News / USA

Bode Miller Speaks Out Against Russia's Anti-Gay Laws

Olympic alpine skier Bode Miller poses for a portrait during the 2013 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit in Park City, Utah September 30, 2013.
Olympic alpine skier Bode Miller poses for a portrait during the 2013 U.S. Olympic Team Media Summit in Park City, Utah September 30, 2013.
Reuters
— While some athletes danced around commenting on Russia's recent anti-gay legislation, American skiing great Bode Miller met the issue head on by calling next year's Sochi Winter Olympic hosts “ignorant”.
 
Speaking at the United States Olympic Committee (USOC) media summit, the outspoken Miller was very clear on his view of a controversial Russian law which bans the spread of homosexual propaganda among minors.
 
“It is absolutely embarrassing that there are countries and people who are that intolerant, that ignorant,” said Miller, who will be bidding for a place on his fifth U.S. Olympic team.
 
“But it's not the first time we've been dealing with human rights issues since there were humans.”
 
Critics say the law bars all gay rights rallies and could be used to prosecute anyone voicing support for homosexuals. Supporters say the law will help protect children.
 
Earlier, six members of the U.S. figure skating team were also asked their thoughts on the law that has drawn worldwide condemnation and cast a shadow over the buildup to the Feb. 7-23 Winter Games.
 
All of the figure skaters, with the exception of U.S. women's champion Ashley Wagner, danced around the delicate issue, saying they were only athletes and leaving it up to the USOC and International Olympic Committee (IOC) to establish a position.
 
Miller, however, has seldom let anyone else speak for him and has never shied away from controversy during a skiing career that has made him one of the sport's most popular and successful athletes.
 
The five-time Olympic medalist, who once broke away from the U.S. ski federation to form his own team, also had strong words for the USOC and the IOC for not standing up for the values of tolerance and openness they preach in their charters.
 
“I think it's crappy that we don't have a better system dealing with that stuff,” said Miller. “Asking an athlete to go somewhere and compete and be a representative of a philosophy and all the crap that goes along with it and then tell them they can't express their views or say what they believe I think is pretty hypocritical.”
 
“If they let me make the rules I will switch it for you immediately, I can solve a lot of stuff really quickly but unfortunately no one has elected me or given me that kind of power,” said Miller.
 
“My main emotion when I hear about stuff like that is embarrassment. As a human being I think it is embarrassing.”

You May Like

Lebanese Media Unite to Support Palestinians in Gaza

Joint newscast billed as Arab world’s first unified news bulletin in support of Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip More

Photogallery Australian PM Alleges ‘Coverup’ at MH17 Crash Site

Meanwhile, Russia's ambassador to Malaysia denies plane's black boxes were opened before they were handed over to Malaysian officials More

Despite Advances in AIDS Treatment, Stigma Lingers

Leading immunologist tells VOA that stigma is often what prevents those infected with disease from seeking treatment More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Formi
X
July 22, 2014 10:26 AM
Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video IAEA: Iran Turns its Enriched Uranium Into Less Harmful Form

Iran has converted its stockpiles of enriched uranium into a less dangerous form that is more difficult to use for nuclear weapons, according to the United Nations’ Atomic Energy Agency. The move complies with an interim deal reached with Western powers on Iran's nuclear program last year, in exchange for easing of sanctions. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Relic of Saint Draws Catholics Worried About Immigration Issue

A Roman Catholic saint who is a figure of devotion for those crossing the border into the United States is attracting believers concerned about the plight of undocumented immigrants. Mike O'Sullivan reports from Los Angeles, where a relic of Saint Toribio has drawn thousands to local churches.
Video

Video Ukraine Rebels Surrender MH17 Black Boxes

After days of negotiations, a senior separatist leader handed over two black boxes from an airliner downed over eastern Ukraine to Malaysian experts early Tuesday. While on Monday, the U.N. Security Council unanimously demanded that armed groups controlling the crash site allow safe and unrestricted access to the wreckage.
Video

Video In Cambodia, HIV Diagnosis Brings Deadly Shame

Although HIV/AIDS is now a treatable condition, a positive diagnosis is still a life altering experience. In Cambodia, people living with HIV are often disowned by friends, family and the community. This humiliation can be unbearable. We bring you one Cambodian woman’s struggle to overcome a life tragedy and her own HIV positive diagnosis.
Video

Video Nature of Space Exploration Enters New Age

Forty-five years ago this month, the first humans walked on the moon. It was during an era of the space race between the United States and the Soviet Union. World politics have changed since then and -- as Elizabeth Lee reports -- so has the nature of space exploration.
Video

Video Chicago’s Argonne Lab Developing Battery of the Future

In 2012, the U.S. Department of Energy’s Office of Science awarded a $120 million grant to a new technology center focused on battery development - headquartered at Argonne National Laboratory in suburban Chicago, Illinois. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, there scientists are making the next technological breakthroughs in energy storage.
Video

Video In NW Pakistan, Army Offensive Causes Massive Number of Displaced

Pakistan’s army offensive in North Waziristan has resulted in the large-scale displacement of the local population. VOA's Ayaz Gul reports from northwest Pakistan where authorities say around 80 percent of the estimated 1 million internally displaced persons [IDPs] have settled in Bannu district, while much of the remaining 20 percent are scattered in nearby cities.
Video

Video Kurdish Peshmerga Force Secures Kirkuk, Its Oil

The Kurdistan regional government has sent its Peshmerga troops into the adjacent province of Kirkuk to drive out insurgents, and to secure the area's rich oil fields. By doing this, the regional government has added a fourth province to the three it officially controls. The oil also provides revenue that could make an independent Kurdistan economically strong. VOA’s Jeffrey Young went out with the Peshmerga and filed this report.
Video

Video Malaysia Reeling: Second Air Disaster in Four Months

Malaysia is reeling from the second air disaster in four months involving the country’s flag carrier. Flight 340 vanished in March and despite an extensive search, no debris has been found. And on Thursday, Flight 17, likely hit by a surface-to-air missile, came apart over eastern Ukraine. The two incidents together have left more than 500 people dead. VOA Correspondent Steve Herman reports from Kuala Lumpur.

AppleAndroid