Windy City Media Group Frontpage News Home
CELEBRATING 28+ YEARS OF Lesbian Gay Bisexual and Transgender NEWS

Search Gay News Articles
Advanced Search
Gay News Sponsor Windy City Times 2014-08-20
Download Issue
  News Index       Archives   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds   AIDS @ 32
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime

Gay in the Life: Richard Biasi Gay in the Life: Richard Biasi
Just two years ago, Richard Biasi started crafting bowties from recycled vintage ...

Browse Gay News Index   Browse Gay News Archives
  Windy City Times

Chicago Sister Cities won't suspend Moscow relationship
Lawmakers send letter to Kerry urging Olympic vigilance
by Matt Simonette
2013-08-04

facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email


Following a call by Equality Illinois last week for Chicago to drop its sister city status with Moscow, the Chair of the Moscow Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International released a statement July 31 saying that it would be wrong to end the relationship.

"As Chair of the Moscow Committee of Chicago Sister Cities International, I share my deepest concerns with those around the world that have shed light on the discriminatory policies of the Russian government toward its LGBT citizens," said Committee Chair Aleksandra Efimova. "…As a person who has lived her life in both the United States and Russia, I firmly believe the best way I can effect change on this situation is to continue to keep relations open between Chicago and Moscow. I feel that ending the sister city relationship with Moscow will only further hurt the LGBT citizens of our sister city by isolating them from places like our own city of Chicago that embrace their rights as individuals."

She added that, "with an open dialogue and connection with Moscow, we are able to bring to them that which has made Chicago so great—respect for all its citizens and tolerance for diversity."

In an editorial in mid-July, Windy City Times called for Chicago to suspend the relationship. Chicago Sister Cities International is now part of World Business Chicago; its honorary chairman is President Barack Obama. The honorary chairman of Chicago Sister Cities is Mayor Rahm Emanuel, who is also the chairman of World Business Chicago. Chicago Sister Cities did not respond to a request for clarification about any specific strategies or timelines by press time.

The Equality Illinois statement called for two additional steps in registering protest: suspending business relationships with the Russian Federation and cancelling cultural and recreational travel to it.

"Among countries with homophobic laws, Russia is unique in that it is a permanent member of the UN Security Council and wants to be a player on the European and world stages, yet it fails to provide basic human rights for millions of its citizens and visitors. More than being persecuted and harassed, people in Russia are also being violently attacked for their advocacy. This cannot go unanswered," said Equality Illinois CEO Bernard Cherkasov.

Gay bars in Chicago and numerous cities around the world have banned Stolichnaya vodka, a signature Russian import. This past week the Latvian LGBT rights group MOZAIKA urged for the boycott to stop.

"All Stolichnaya vodka for worldwide export is produced in Russia," said Kaspars Zalitis of MOZAIKA in a statement Aug. 1. Stolichnaya is produced by the Latvian company Latvijas Balzams and production takes place in Riga, the capital of Latvia. …The company employs over 600 people in Latvia and our much-weakened economy will suffer if the boycott continues."

Queer Nation responded to the release by saying that SPI, Stolichnaya's corporate owners, had long extolled the product's Russian roots until just before the call for boycott.

"More importantly, though the company claims to be friend to our community, it was silent as the Russian government considered this horrific law, and it said nothing after the law was enacted. Stolichnaya only spoke up after the boycott was announced. Friends do not keep silent when those they claim to value are under attack," said Queer Nation's statement.

SIDEBAR:

Lawmakers send letter to Kerry urging Olympic vigilance

By Matt Simonette

A group of 83 lawmakers, led by U.S. Rep. Jerrold Nadler, D-NY, last week sent Secretary of State John Kerry a letter seeking assurances about the safety of LGBT athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Russia.

The letter follows conflicting reports about whether the athletes would be subject to the harsh anti-LGBT legislation enacted in June. The International Olympic Committee in July said that it had received assurances that they would not, but offered no specifics. Russian Sports Minister Vitaly Mutko said July 31 that that was incorrect.

"No one is forbidding an athlete with non-traditional sexual orientation from coming to Sochi, but if he goes onto the street and starts propagandizing it, then of course he will be held accountable," Mutko told R-Sport.

A day later, however, Igor Ananskikh, deputy chairman of the State Duma's Physical Culture, Sport and Youth Policy Committee, told Interfax that, "We need to be as polite and tolerant as possible. That is why a decision has been made not to raise this issue during the Olympics."

Nadler's Aug. 2 letter inquired as to "what diplomatic measures the State Department is planning to take to ensure that American LGBT athletes, staff and spectators, and their supporters, are not arrested, detained or otherwise penalized during the Sochi Games. …In light of the importance of U.S. leadership on LGBT issues, and the quickly-approaching Sochi Games, we urge the State Department to determine the appropriate course of action to assure the safety and well being of LGBT and LGBT— supporting individuals involved in or attending the 2014 Sochi Olympics and Paralympics."


facebook twitter del.icio.us stumble upon digg google +1 reddit email




Windy City Media Group does not approve or necessarily
agree with the views posted below.
Please do not post letters to the editor here.
Please also be civil in your dialogue.
If you need to be mean, just know that the longer you
stay on this page, the more you help us.

Pedro Zamora's honor; N.J. trans student's troubles 2014-08-20
Dozens of LGBT groups sign Brown letter 2014-08-20
Sept. 7 Victory Fund event to feature Houston's mayor 2014-08-20
Israel LGBTQ leaders discuss history, state of movement 2014-08-20
Pride Toronto ED resigning; Kenya's anti-gay bill 2014-08-20
Tunney posts survey about Pride Parade location change 2014-08-18
Election surprises; Clementi foundation news; Manning 2014-08-13
Uganda Pride; Billie Jean King, Elton John hosting tourney 2014-08-12
Houston Mayor Parker at Sept. 7 Victory Fund Chicago event 2014-08-12
Dennis Sneyers announces run for mayor of Chicago 2014-08-05
National: Frank slams Obama; first responders back marriage 2014-08-05
LGBT orgs plan anti-Rauner push during Market Days 2014-08-05
ALMA 'extremely disappointed' in House anti-immigrant crusade 2014-08-03
Skateboarding's Tony Hawk joins Americans for Marriage Equality 2014-07-30
Housing activists rally to support SRO resolution 2014-07-30
Obama urged to reconsider pacts; a killing in Crimea 2014-07-30
Ryan White's mom's campaign; HIV removed from human cells 2014-07-30
Sneyers prepares for '15 mayoral challenge 2014-07-27
Rob Ford says he's not anti-gay; Glee trouble in UK 2014-07-22
Bill T. Jones among Obama honorees 2014-07-22
'Live The Wage Challenge' issued to Congress: Try living it 2014-07-22
Obama signs order protecting federal employees from bias 2014-07-21
Black LGBT trailblazers; Maddow talks Perry; ENDA debate 2014-07-16
World news: Conchita Wurst models; Ian Thorpe comes out 2014-07-16
Equality Illinois calls on Rauner to return DeVos contributions 2014-07-11
PASSAGES: Former U.S. Sen. Alan Dixon dies 2014-07-09
Tim Cook at Pride Parade; LGBT groups won't back ENDA 2014-07-08
Mich. gubernatorial candidate Schauer talks LGBT rights 2014-07-08
NGLTF withdraws support of ENDA 2014-07-08
National news 2014-07-02
Putin refuses Elton John; USAID, Nat'l Gay Chamber partner 2014-07-01
Obama announces ban on trans bias for federal employees 2014-06-30
Protesters decry Rauner's marriage views 2014-06-26
Gov. Quinn signs anti-bullying bill 2014-06-26
Chicagoans visit Dominican Republic as LGBT-rights advocates 2014-06-25
9 of 12 LGBT candidates advance in primaries 2014-06-25
World news: Developments in Uganda; Luxembourg passes marriage 2014-06-24
LGBT-rights activists in Uganda, Thailand talk situation 2014-06-24
State's Attorney hosts LGBT pride event 2014-06-19
LGBT groups band against ENDA's religious exemption 2014-06-18





Copyright © 2014 Windy City Media Group. All rights reserved.
Reprint by permission only. PDFs for back issues are downloadable from
our online archives. Single copies of back issues in print form are
available for $4 per issue, older than one month for $6 if available,
by check to the mailing address listed below.

Return postage must accompany all manuscripts, drawings, and
photographs submitted if they are to be returned, and no
responsibility may be assumed for unsolicited materials.
All rights to letters, art and photos sent to Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago
Gay and Lesbian News and Feature Publication) will be treated
as unconditionally assigned for publication purposes and as such,
subject to editing and comment. The opinions expressed by the
columnists, cartoonists, letter writers, and commentators are
their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of Nightspots
(Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay,
Lesbian, Bisexual and Transegender News and Feature Publication).

The appearance of a name, image or photo of a person or group in
Nightspots (Chicago GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times
(a Chicago Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender News and Feature
Publication) does not indicate the sexual orientation of such
individuals or groups. While we encourage readers to support the
advertisers who make this newspaper possible, Nightspots (Chicago
GLBT Nightlife News) and Windy City Times (a Chicago Gay, Lesbian
News and Feature Publication) cannot accept responsibility for
any advertising claims or promotions.

 

 

 



 

Thompson Twins' Tom Bailey on touring and Howard Jones
 
Kiss of 'Meth' Writer/performer Strafford on play on addiction
 
Israel LGBTQ leaders discuss history, state of movement
 
Honors roll in for UIC researcher
 
Three couples tie the knot in festive fashion
 
Windy City Times Current DownloadNightspots Current DownloadQueercast Current Download
Windy City Media Group BlogsJoin Our Email List!Donate Now



  News Index       Archives   About WCMG    Publications    Bars & Clubs     Calendar   Videos   Advertisers    OUT! Guide    Classifieds   AIDS @ 32
 Local | National | World | Politics | Obits | Profiles | Views | Entertainment | Theater | Dance | Music | Film | Art | Books | TV/Gossip
 Travel | History | Marriage | Youth | Trans | Lesbian | Celebrations | Food | Nightlife | Sports | Health | Real Estate | Autos | Pets | Crime



About WCMG      Contact Us      Online Front  Page      Windy City  Times      Nightspots      OUT! Guide     
Identity      BLACKlines      En La Vida      Archives      Subscriptions      Distribution      Windy City Queercast     
Queercast Archives      Advertising  Rates      Deadlines      Advanced Search     
Press  Releases      Event Photos      Join WCMG  Email List      Email Blast     
Upcoming Events      Todays Events      Ongoing Events      Post an Event      Bar Guide      Community Groups      In Memoriam      Outguide Categories      Outguide Advertisers      Search Outguide      Travel      Dining Out      Blogs      Spotlight  Video      News Videos      Nightspots Videos      Entertainment Videos      Queercast Videos      Comedy Videos     
Classifieds      Real Estate      Place a  Classified     

Windy City Media Group produces Windy City Queercast, & publishes Windy City Times,
The Weekly Voice of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Trans Community,
Nightspots, Out! Resource Guide, and Identity.
5315 N. Clark St. #192, Chicago, IL 60640-2113 • PH (773) 871-7610 • FAX (773) 871-7609.