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Thread: Death Threats for Johnny

  1. #106
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    Quote Originally Posted by chelseamp
    I


    If anyone wants to read a great article that puts a spotlight on the role of the press in coverage of Johnny, go here:
    http://www.suntimes.com/output/olymp...nt-weir19.html
    I personally was stunned at some of the language used by the press in covering Johnny during the Olympics, which I think fanned the flames for some of the response he personally got from the public. I'm glad Kevin Nance, who wrote the article above, bothered to point this out.
    Weir himself is the one who fans the most flames about his sexuality. It is very obvious that he wants to come out of the closet yet probably was told to keep his orientation to himself. How do I know this? Well Weir is the one who uses the term "princessy" to describe himself, reveals that his nickname given to him by Bobek is "Tinkerbell" because of the way he moves across the ice [which could be attributed to any one of the US guys yet I have a hard time imagining anyone calling Savoie or Evan 'Tinkerbell'], actively participated in fluff pieces called "Weir Eye" which is a play on "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, constantly prances around in a fashion stereotypical to gay men... I could go on and on about the things Weir does that cast light on his sexuality. There are other gay men in skating who don't do things that draw attention to their sexuality like Brian Orser. Even Rudy Galindo doesn't go out of his way to draw attention to his sexuality. Yes Rudy is effeminate, however he doesn't behave in a manner that exaggerates his "femininity" to be provocative.

    Johnny projects this "hysterical queen" persona which seems quite at odds to who he really is as a person. Maybe adopting this public image is his way of giving himself more courage and puff himself up. However he cares too much about what people think of him and is hurt when he is criticized. I get this defensive vibe when I read his interviews.

  2. #107
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    Quote Originally Posted by antmanb
    With Weir though its a double edged sword though, why shouldn't the media report on him using innuendo when he himself uses the same innuendos in his interviews knowing full well that the reporter will either avoid asking him directly about his sexuality or if asked he will simply say he doesn't want to answer the question. The guy knows very well what he is doing especially with things like (taking it out of the arena of sexual orientation) declaring he loves wearing fur...many people in Europe won't batt an eyelid at that statement but he knows he's going to get North American media and fans fired up. That's seemingly been his goal (at least up until just after the Olympics) in most of his interviews.

    Personally i like that he gets people fired up but he also needs to recognise that these things also have repurcussions on him. I think he is beginning to realise since I don't think he was as forthcoming with such colouful press conferences leading up to and during worlds....maybe he got sick of the hatemail/"death threats" if Kathy Griffin et al are to be believed?

    Ant
    didn't he also get a big tongue lashing from the USFSA after his comments during Nationals? He played on it during the Olympics, but I'm not sure the death threats are the reasons for his 'good behavior' as of late in teh media....

  3. #108
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    Quote Originally Posted by soogar
    Weir himself is the one who fans the most flames about his sexuality. It is very obvious that he wants to come out of the closet yet probably was told to keep his orientation to himself. How do I know this? Well Weir is the one who uses the term "princessy" to describe himself, reveals that his nickname given to him by Bobek is "Tinkerbell" because of the way he moves across the ice [which could be attributed to any one of the US guys yet I have a hard time imagining anyone calling Savoie or Evan 'Tinkerbell'], actively participated in fluff pieces called "Weir Eye" which is a play on "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy, constantly prances around in a fashion stereotypical to gay men... I could go on and on about the things Weir does that cast light on his sexuality. There are other gay men in skating who don't do things that draw attention to their sexuality like Brian Orser. Even Rudy Galindo doesn't go out of his way to draw attention to his sexuality. Yes Rudy is effeminate, however he doesn't behave in a manner that exaggerates his "femininity" to be provocative.

    Johnny projects this "hysterical queen" persona which seems quite at odds to who he really is as a person. Maybe adopting this public image is his way of giving himself more courage and puff himself up. However he cares too much about what people think of him and is hurt when he is criticized. I get this defensive vibe when I read his interviews.

    There are (at least) two ways of looking at this. One is that this behavior is affected, inauthentic, and unnatural, and therefore he shouldn't act this way; that supposition leads to the conclusion that if he does behave in this fashion, that he 'deserves whatever he gets' because the natural, justifiable reaction to that behavior is negativity. Another way of looking at it would be that his behavior is simple self-expression, and that that in itself doesn't require him to divulge any further personal information; and further, that people who react in a negative fashion to his personality (and I do believe that this is what it is, personality) are the ones with the problem. I don't think he should alter his personality out of fear, but it's probably too late for that, since his personality is 'out there'. I'm pretty disturbed at the implication that if he would only be false and inauthentic he would be better off. Rudy Galindo is openly gay and HIV positive so if he's 'acting straight' I fail to see the logic in that. I don't believe he is; but then I am not someone who finds femininity in men innately offensive, provocative, or attention seeking, so maybe I wouldn't notice.

  4. #109
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    Quote Originally Posted by chelseamp
    There are (at least) two ways of looking at this. One is that this behavior is affected, inauthentic, and unnatural, and therefore he shouldn't act this way; that supposition leads to the conclusion that if he does behave in this fashion, that he 'deserves whatever he gets' because the natural, justifiable reaction to that behavior is negativity. Another way of looking at it would be that his behavior is simple self-expression, and that that in itself doesn't require him to divulge any further personal information; and further, that people who react in a negative fashion to his personality (and I do believe that this is what it is, personality) are the ones with the problem. I don't think he should alter his personality out of fear, but it's probably too late for that, since his personality is 'out there'. I'm pretty disturbed at the implication that if he would only be false and inauthentic he would be better off. Rudy Galindo is openly gay and HIV positive so if he's 'acting straight' I fail to see the logic in that. I don't believe he is; but then I am not someone who finds femininity in men innately offensive, provocative, or attention seeking, so maybe I wouldn't notice.
    The last thing i would want is for Weir to try to act straight just because the media/non-fans etc will jump all over him, i'm certainly not saying that's what i want. I want Johnny Weir to be exactly who he is. I think what Soogar was saying was that when Johnny is being his most candid in interviews he doesn't come across the same as his public persona, that being the case you assume that when he's not playing up to an audience/camera ie when he's being the real him he's less over the top and less "drama queeny" for lack of a better word.

    I've had this debate with many people over and over and i would never want anyone to have to hide their sexuality or pretend to be straight or "tone down" their camp/gayness/femininity but Johnny has always tried to ruffle people's and especially the establishment's feathers (which again i'll re-iterate is one of the things i love best about him) but (and i say this defending his choice to do so) if he will flounce through a regional competition, as he did a few seasons ago when he was competing there, wearing full make up and in drag, he has to know that people are going to ask him what he's doing....if you go out of your way to look out of the ordinary, then you must know its going to have a reaction (in my opinion its the reaction he likes) so you're going to have people question you. This would happen if he was in drag or just in any outift that seemed out of the ordinary for your surroundings...if he turned up on a beach wearing a ski suit i'm sure he'd get the same reaction, though i suspect the couture wouldn't be his style!!

    Ant

  5. #110
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    Quote Originally Posted by BittyBug
    Are you sure about Santino? Because Santino = feathers, and Johnny was already a swan last year.
    I'm thinking that Johnny could use the dress Santino designed for Sasha and do "Firebird"...but that's just me.
    Back to the topic. During the Olympics, I read some of the responses to the conservative blogger who posted about Johnny's CCCP jacket and his comments about Republicans. IIRC, their perception of Johnny's sexuality had very little to do with their anger. They didn't mind so much that he seemed gay as much as they minded Johnny's acting LIBERAL. I live in northern California and I don't put anti-Bush stickers on my car anymore because people have screamed at me, spat at my car and literally tried to run me off the road. In an alleged liberal haven, no less.
    There are a lot of nut jobs out there. I wish Johnny had spoken out about the threats at the time he received them. More than that, I wish that people weren't so threatened by the unfamiliar that they feel inspired to threats of violence.
    Wishing we could all get along,
    Rave

  6. #111
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    I had problems with Johnny's republican comment because it just was totally absurd. I was a republican who WAS rooting for him, but was turned off by that comment. He was from the US, and in the Olys that's really all that matters for me (Team US, hey! LOL) but if the rule is that I can't be republican and like Johnny then I guess I have to follow the rule

    It would not have been hard for him to say "conservative"... and I would have been more apt to agree with THAT statement (not all republicans are conservative, and vice versa). It just annoyed me though, I wasn't going to fly over to Torino to send him a message lol... I was willing to send him a Thesaurus though

  7. #112
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    Quote Originally Posted by antmanb
    This would happen if he was in drag or just in any outift that seemed out of the ordinary for your surroundings...if he turned up on a beach wearing a ski suit i'm sure he'd get the same reaction, though i suspect the couture wouldn't be his style!!
    I think the drag photo is soon to come out in Black Book mag, possibly next month. I've heard from someone who has seen it that it is very nice. Can't wait for that. I understand what Soogar was saying, but I disagree with the premise. If he acts a certain way in front of the cameras and another way in a more private one on one setting that's fine, because most people probably would. The problem isn't that he has a different persona, the problem people have is that he expresses an effeminate, homosexual persona in those settings, probably because that is another facet of his personality. I don't have a problem with that, but maybe it's just because to me people like Johnny are normal, and most other people are boring, instead of me seeing him as outrageous and more low-key people as normal.

  8. #113
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lanie
    Johnny says/does things that are inappropriate for someone representing their country at the Olympic Games. I do think these "death threats" could be exaggerated, probably more like very negative comments. Wearing the USSR jacket wasn't exactly smart during the Olympic Games, it ruffled many feathers, mine included. He was, IMO, not being a good ambassador of his country in mannerisms/behavior though he certainly is with his skating. But behavior counts more than what he does out there on the ice at the Olympics.

    BTW: I hope you all realize your "pro war freaks" and "maniacs" comments and crap like that just really makes you guys look immature. I'm a Republican. I voted for Bush. OMG!!! And, gasp, I like Johnny's skating. Johnny needs to learn he can say most things and get away with it but as a representative of the USA at the Olympic Games it's another story.

    I hate this "he wasn't a good representative for his country" stuff. The only way Johnny is required to represent his country at the Olympics is through his skating. If he chooses to wear a USSR jacket, who cares? As long as he's working hard and skating good programs, he is properly representing his country. You can be upset about the jacket, you can say it's anti-American, you can say that Johnny is anti-American for wearing it, but to say that he isn't a "good representative" goes against what he's expected to do. Johnny is there to skate. What he does in his own time shouldn't have any bearing on what kind of representative he is.

    People criticize Johnny Weir's behavior, but the truth is he has realized that he is a skater, all he has to do is skate. He doesn't have to be a role model. He doesn't have to make people happy. You don't have to like him to appreciate his skating. Maybe that's a "F*** you" attitude, but, honestly, that's not Johnny's problem. All we should be worried about is whether he's skating well or not. If he wants to sleep with men, party with the Russians, or B**** to the press, that's his life, not ours.
    Last edited by elingrace4eva; 07-30-2006 at 09:24 AM.

  9. #114
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    Quote Originally Posted by elingrace4eva
    I hate this "he wasn't a good representative for his country" stuff. The only way Johnny is required to represent his country at the Olympics is through his skating. ... What he does in his own time shouldn't have any bearing on what kind of representative he is.

    People criticize Johnny Weir's behavior, but the truth is he has realized that he is a skater, all he has to do is skate. He doesn't have to be a role model. He doesn't have to make people happy. ...
    First, I disagree with the idea that the only way athletes have to represent their country at the Olys is through their performance. I wasn't the only American who was shocked and disgusted when the US men's hockey team dealt with defeat by trashing their hotel room, or when a track team cavorted while wrapped up in the flag to celebrate a win. IMO, if athletes can't control themselves for the three weeks of the Olys, when all eyes are upon them, they don't have to go. At the very least, neither they nor their fans should complain when they are publicly slammed because other athletes are able to do what they can't.

    Second, I have no problem with the view that all Johnny has to do is skate. What I do have problems with, however, is the view that Johnny, doing the bare minimum of his job (i.e., the skating) should be entitled to the same respect and the same perks as others who are willing to do more than the minimum (i.e., being a role model, as well as the skating). There are very few fields where people who do only the minimum the job requires succeed as well as those who do a little bit more, and skating isn't any different.

  10. #115
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    Quote Originally Posted by attyfan
    Second, I have no problem with the view that all Johnny has to do is skate. What I do have problems with, however, is the view that Johnny, doing the bare minimum of his job (i.e., the skating) should be entitled to the same respect and the same perks as others who are willing to do more than the minimum (i.e., being a role model, as well as the skating). There are very few fields where people who do only the minimum the job requires succeed as well as those who do a little bit more, and skating isn't any different.

  11. #116
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    Quote Originally Posted by attyfan
    First, I disagree with the idea that the only way athletes have to represent their country at the Olys is through their performance. I wasn't the only American who was shocked and disgusted when the US men's hockey team dealt with defeat by trashing their hotel room, or when a track team cavorted while wrapped up in the flag to celebrate a win.
    Yikes, I'm out of the loop; I didn't know about any of that. Not that I would care; any idea I had that athletes are supposed to be 'role models' went out the window once and for all the day Ron Artest jumped into the bleachers and started mixing it up with the fans, lol.

  12. #117
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    Quote Originally Posted by chelseamp
    Yikes, I'm out of the loop; I didn't know about any of that. Not that I would care; any idea I had that athletes are supposed to be 'role models' went out the window once and for all the day Ron Artest jumped into the bleachers and started mixing it up with the fans, lol.
    I agree that athletes in general have been problems -- with me it was the Kobe Bryant matter, since I understood that he was touted as being a great role model much more than Artest. However, many skaters have managed to combine it all -- competitive success. making people happy, and being role models -- such as Michelle Kwan in the US and Midori Ito in Japan.

  13. #118
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    I really don't care about role models. In sports, I like to see the players do their best. That's what they are there for.

    Yes, it would be nice if the players behaved, at least, socially acceptable but who knows what's going on in their minds? Many of them have to deal with the media and the media wants a story to sell their schtick.

    If Johnny is dressing in drag for a party, it will not be unusual. Most gay men do not dress in drag unless they are entertainers. Straight men do like to act silly in drag.

    Personally, I do not believe anyone is trying to kill him.

    I want to see him skate his best.

    Joe

  14. #119
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    Quote Originally Posted by attyfan
    First, I disagree with the idea that the only way athletes have to represent their country at the Olys is through their performance. I wasn't the only American who was shocked and disgusted when the US men's hockey team dealt with defeat by trashing their hotel room, or when a track team cavorted while wrapped up in the flag to celebrate a win. IMO, if athletes can't control themselves for the three weeks of the Olys, when all eyes are upon them, they don't have to go. At the very least, neither they nor their fans should complain when they are publicly slammed because other athletes are able to do what they can't.

    Second, I have no problem with the view that all Johnny has to do is skate. What I do have problems with, however, is the view that Johnny, doing the bare minimum of his job (i.e., the skating) should be entitled to the same respect and the same perks as others who are willing to do more than the minimum (i.e., being a role model, as well as the skating). There are very few fields where people who do only the minimum the job requires succeed as well as those who do a little bit more, and skating isn't any different.

    First of all, skating is not Johnny's job. Johnny is an amateur, skating is his chosen activity. And secondly, if people want to respect Johnny for what he does, either skating wise or other, that's up to them. And it's up to you NOT to respect him, if that's what you choose. I personally respect Johnny for all of the reason you all choose not to. BECAUSE Johnny speaks his mind, is unabashadly himself, and doesn't apologize for the way he is is a reason to respect him, as far as I'm concerned. Respect is not a "perk of the job". There are plenty of figure skaters out there who I appreciate as skaters but DON'T respect as people. No one gains respect simply for being in some position. Respect is earned.

    And I would hardly call working extremely hard to become an elite at your sport is doing the "bare minimum" of it.

  15. #120
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    Quote Originally Posted by elingrace4eva
    No one gains respect simply for being in some position. Respect is earned.
    I think Johnny Weir is an excellent barometer for what people respect and what they don't. It never ceases to amaze me that what I most respect about him is the same thing that many despise. I'll read a new journal entry or a new Q&A and think he's 'selling out' and I'll hear others raving about how he's maturing. I sure wouldn't want to be him, in the middle hearing everyone's two cents about it. For his sake I hope he doesn't read these boards.

    I will say, about the death threats, that I had my e-mail address published on a far-right political board, and I got weeks of e-mails full of the most profane speech you can imagine, most in all caps with plenty of exclamation points. So I can only imagine what Johnny was on the receiving end of, just based on my little experience with it.

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