clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

NBC Sports might cover Russian anti-gay laws at Olympics

New, comments

NBC Sports' Mark Lazarus seems willing to wait for an incident before discussing the oppressive laws

Mike Stobe

NBC may include discussion of Russia's anti-gay laws if they become news during the Games, according to NBC Sports chairman Mark Lazarus. From the Los Angeles Times:

Lazarus sought to tamp down speculation that Russia's recently enacted anti-gay laws could upstage the athletes or competitions. "Governments across the world have different laws," he said. Lazarus also stopped short of saying NBC would use its huge platform to advocate against the laws.

It seems a bit of a cop-out to me. While I've been vocal against boycotting the Winter Games in Sochi, the media should bring attention to the issue in a big way. Whether there's an "incident" or not, the laws are real, athletes are affected by them, and certainly the oppression of an entire class of people in the host nation is of interest. If the Olympics were held in a nation that made being black illegal, they would cover it.

NBC got into hot water with some in 2008 when they failed to mention diver Matthew Mitcham's sexual orientation when he won the only non-Chinese diving gold medal at the Beijing Olympics. Mitcham's partner, Lachlan Fletcher, was in the stands at the Games; Despite the unique nature of having a boyfriend in the stands, NBC never mentioned it.