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letters | games put spotlight on russian controversies

Honor athletes, don’t criticize Russia

I REGRET that the Globe did not find a place on the front page for the article “For some in Sochi’s gay community, attitudes trump laws” (Sports, Feb. 8).

The article was revealing about the Russian gay community’s viewpoints on protesting Russian anti-gay laws. Andrei Tanichev, who owns a gay nightclub in Sochi, poignantly said, “angry foreigners demanding that . . . [President Vladimir] Putin change Russia’s laws on sexual relations cannot help, and might only make things worse.” Tanichev further points out that Russian “society is not ready.”

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Tanichev’s words affirm something very important — let’s reserve the Olympics as a place to honor and celebrate the athletes from around the world. Let us show respect for and admire the host country’s culture and people.

Olympic athletes are prohibited from making political statements during the Games and everyone commenting on the games should follow their example.

I have been appalled to hear America’s media and politicians focus on every little glitch happening there. They are cheering for the failure of the Sochi Games.

Let the light of the Olympic torch shine. Let us be the welcomed guest and not the so-called “ugly American.”

John Meinhold

Portsmouth, N.H.

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