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A Proposal to Ban Every (Gay) Sport From the Winter Olympics

• July 30, 2013 • 11:47 AM

(PHOTO: WIKIMEDIA COMMONS)

If all of the sports are gay, then there should be no sports in Russia.

You may have heard: Russia just passed an “anti-gay propaganda” law. You may know: Russia is hosting the 2014 Winter Olympics. Considering these two things, Russian lawmaker Vitaly Milonov has suggested that every gay athlete and spectator who comes to Russia for the 2014 Games will be arrested. (The International Olympic Committee says that won’t happen.) And while it is not totally clear what the “gay propaganda” law specifically means, Global Post has a useful summary:

Reports of arrest for kissing or hold hands, wearing or using rainbows, or pro-gay activism have helped to clarify the definition of “propaganda” as “any statement, oral or otherwise, that is pro-gay.”

It is now illegal to even admit homosexuality in public. It is also illegal to equate the value of homosexual relationships with that of heterosexual relationships, and punishment does not apply solely to Russians.

Foreigners can be arrested and detained for up to 15 days, fined and deported.

So, basically, anything remotely gay, and you’re in prison. With that in mind, I suggest, to Milonov and the rest of Russia, that every sport be banned from the 2014 Winter Games.

Alpine skiing? The competitors wear rainbow-colored spandex, which is often associated with “gay” in popular culture.

Biathlon? Men. Holding guns. Discharging them into the air. Textbook phallic symbolism.

Bobsled? Four men in spandex, stuffed inside a penis-shaped capsule. You could also argue that women doing the same—being inside of the penis capsule, which is an anti-traditional-sex position—is just as evocative of disruption.

Cross-country skiing? See alpine skiing.

Curling? Women eschew traditional feminine attire for pants and polo shirts. Men crash large stones into large stones strategically placed by other men.

Figure skating? “I can say that the best figure-skating in the world is the Soviet school of figure skating,” said Milonov. I have no response.

Freestyle skiing? Women with sticks strapped to their feet stomp over moguls, which evoke breasts, and thus suggests a rejection of classical femininity.

Ice hockey? Wood-en sticks are used to slap a hard and cold object past a desexualized being covered in padding and shielded by a mask.

Luge? Men in spandex, laying backwards, in direct contrast with the traditional male posture of dominance. Women, erect and sliding through a giant tube, subverting the basic male-to-female sex act.

Nordic combined? One gay sport plus another gay sport equals a really gay sport.

Short track speed skating? Often results in members of the same sex piled on top of each other while wearing extremely tight clothing, and is therefore not too dissimilar from a public orgy.

Skeleton? The name itself is a rejection of the appearance and the living human characteristics which are the basis of traditional patriarchal society. That, therefore, is an inherently gay attitude.

Ski jumping? Both male and female posit themselves as human phallic symbols, hurtling through the air. That evocation of equality is gay.

Snowboarding? The sport was founded as a counter-cultural activity, which is gay.

Speed skating? Hooded spandex outfits obscure any suggestion of gender across all competitions, thus creating a space for any/all close readings of sexuality, which would not be the case in a climate where “gay” is considered illegal.

In short, ban the 2014 Winter Olympics from Russia.

Ryan O'Hanlon
Senior Digital Editor Ryan O’Hanlon joined Pacific Standard from Outside, where he was an assistant online editor. He is a graduate of the College of the Holy Cross, and his writing has appeared in Deadspin, Grantland, The Awl, New York, The Atlantic, and elsewhere. Follow him on Twitter @rwohan.

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