Are you fracking serious?
Openly gay and usually level-headed MSNBC anchor Thomas Roberts is going to host the Miss Universe pageant in Moscow in November, “because it is a huge, visible opportunity for LGBT people. Everywhere.”
Over the last several months Russian President Vladimir Putin has approved new homophobic laws for his country. Yes, laws that criminalize and stigmatize lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people and their allies in Russia.
These actions attracted worldwide news coverage with some critics labeling it: Russia’s dark chapter in the history of gay rights. World leaders have expressed their contempt for these discriminatory laws with President Barack Obama declaring that “nobody’s more offended than me.”
In August, the Miss Universe Organization issued its own statement that Russian laws are “diametrically opposed to the core values” of Miss Universe.
I too am diametrically opposed to these laws and share in the President’s outrage. I am unafraid to say I am proud of my husband and my family—I’m proud of their love for me. I’m proud of the incredible steps forward equality has taken this year.
I’m proud of our nation, which still aspires to live up to the promise of its founding fathers. I am unafraid to tell you how traditional my husband and I are. After thirteen years, we continue to foster and grow our life together, with highs and lows, the folly and the fights. The same things many long term couples experience. Simple things: Trash night, dog walks, the remote control. Tough things: Homophobia, job loss, death.
You can’t get more traditional than that and, above all, we love each other.
So people may wonder: “Thomas, how can you accept this assignment? Shouldn’t you boycott Russia?” I am not going to boycott. Boycotting and vilifying from the outside is too easy. Rather, I choose to offer my support of the LGBT community in Russia by going to Moscow and hosting this event as a journalist, an anchor and a man who happens to be gay. Let people see I am no different than anyone else.
Well Thom, unless you are going to begin with: “Welcome to the Miss Universe pageant, I’m gay!” How are most Russians to know that you re actually gay considering that there’s pretty much a ban on acknowledging anything positive as gay.
I don’t suppose the fact that you work for MSNBC which is getting plenty of blow-back for airing and supporting the Sochi Olympic games doesn’t have anything to do with you hosting the Miss Universe Pageant also aired by NBC?
And as for hosting a sexist, misogynist event to promote LGBT equality. Not the best of moves, or spin.
For shame Thom. For Shame.