Was that ‘propaganda?’"