Boycott closing ceremonies: Defend Ukraine, freedom to assemble laws for demonstrators, journalists & gays

freedomtoassembleBoycott closing ceremonies: Protest Ukraine crackdown & actions against freedom of assembly for political demonstrators, gays & journalists.


The Ukraine violent crackdown against Kiev democratic protesters provides a renewed reason for a boycott of the Olympic closing ceremonies — whether for attendees or TV watchers like us at home. The crackdown is in direct response to Putin pushing Kiev to pass anti-protest laws and the threat to freeze aid. This is part of an ongoing effort to keep Ukraine out of the European Union and closer to the control of Moscow. Putin previously threatened to withhold natural gas to the Ukraine, making this power play a real threat to the future and freedoms of Eastern Europe.

Putin has been choosing the wrong side of the world stage. Putin has been working to prevent the missile defenses in Europe. He thwarted United Nations action in the Syrian crisis and made things worse by arming Bashar Assad and then helping assist a false peace plan.   At latest count, Assad had killed 136,000 of his own people in addition to the witness of chemical weapons being used and greater instability for the entire region.

Following this is a crackdown on the free press. Putin has banned and expelled an American journalist (former Financial Times journalist) from entering the country, making it the first time since the cold war that this has occurred. Since 2012 the government has passed a dozen new laws and amendments aimed at rolling back the free press in clear violation of the nation’s constitution. The new laws are being used to jail or harass political activists, journalists and non-government organizations.   Freedom of the Press has not seen such threats since the Cold War making these actions even more alarming.

Last June, their parliament passed an anti-propaganda law that had the effect of banning free speech rights for same-sex advocates by outlawing any public demonstrations. The ability to peacefully protest in public being denied to gays is the same fundamental right that is being denied Ukrainians. It’s one of the most important American principles as well as it is part of the Olympic Charter which Putin happens to be hosting (and is currently the face of). Freedom to peacefully protest is something that the Left, Right and Center can all agree on.

Finally is the damage Putin has done to the Olympics directly. It has been the most expensive Olympics in history ($50 billion) almost double from 2007 Olympics. One official with the International Olympic Committee believes that a third of the $50 billion may have been stolen. All of these factors together give the Olympics a bad deal and help reward a leader who has gone out of the way to enact anti-democratic and bad Olympic decisions. It would be good to send a message by walking away from the closing ceremonies.

  • Bob Clark

    I agree totally, Jason. In this kind of situation, I long for Ronald Reagan who fought the Soviet Union with strength and hard nosed diplomacy. “Dutch” also just made most Americans feel proud to be Americans (U.S. citizens, that is). The results of his strategy was to free hundreds of millions of eastern Europeans from the slog and misery of Soviet policies and imperial governance. And it didn’t involve war. This is one of America’s greatest all time achievements.

    Unfortunately, geography stands in the way of rescuing Ukraine quickly. Instead, it must be through a show of American strength, economically and through renewed focus on fortifying the super power status of the U.S military. Peace through strength. America needs to jettison the shackles of over regulation, rampant with the Obama Administration, and set its businesses and people free with a rejuvenation of the work ethic, reducing the welfare state to those who truly can’t lift a finger to support themselves.

    • 3H

      I’m sorry, but the freeing of Eastern Europe was not because of Reagan or America. It was the result of Eastern Europeans and their desire for freedom. Words didn’t free them, their own actions did.

      • .

        ‘Wail’ spoken by a person who didn’t give a rat’s matazzi for RR unless the POTUS was a Democrat replacing the incompetent Carter.

  • Sally

    I say boycott the whole Olympics. It is a sham. Totally.

  • Jack Lord God

    Yeah sure, Putin is a jerk, but lets not let the Olympic Committee off the hook here.

    I mean who the hell decided to host the winter Olympics in a country run by a homophobic dictator where the climate is like Boca while the rest of the planet has the average surface temperature of Pluto?

    I mean what do these clowns on the Olympic committee do in the off years? Make websites for Obamacare?

  • 3H

    Ya gotta love the OC. Restrictions on gays in Russia, bad; restrictions on gays in the United States, good.

    • .

      You again lie, as perusal.

  • 3H

    So, while we’re condemning the Putin, lets not forget the bigots here at home: Republican lobbyist trying to ban gay players from the NFL

    • .

      You lie again, as perusal