Nothing good can come from Johnny Weir

It’s time we stopped pretending that every guy who sucks d*ck, as my friend Dan Savage would put it, is somehow an instant expert on our civil rights. Johnny Weir is living proof that you can be de jure pro-gay, and de facto anti-gay, at the same time.

Through the coverage of the growing international brouhaha over Russia’s anti-gay “propaganda” law and Russia’s imminent hosting of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, the media has had a bit of a thing for asking former gay-Olympian Johnny Weir for his opinion on the entire mess.  And Weir’s answers have been just that, a bit of a mess.

In addition to be a former Olympian, and gay, Weir’s husband is of Russian descent. So he’s been kind of a trifecta of inanity for the media.  And he’s lived up to expectations.

Weir in a Russian military uniform on Keith Olbermann's show last night.  I have no idea why.

Johnny Weir, in a Russian military uniform, on Keith Olbermann’s show last night talking about the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.

Weir has been somewhat – how shall I say? – unhelpful in terms of his lack of support for the international effort to help the gay and trans communities in Russia.  Weir seems to be letting his Olympian side take precedence over his gay side, routinely talking about how important it is not to boycott the 2014 Winter Olympics, while not giving nearly enough lip service (in my opinion) to the cause of those we’re trying to help in this entire effort.

Weir didn’t disappoint last night when he went on Keith Olbermann’s ESPN show and dissed the effort yet again, this time decked out, oddly, in a Russian military uniform.

Weir started by talking about how important Jesse Owens’ victory was at the 1936 Nazi Olympics in Berlin.  We’ve discussed that argument a few times:

1) Jesse Owens won and the Nazis still killed millions afterwards.

2) You can’t have a Jesse Owens moment at Sochi if it’s against the law for gay athletes to be out and the IOC tells gay athletes to stay in the closet.

3) Jesse Owens was treated like garbage when he got back to the US after his “victory.”  If his victory didn’t change minds in America, I’m wondering how many it changed in Nazi Germany.

4) While other gay Olympians like New Zealand speed skater Blake Skjellerup have promised to wear a rainbow pin during his competition at Sochi, Weir has made no such promise were he to make the American team.  Why hasn’t he?

Weir then went on to say that “it’s not good for anybody” if gays get arrested at Sochi and the world learns how bad the Russian regime really is on gay and trans issues.  Yes, we wouldn’t want the world to learn that lesson, would we.

Weir then talked about how it’s a terrible idea to boycott Stoli vodka because of the poor workers who will suffer.  So I guess we don’t even boycott anyone, don’t ever hold any country or any company responsible for anything because at the end of the day, as Mitt Romney and now Johnny Weir will tell you, corporations are people.

Then Weir lays the big lie:

“There’s nothing good that can come from a boycott.”

It’s time to revisit the Dan Savage quote above.  The only reason that Johnny Weir is even on Keith Olbermann’s show is because the boycott took an issue that most people didn’t care about and made it an international scandal with non-stop coverage going on seven weeks now.  No one outside of the gay blogs and the very occasional news article was talking about Russia’s draconian crackdown on its gay and trans citizens, and it certainly wasn’t being discussed on a daily basis like it is now.  Yet, just days ago, the issue was raised at the G20 summit by both President Obama and the British Prime Minister.  The laser-like focus of the world on this problem didn’t occur by happenstance.  It happened because some activists called for a boycott which caught the attention of the gay community, the media and the world.

Then, just when you thought Johnny Weir couldn’t be a greater idiot than he’s already proven himself repeatedly to be, Weir actually has the audacity to claim that situation gays face in Russia is the same one he faces in New Jersey, because New Jersey doesn’t recognize his marriage.

Johnny, the day anti-gay vigilantes kidnap you, beat you, torture you, force you to drink urine, and the American government ignores the crime because they just don’t like the fact that you’re gay, then we’ll talk about the equivalence between Russia’s horrific treatment of its gay and trans populace and the fact that Governor Christie can’t decide whether he thinks you should be able to get married.

But isn’t that what’s really underlying Johnny Weir’s pro-Russian ambivalence about this entire issue.  Weir simply isn’t convinced that what Russia is doing to its LGBT citizens is any big deal.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown (1989); and worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, and as a stringer for the Economist. Frequent TV pundit: O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline & Reliable Sources. Bio, .

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  • TJ

    Glad the controversy here seems to be dying down. I may take some heat for this but I think we need to accept that whatever our personal feelings on the issue, Weir has the right to be both gay and *not* an activist.

    We might not understand it but we need to respect his right to make that decision. We wanted him to join the party but it’s starting to look like that’s not his intention. That’s okay. This is not the most important issue at stake in the Russia/LGBT situation. It’s time to move on.

    Respect to Mr. Weir for the individual activism that he is doing, and best of luck to him in all his future endeavors!

  • geoffalnutt

    Weir needs to re-locate to Russia right now (the little skank)!!! I’m gay and ashamed to have him on these shores. Oh, they’ll just love him in Moscow (NOT). Maybe the uniform will help. Ms. Weir is done…on both sides. His new line will be “Would you like fries with that..?”

  • RaymondHng
  • Polterguest

    He’s never been good at the latter and he’s no longer good at the former.

  • http://mralexsarmiento.blogspot.com/ Alex Sarmiento

    To be fair, you’re right. I don’t know that many gay men. I wish that I did, though.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    “I happen to be a gay man who LOVES the Olympics. I’m probably the only non-athletic gay man on the planet who is an ardent Olympic fan, and not just some passive viewer.”

    It doesn’t sound like you know many gay men. I love the Olympics. I will admit to having been a runner, but my husband could barely walk across a room without tripping, and he loved the Olympics. We also have many friends who love them.

  • http://mralexsarmiento.blogspot.com/ Alex Sarmiento

    I happen to be a gay man who LOVES the Olympics. I’m probably the only non-athletic gay man on the planet who is an ardent Olympic fan, and not just some passive viewer. I’ve been watching both the Winter and Summer Olympics since 1992. This controversy saddens me. I don’t think that a boycott of Sochi 2014 will work, but I do think that something has to be done. Russia scares the shit out of me, and Tsar Vladimir of Putinistan and his policies make me want to beat the shit out of him, or at least get the Dykes on Bikes to invade the Kremlin and annihilate the son of a bitch. Every two years I invest two fucking weeks out of my life to watch the Olympics, even when it’s being held in places that don’t give a shit about gay people or human rights in general like China (Beijing 2008), Russia (Sochi 2014), or Goddess forbid, Utah (Salt Lake City 2002). The Olympics mean as much to me as the Super Bowl, the World Cup, tickets to Wicked, or fucking a nominally-heterosexual man mean to everyone else. Oh, and Johnny Weir (or should I say Vanya Voronova, given his predilection for all things Russian) looks like the guy from the Human League in that video clip.

  • labdad

    Stick to what you do best, Johnny, skating and trying to look pretty.

  • doug105

    BURN IN HELL WEIR.

  • RJ

    Remember the black power salute of the 1968 Olympics:)? Tommie Smith, Juan Carlos, and Peter Norman are the heroes of those games/among the greatest icons of the entire history of the Olympic games. I’m just a nobody non-athlete but I hope if I was competing I’d consider something like that and I hope someone makes a similar statement in Sochi.

  • TJ

    Let’s also not forget that as an “out” athlete, he’s already risking a lot just by showing up. Yes it would be a “Braveheart” moment if he did make a big scene, but LET’S FACE IT, some people aren’t meant for that. He lightens our lives with his artistic skating and by entertaining us on Kathy Griffin. Does he really have to get his neck broken in Russia to be “a decent human being”? I mean seriously, isn’t that statement blatantly homophobic in itself??? He has friends and family in Russia. He loves it there. We’d all like the guy to be a “hero” in this context, but give me a break – as a gay athlete, he’s already a hero for showing up in Russia at all. Why, as a gay man, is this protest HIS responsibility??? Why is he the coward, as opposed to any of us who as spectators could go and make a scene? Have YOU and your bff bought tickets and some cherry flavored chapstick to stage a make out protest in the Red Square???? Why not?

    To be honest, I’d like to see more coversation about what the straight athletes will do. Why is all the heat coming down on the LGBT athletes who will inevitably be risking much MORE in terms of safety to make the SAME statement? Shouldn’t the straight athletes take a stand too?? Didn’t Elie Wiesel say, “First they came for the socialists, and I did not speak out — because I was not a socialist. Then they came for the trade unionists, and I did not speak out — because I was not a trade unionist. Then they came for the Jews, and I did not speak out — because I was not a Jew. Then they came for me — and there was no one left to speak for me.” Where are the straight athletes in this conversation???

  • TJ

    Hmm don’t count Weir out yet. I agree that some of the stuff he’s saying at this point sounds a bit strange at least imo, but let’s consider it from his perspective. Russia is more or less his “adopted” country where despite its draconian laws against gays he does apparently in some ways feel
    more at home there than in the United States. Myself as a woman who fell in love with a certain/specific rather repressive East Asian culture, I can understand that. To be honest, I would love to see Johnny Weir make some sort of grand “FUCK YOU” statement towards the Russian government, at the Olympics. But first let’s ask OURSELVES WHY we want to see that. Because WE’RE pissed off and want to see Putin have an aneurysm on live tv? Or because we think that that’s genuinely the most efficacious way to improve the LGBT situation in Russia *as much as possible*? What do we actually know about Russian culture? Does that knowledge compare to Weir’s longterm research of Russian culture and friendships with many Russian citizens? Is it possible that Weir knows something about how to change Russian culture that we do not?

    I think Americans have an amazing gift in that when we see a wrong, we immediately want to do everything to fix it. But, our weakness tends to be that we rush in with little to any research of HOW to do that EFFECTIVELY. At this point, Weir knows more about Russian culture than probably 90% of Americans. Perhaps, despite his somewhat ineloquent media appearances, he may be on to something a little more subtle than our usual American tactics.

    For example, he just debuted a new skating program to “Schindler’s List”. Can you imagine him skating to that as a gay man in Sochi? Just because it’s subtle doesn’t make it less meaningful – maybe even the opposite in front of a (I hate to say it, but) non-American audience. Perhaps his words of “empowerment” and identification with Russia’s LGBT population are not so meaningless after all?

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VvVOCrcJ1CQ&feature=youtu.be

  • fletcher

    Actually I thought Janet Jackson looked better in that uniform than Weir did.

  • kimberly537

    my Aunty Alice just got an almost new gold Nissan Xterra SUV just by working online with a laptop… see w­w­w.J­A­M­20.c­o­m

  • ronbo

    I anticipate the moment when an actual sports hero stands up and stands out for his fellow man. That person/people will be heralded – even if they revoke medals.

    Expect greatness.

  • Aussie

    “There’s nothing good that can come from a boycott.”

    Just ask Rosa Parks.

  • chris10858

    Dear Johnny,
    Better to Remain Silent and Be Thought a Fool than to Speak and Remove All Doubt

  • benb

    I would’ve taken him more seriously if he’d stuck with the rubber nose and rainbow afro.

  • BloggerDave

    Hey Tanya Harding… I need you to take care of this skate queen…

  • Thom Allen

    With the Russian hatred of gays, I wonder how Putin and his band of merry assholes feel about a flamer like Johnny sucking up to them and extolling their virtues? Bet it’s caused a huge wave uf behind the scenes nausea and vomiting in Moscow and Sochi.

  • Thom Allen

    Just looking at that screen capture of him . . . makes my fist tingle. I can feel it smashing into his forehead just above the (plucked) brow line.

  • Thom Allen

    I was trying to think who he reminded me of – that’s it! Thanks.

  • balabanov11

    What is both hilarious and incredibly infuriating to those of us who actually know figure skating, as that he’s ONLY doing this to shill his brand, and extend his celebutard shelf life. He has ZERO CHANCE OF COMPETING AT THE OLYMPICS. He will only be there if some tv organization brings him there for his “colorful commentary”, so every stupid, uninformed, erratic thing he does just makes that more money in his bank -.He’s now a “personality”. I would love it if he fell off a cliff.

  • Gwendolynn

    …wow, talk about someone who’s brain-smooth AND not the sharpest tool in the shed. Creepy doesn’t begin to cover the amount of bat s**t insanity here.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Weir exudes a strange resemblance to Pee Wee Herman.

  • stephen

    RIGHT ON MIKE !

  • stephen

    EXACTLY!!!! People need to wake the fuck up! Imagine how frightening it is to be gay there! They could beat the shit out of you! Take your children! And we are gonna go there and give them our money to watch some games!?!? It makes me sick and sad this is happening to our brothers and sisters there.

  • stephen

    why doesn’t Johnny and his partner move to Russia and wear his cute Russian outfit complete with heels and see how welcome he would be ?

  • Anonymous

    The only way to get political attention in America is $$…also the reason Johnny Weird has a platform!

  • Joseph Singer

    Just remember that apologizing and being an apologist aren’t the same thing; an apologist argues in defense of something. . Johnny may have made a misstep, but in the end is it worth getting upset over? He’s in no way the only voice for our community int he public eye. Perhaps we should simply pity him for his faux pas and reserve the vitriol for a worthy target.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    Yes, I think I mentioned that in my Jesse Owens post, and forget to mention it, you’re right. It is the forgotten part of the Jesse Owens invocation.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    I had initially written in the post about how whenever I write his name, and I mean WHENEVER, I always write Johnny Weird, unintentionally. EVERY SINGLE TIME. But didn’t seem right with the overall story. It is a weird finger-memory problem though.

  • Alan Carrier

    Let’s face it, he is not the brightest wick: she can skate ….

  • NedFlaherty

    Dear Mr. Weir:

    Had you married a German man instead of a Russian one, instead of your Russian military uniform, today would you be wearing a Nazi outfit?

    If not, why not? What is the difference?

    Explain your decisions, but first, please figure out exactly what they are.

  • Ninong

    Both the IOC and the USOC have already allowed Russia’s “laws to prevent the construction of a Pride House in the Olympic Village.” That has already been settled. The IOC has agreed that there will be no Pride House at the Sochi Olympics.

    Furthermore, the IOC has decided that public displays of support for homosexual orientation, such as rainbow flags, rainbow pins, even women’s fingernails painted in different colors to match the rainbow will not be tolerated. In fact, the IOC has warned athletes that any display of support for homosexual rights at the Sochi Olympics will not be allowed because that would count as a political statement. Remember, they have the power to disqualify an athlete, and even take away medals that have already been won, for violation of their interpretation of the Olympic Charter.

  • Bill_Perdue

    Weir is as much a quisling as Barney Frank.

  • http://firefeeder.blogspot.com/ Stratplayer

    Indeed. Still, I am amazed that he is such an immature, narcissistic douchebag that it didn’t occur to him that wearing that stupid uniform would accomplish nothing but to make him come across as an immature, narcissistic douchebag.

  • dcinsider

    The man is a dumbbell. His opinions are of no value. Let’s ignore him.

  • Ninong

    Maybe he won’t make the American team.

  • JamaicanJewel

    I still think the best boycott would be a boycott of the podium. What do you think would happen if there were no podium ceremonies to broadcast? Gays & str8s unite!

  • tomtallis

    Maybe it’s time to boycot Johnny Weir.

  • http://adgitadiaries.com/ karmanot

    Creepy, sad, skate queen.

  • AHoltzer38

    Obviously more than anything, Weir craves being a poster boy. Well, he is a poster boy. For the idiocy of ascribing intelligence or credibility or leadership strictly on the basis of athletic ability.

  • fletcher

    After watching that, from now on he’s Johnny Weird.

  • Strepsi

    Then thing is Tommie Smith was stripped of his medal and treated like s*** when he came home, he said it ruined his life for years. This “the athletes have trained so hard and deserve to shine” meme is strong within the athletes themselves — of course it is, they did train hard — so to expect an athlete who is both athletic enough to win, AND gay or pro-gay AND courageous enough to risk the medal by waving a rainbow flag, seems like the LEAST likely thing to expect, never mind pin our hopes on. I hope I’m wrong, but that seems a pipe dream.

  • http://www.rebeccamorn.com/mind BeccaM

    “Nothing good can come of a boycott”?

    Johnny, there are a few million African American civil rights activists from the 1950s and 60s, and their supporters, who’d like to disagree with you on that particular nonsense. Boycotts, sit-ins, and demonstrations accomplished a great deal of good, in the long run.

  • Whitewitch

    Sadly, he can’t cook either…he is a bit one dimensional and it is clear, that to him, being an Olympian was more important to him personally. His costume is a bit over the top, eh?

  • DastiusKrazitauc

    According to him, Weir will be *celebrated* as he performs in St. Petersburg, Russia, at the end of the month. His presence there will have nothing whatsoever to do with the Olympic Movement that he holds so dear and doesn’t want to taint. What excuse then will he have for not protesting?

  • basenjilover

    I turn off or switch channel whenever idiotic Johnny boy is on. Few years back I was completely turned off when this little prick sprawled and pranced on pile of furs and thought nothing wrong (or cared) with how animals are killed for their furs. He wouldn’t like it if a rod is inerted in his anus and electrocuted (normal practices in Russia and elsewhere to preserve furs). And he can keep his self centered opinions to himself. (Sent Keith an email on my disappointment with his Johnny boy handling.)

  • http://www.newmillgay.com/ The_Fixer

    Yes, if you have to call yourself Fabulous, then you ain’t. That’s for other people to say.

    I call him clueless. Because that pretty well sums him up.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    The boycotts have worked. It may not have affected Russia financially. However, it has caused Russia, Coke, NBC, McDonald’s, etc. to worry a bit. Also the media is becoming aware of the problems in Russia. We really need to thank people like Dan, Harvey, and John for this.

  • pappyvet

    Sorry Johnny,nothing was ever progressed by the people being harmed deciding to keep quiet and stay in the background.

    “If there is no struggle, there is no progress.”
    Frederick Douglas

  • skwcw2001

    one thing I have learned in my life in the world of gay is that if your somewhat cute and out there your put on a pedestal you can run over kittens with a mower and folks would be going gaga over you and making excuses for your behavior. This young man is a russian fanatic he loves all things russian and has for years, he is highly protected due to his handlers and his position so he faces no damage for anything. He is doing alot of harm, he is say a boycott doesnt work well if that where true, if the boycotts where not working then why is he being interviewed??? Because the boycotts are working.

  • jomicur

    I doubt he can think at all beyond “I Me Mine Gimme!” Like most athletes (and yes, I do mean MOST; I’m well aware there are exceptions). We as a society really have to move beyond this absurd attitude that just because someone has a talent for some kind of athletics he/she is therefore a role model for anything other than athletics. At my youngest and fittest I could never have done what Weir does, and I admire him for that. But no more than I admire someone who is better at chess than me, or at playing the piano. But when was the last time we saw our media make as much a fuss over a chess player or a pianist as they do over some goon with an Olympic medal or a Superbowl ring?

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    I think Olbermann chose not to mention the uniform. It was obvious that Weir was doing it for attention. When Olbermann didn’t mention the uniform, he denied Weir that attention.

  • Hue-Man

    Elvis Stojko: “People in the gay community have to realize they’ve got to take themselves out of it. It’s not against anybody. I’ve been getting heat for this, but there are people behind me saying that they appreciate it. It’s about what people can identify with when they’re watching the sport. It doesn’t have anything to do with gayness. Effeminate men can identify with effeminate skating. Masculine men can’t identify with that. When I watch it, I can’t identify because I don’t move like that. My consciousness doesn’t feel like that.http://www.thebacklot.com/elvis-stojko-does-not-get-to-tell-gay-people-to-not-be-offended/02/2010/ Weir also is also discussed.

    The reason I raised the issue was to add another layer of mental pressure to male skaters. They compete in a technically difficult sport, have the normal performance mental stresses but then have additional pressures because so many of them are gay – and mostly closeted – and are then being judged as inferior by karate masters like Stojko because they’re not “man enough”.

    I can imagine a new stress coming up as the Russian bloc – hating gays seems to be catching on in the former Warsaw Pact countries – purges all the gay judges in the skating competitions! Only manly men will get marked well…1950s here we come.

  • Strepsi

    Appreciate your work on this topic John. IMO, your “Jesse Owens” moment #2 should be

    2) Jesse Owens won, but the U.S. Olympic Team benched 2 Jewish team members Marty Glickman & Sam Stoller, to acquiesce to Hitler’s Nuremberg Laws. This is not acceptable today.

    Here’s a good quote from Emma Teitl, the lesbian columnist at editorially-conservative Maclean’s magazine (Canada’s “Time”) about the Jesse Owens comparisons — you may want to post about it

    “But if Russia makes zero concessions on gay rights, if we actually allow its laws to prevent the construction of a Pride house in the Olympic Village, then we will have conveyed to Russia, and countries with equally odious anti-gay laws, that human rights can be bartered for good hockey. We will have done en masse what Jesse Owens’s coach did to two Jewish sprinters in Berlin in 1936. The year is 2013. Surely, we can do better.”

    http://www2.macleans.ca/2013/08/31/rainbows-over-russia/

  • FLL

    The choice of wearing a Russian military uniform was bizarre, especially considering that he was being interviewed about the oppression of gay people in Russia by Keith Olbermann, who is very much in favor of putting pressure on Russia to change its anti-gay laws. Was the Russian military uniform supposed to be some sort of slap in the face? At Olbermann? At advocates of LGBT rights in general? I tend to think that it was meant as a slap in the face because Weir has a history of gleefully spitting in people’s faces, like a few years back when he was making a big, non-stop public spectacle out of wearing real furs just to insult his critics from People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA). Weir’s mental stability seems a bit sketchy, at times. He hasn’t yet matched Nikolai Alexeyev and gone off the manic-depressive deep end, but who knows?

    Where I must really cry foul is the outrageous false equivalency Weir makes between Russia’s anti-gay laws and the fact that New Jersey doesn’t yet have marriage equality. I will generously ignore the bill that is now being debated in the Russian legislature that would require the state to kidnap the children of any parent who is gay or believed to be gay. The Russian laws that are currently on the books make the exercise of free speech about gay rights a criminal offense for anyone, gay or straight, punishable by fine and imprisonment. Johnny Weir (not to mention some Internet commenters) have turned false equivalency into some kind of art form, and it really isn’t funny. The Russian anti-”gay propaganda” law is not equivalent to New Jersey’s lack of marriage equality, nor is it equivalent to DOMA or state constitutional amendments banning same-sex marriage, such as Prop 8. People who make such horrific claims of equivalency, such as Johnny Weir, lose all credibility. Will Mr. Weir and others please, please stop making this insulting claim of equivalency? Thank you in advance.

  • worfington

    Wait… There’s a straight contingent in the figure skating world?

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    yes :)

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    That reads like one of those sexist old articles in the Washington Post about what broaches Madeleine Albright was wearing to a press conference about war.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    I absolutely agree about the discussion over a boycott of the Olympics. You can have differing views on the merits of a boycott – but he seems to have a differing view on whether Russia deserves much criticism at all.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    Keith was handling him with kid gloves. As for the boycott opinion, as I’ve noted elsewhere, you can be against a boycott of the Olympics and not be a total turncoat idiot. There are those who are against a boycott, but who are outraged by Russia’s treatment of its gay and trans citizens, and vocally criticize Russia’s actions, rather than apologizing for them and making the remarkable claim that things are as bad in New Jersey for gays as they are in Russia.

    The guy is an idiot.

  • joelfreak

    The main thing that he fails to realize is that the Olympics is a commercial venture. Its not run by the UN. Its pay to play.

  • Jim Olson

    Can I share this article? “12 Years Later, Let’s Stop Being Used.” http://www.forwardprogressives.com/12-years-later-lets-stop-being-used/

  • Jim Olson

    He has to make the skating team first.

  • Butch Fries

    Here you go, John. This is what Outsports said about it.

    It was a great interview and Weir came across as articulate and thoughtful, but having heard him on the subject before, I was most struck by his choice of attire — a Russian military uniform (though it could have been from the Soviet era), complete with stripes, an eagle, stars and a bunch of medals, and worn over a white shirt with some kind of brooch.

    I was dying for Olbermann to ask him about the uniform — I imagine most viewers were — but that never came up, which was odd since most guests don’t come on wearing a military uniform of another country. Weir has always pushed the limits with his skating uniform, so seeing him decked out was not too surprising. If it was winter, he might have worn one of those Russian fur hats.

  • Jim

    Keith was handling Johnny with kid gloves. I really don’t have the animosity towards Johnny that most here are voicing. He’s just expressing his opinions and I know many gay people here who are against boycotts, whether they be against products or IOC . I don’t think a boycott is happening anyway, and we’ll just have to wait and see what kind of protest or demonstration will occur.

  • olandp

    Really Johnny, wedges?

  • Lalock

    I’m in total agreement on the assholishness of Johnny Weir. The one thing I might argue, though, is whether a boycott of the Olympics by athletes is appropriate. It was pointed out on another site that in 1968 many black American athletes were encouraged to boycott the Olympics because of their unfair treatment at home. Kareem Abdul-Jabbar (then still Lew Alcindor) joined the boycott. Very few people remember that. What people have burned into their memories, though, is the image of Tommie Smith and John Carlos giving the Black Power salute on the podium after the 200M. Sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words.

    That said, though, if the athletes are in physical danger by making such a statement, all bets are off. It does seem a no-brainer, though, for spectators to boycott. Russia doesn’t deserve the world’s tourism dollars, and the humiliation of empty arenas everywhere would be the country’s just desserts.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    Yes. Though in Weir’s case, he gives us so many other legitimate reasons to be annoyed :)

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    I thought that was odd too. Imagine his grindr profile.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    Yeah, I mistakenly read a few stories this morning about 9/11. At least this year I wasn’t reminded until last night. I may be in the minority, but I really need the entire thing to go away completely for several years – I’ve discovered that for me, at least, these annual memories are not healthy.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    Also, you can be against boycotting the Olympics and still make a powerful statement about how f’d up thing are in Russia right now for gay and trans people, about how important it is for everyone to speak up, etc. He, generally, seems to apologize for them, a lot.

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    We need to be honest – there are many gay men who have a problem with gay men they perceive as effeminate. My husband was one of those. The really weird thing is we had a full length mirror, and I know my husband looked at his reflection. He just didn’t get the irony of him disliking effeminate gay men.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    I’ve seen that sentiment before, yes.

  • Monoceros Forth

    “My livelihood!” Somehow I doubt that Johnny Weir would be left starving and broke if the Sochi Olympics don’t happen.

  • caphillprof

    I think it’s the sports uber alles denialism of sports.

    Nothing, but nobody, can stand in the way of the game. The game is more important than life itself.

    I’m trying to get my head around the New Testament notion that a figure skater shall lead them.

  • http://AMERICAblog.com/ John Aravosis

    They liked his uniform?

  • caphillprof

    But unless and until he is shunned, it makes no matter.

    I think you don’t appreciate shunning.

  • Butch Fries

    What seemed really weird to me was that the blog Outsports gave this interview an absolutely glowing review. I don’t get it.

  • Hue-Man

    There seems also to be a streak of hate within the male figure skating world; I’m referring to the Canadian effort in 2009 to de-gay men’s figure skating. I don’t know if it’s the straight contingent telling the gays to “man up” or a manifestation of gay self-hate. As someone whose high school best friend was a figure skater (he came out post-graduation), I’m in awe of their athleticism and their ability to take bone-crushing falls and get back up on their skates.

    “”If figure skating wants to draw in hockey fans they should put two figure skaters on the ice at the same time and let them body check each other and punch each other,” said [Outsports co-founder Cyd] Zeigler. “Telling figure skaters to be more masculine — that’s just not going to do it.”” http://abcnews.go.com/WN/story?id=7473728&page=1

  • NCMan

    Boycotting the Olympics in Sochi does not have to mean taking away the athletes opportunity to compete and show the world their skills. The athletes can still compete. Just NOT IN RUSSIA. The competitions could be easily moved to other locations around the world. It’s not like there aren’t both skiing and skating world championship competitions held somewhere every year. And, for those sports requiring specialized venues, there is Vancouver from only 4 years ago. The competitions don’t have to be all held in the same location and at the same time for the athletes to be able to compete and show us the skills they have honed over their lifetimes. If what they are really worried about is the pomp and circumstance of the opening and closing ceremonies and the “party” atmosphere, then I have no sympathy for them.

  • Thom Allen

    Off topic. 9/11/01 – The first of the WTC towers has already been hit. In a short while the South Tower will be struck. Ninety minutes of carnage and terror.

    From WIki:

    The four flights were:

    American Airlines Flight 11: Left Boston’s Logan Airport
    at 7:59 a.m. enroute to Los Angeles with a crew of 11 and 76
    passengers, not including five hijackers. The hijackers flew the plane
    into the North Tower of the World Trade Center at 8:46 a.m.

    United Airlines Flight 175:
    Left Logan Airport at 8:14 a.m. enroute to Los Angeles with a crew of
    nine and 51 passengers, not including five hijackers. The hijackers flew
    the plane into the South Tower of the World Trade Center at 9:03 a.m.

    American Airlines Flight 77: Left Washington Dulles International Airport in Virginia
    at 8:20 a.m. enroute to Los Angeles with a crew of six and 53
    passengers, not including five hijackers. The hijackers flew the plane
    into the Pentagon at 9:37 a.m.

    United Airlines Flight 93: Left Newark International Airport
    at 8:42 a.m. enroute to San Francisco, with a crew of seven and 33
    passengers, not including four hijackers. As passengers attempted to
    subdue the hijackers, the aircraft crashed into the ground near Shanksville, Pennsylvania, at 10:03 a.m.

    http://thevarnishedtruth.ning.com/photo/albums/never-forget-9-11

  • mark_in_toronto

    He lost me when he called himself ‘fabulous.’
    A discredit to the homo race.

  • Indigo

    Teen camp looks cute on teens. He’s a little old for that and a whole lot immature for the public forum, maybe an AdultSwim cartoon could do him justice, a bit part in The Venture Brothers could fit that look.

  • Isaac

    You would think he would try and help the gay struggle in Russia instead of ignoring or downplaying the whole situation. The only people who really have the opportunity to really protest in a meaningful way are the athletes participating in the games. It seems like Johnny is trying to convince the world that Russia isn’t that bad for gays which is simply untrue. No more air time should be given to him, instead interview the openly gay athletes who ARE going to compete and ask them how they feel. Ask them what they think of Russia. I bet they won’t be as forgiving of the anti gay violence.

  • http://firefeeder.blogspot.com/ Stratplayer

    Everything about Johnny Weir is awful, but I’m really puzzled by the Russian army uniform. Wtf is that all about? Did he think he’d gain credibility with such a bizarre stunt?

  • Mike_in_the_Tundra

    As far as I’m concerned, he never had a gay card, only a homosexual card. Being gay is not just based on what you put in your mouth, nor is it just being proud of who you are. I personally believe it requires pride in all your gay brothers and sisters. That would also require that you be concerned for their welfare. As you said earlier, Weir can’t get beyond “me, me, me.”

  • StraightGrandmother

    Is there any way to take his Gay Card away?

  • StraightGrandmother

    Me, me, me, me, me.

  • StraightGrandmother

    His false Equivalency of New Jersey = Russia makes me puke.
    Will NewJersey arrest you for carrying a Rainbow Flag Asshole?
    Does New Jersey threaten, by law, to take your children away?
    Asshole Johnny Weir, go live in Russia if you think it is so great.

  • http://heimaey.us/ heimaey

    Unfortunately, he could be the poster boy for what happens to gay people when they mess with crazy Russia. I hope he’s OK but it could lead to his death and he could cause many others.

  • Thom Allen

    You are too kind. He’s an embarrassment to the USOC, the Olympics and the human race.

  • Thom Allen

    Johnny Weir, half the brains of Sarah Palin, twice as much ego and not nearly as well dressed. FAIL.

    I can only hope the Russians bust him in Sochi and drag him off, kicking and screaming to a 15 day jail term that will show him just how much the Russians LOVE him.

    His quote about the Russians supporting ” . . .Me, My Career, My
    LIVELIHOOD . . .” (emphasis mine, craven stupidity his) is disgusting.
    He cares nothing for the gays already injured, killed or arrested.
    Nothing about repression in Russia. Nothing about justice. He’s not
    enraged at the hypocrisy of the IOC, USOC, Russian government, Olympic
    sponsors. He’s a PoS with an overinflated ego.

  • caphillprof

    Johnny Weir should be shunned.

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