OSU Holds Panel on Sochi Winter Olympics

OSU flyerCORVALLIS, Ore. — The Winter Olympics begin next month in Sochi and they’re shedding light on homosexuality laws in Russia.

A panel at Oregon State University is talking to the public Wednesday afternoon about current Russian laws.

One panelist, William Husband, says one of the goals of the discussion is to address misconceptions Americans have regarding Russian laws. Husband, an OSU professor who specializes in Russian history, says last year President Vladimir Putin signed an anti-gay propaganda bill into law.

“In other words, it makes it virtually illegal to even mention homosexuality in the presence of youth,” he said. “And in the wake of that, there’s been a rise of violence against gays in Russia that we thought should be called attention to.”

He says it’s not illegal to be homosexual in Russia, but he hopes more international discussion will call attention to the rise in violence against homosexuality since the country’s new law went into effect.

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