International LGBT rights group All Out released an emotional video yesterday that imagines what it might be like for an LGBT Olympian to win an Olympic medal in Sochi, Russia.
The video, titled Love Always Wins, depicts a figure skating pair winning a gold medal. The audience is cheering, the couple is ecstatic. Then the female skater looks into the crowd and spots her girlfriend waving a flag and beaming with pride. She skates over and they tearfully embrace.
But just as they're about to kiss, the camera fades and the skater opens her eyes as she realizes that this moment will never happen -- she can't acknowledge the person she loves most in the most thrilling moment of her professional life, because of Russia's law banning what LGBT visibility of any kind. Her girlfriend is stuck behind the glass, and the skater is frozen on the ice with the medal around her neck and a lump in her throat.
"What if living your dream meant living a lie?" the video asks before calling on the International Olympic Committee to stand by its principles and condemn anti-LGBT discrimination.
All Out's Executive Director Andre Banks said in a press release:
Russia's law makes it unclear whether public displays of affection, coming out on television by mentioning an athlete's loved one, or even hugging your partner after winning the gold medal could result in fines or deportation. Putin would like us to think gays and lesbians are welcome during the Olympics, but no one will feel safe and welcome while this law is in place.
It's not too late. China made serious concessions ahead of Beijing to ensure the 2008 Olympic Games were consistent with international standards and Russia should not be exempt from doing the same. Russia must overturn the law before the Winter Olympics.
Watch Love Always Wins, after the jump.