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Thread: USOC adds sexual orientation to its non-discrimination policy (Oct 11)

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    Missing Tdizzle and SDiggity golden411's Avatar
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    News USOC adds sexual orientation to its non-discrimination policy (Oct 11)

    U.S. Olympic News (Verified account)
    ‏@USOlympicNews
    The @USOlympic board voted to revise the non-discrimination policy within the code of conduct of its bylaws to include sexual orientation.
    11:54 AM - 11 Oct 13
    https://twitter.com/USOlympicNews/st...39449267306496

    Excerpt below is from:
    Sexual orientation added to U.S. code
    Updated: October 11, 2013, 2:19 PM ET
    Associated Press
    http://espn.go.com/olympics/story/_/...n-conduct-code

    COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. -- The U.S. Olympic Committee board revised its non-discrimination policy to include sexual orientation, a nod to its disapproval of the Russian anti-gay law recently passed by the Olympic host country.
    At his annual address to the USOC Assembly on Friday, CEO Scott Blackmun said the federation is not in the business of trying to influence Russian policy.

    "The fact that we do not think it is our role to advocate for a change in the Russian law does not mean that we support the law, and we do not," Blackmun said.

    The board passed the measure Thursday, a week after chairman Larry Probst, a new member of the International Olympic Committee, said he would support a similar change to the IOC Olympic charter. Currently, it does not mention sexual orientation as a form of discrimination.

    With the Sochi Olympics less than four months away, Blackmun said the USOC is seeking clarity from the IOC on what will and won't be regarded as violations of the IOC rule against using the Olympic stage to make political protests or demonstrations.

    Meanwhile, he said the USOC has given the athletes freedom to express themselves in the lead-up to the Games "however they see fit."

    Blackmun pointed to last week's comments from skier Bode Miller, who said, "I think it's absolutely embarrassing that there's countries and there's people who are that intolerant and that ignorant," as an example of the USOC's tolerance of any opinion.

    Hat tip to @SarahandDrew.

    (Lest anyone wonder, I made an executive decision to start a new thread for this update. Wanted to keep it separate from the discussion in the Ashley Wagner thread.)

  2. #2
    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Then we will see what the athletes want to do, but I'd advise them to wait for the IOC to adopt a similar policy.

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    Missing Tdizzle and SDiggity golden411's Avatar
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    To be clear:
    The OP above was intended merely as a neutral FYI.
    In at least two other threads, I previously have stated my belief that I am in no position to pass judgment on any athlete for limiting her/his comments on this topic.
    The news item above does not change that belief.

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    I don't know how this affects (or protects) the athletes who make a statement regarding the Putin law, but it's a great gesture on the part of the USOC. This is far better than a boycott. It will make life for Russian officials very interesting: after all, the country can't very well ban the entire American Olympic team.

    I hope other countries join us, but it won't bother me at all if we stand alone.

  5. #5
    Wicked Yankee Girl dorispulaski's Avatar
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    Yes, I like this action by the USOC very much. If the IOC does the same, I will like it even better.

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    Progress will win in the end. It always does.

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    IOC and USOC are merely sports organizations, not political entities. In Olympic Charter, it says no discrimination blah blah... It is regarding to the sports competitions and judging. It is not about allowing any political propaganda. Not to mention political propaganda to minors. No political demonstration and propaganda are allowed under Olympic Charter. If USOC sets its foot too deep, USOC will violate the Olympic Charter.

    I think USOC's such move is a moot point. There has never been discrimination in US competitions, team member pickings, and judging related to sexual orientation, at least no record or evidence on doing that. But it's fine to add it. What USOC is doing is just trying to silent the outcry on the Russian law. Whoever cry the loudest gets the cookie.

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    Blue, I'm sure the USOC has lawyers who went over the Olympic Charter with a fine-tooth comb to be sure that the statement was within the rules. These things are never said off the cuff.

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    "The fact that we do not think it is our role to advocate for a change in the Russian law does not mean that we support the law, and we do not," Blackmun said.

    Awesome. These words were chosen carefully, but I'm very glad they said outright that they do not support the laws.

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    Quote Originally Posted by dorispulaski View Post
    Yes, I like this action by the USOC very much. If the IOC does the same, I will like it even better.
    Wishful thinking. If anything, they're more likely to add it after Sochi, just to appease the Russians and make sure the Olympics is drama-free (which, of course, it won't be).

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    IOC is not formed by a few western extremely liberal countries.

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