As the Winter Olympics unfold on the other side of the globe in Sochi, many of us in Los Angeles have wondered how best to respond to news of Vladimir Putin’s “gay propaganda” law. How should we react to the International Olympic Committee’s refusal to speak out on behalf of the gay athletes all over the world who look to it for inspiration and support? Should our politicians, some of whom are openly gay, stand with Russian politicians and continue the Sister Cities program?
There have been calls for boycotts, demonstrations both poignant and confused, and plenty of anger. But perhaps no city in the world finds openly gay culture and ethnically Russian culture living side by side as in West Hollywood. Civic leaders meet, neighbors look after each other, and, even when views differ, the two populations strive to work and thrive together.
We at Frontiers, the 32-year-old leader for news, views and lifestyle within the gay community in the U.S., remain committed to the LGBT movement. All these conversations about Russia and the Olympics are important, and our news team, led by Karen Ocamb, has covered the action in Moscow, Washington and our own backyard in Boystown. But one concern is paramount: We must help our LGBT brothers and sisters wherever they are.