Though the US won't boycott the 2014 Olympics in Sochi, President Obama has made it clear what he thinks of Russia's anti-gay legislation and their shameful treatment of gays and lesbians.
The President has selected three openly gay athletes in the US delegation for the opening and closing ceremonies. For the first time since 2000, neither a President, former President, First Lady, Vice President nor any high-level American official will attend the games.
The three openly gay athletes who will be heading to Sochi are tennis star and Presidential Medal of Freedom recipient Billie Jean King, Olympic ice hockey medalist Caitlin Cahow and Olympic figure skating gold medalist Brian Boitano, who chose the occasion to officially step out of the closet.
"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.
Billie Jean King said, "I am equally proud to stand with the members of the LGBT community in support of all athletes who will be competing in Sochi and I hope these Olympic Games will indeed be a watershed moment for the universal acceptance of all people."
Michael Cole-Schwartz, spokesman for the Human Rights Campaign, said, "It's a positive sign to see openly gay representatives in the delegation. Hopefully, it sends a message to the Russian people and the rest of the world that the United States values the civil and human rights of LGBT people."
France and Germany will join the US in not sending their elected officials to Sochi. France legalized gay marriage this year, while Germany has legally recognized same-sex civil unions since 2001.
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