Is Johnny Weir a Russian Agent?
Yesterday, a progressive news site called Americablog reported a strange tidbit about figure skater Johnny Weir’s online resume. Weir, who has been hired as a commentator for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia, and who has made some bizarrely flippant comments about the country’s vicious anti-LGBT laws, had this line in his Premiere Speakers Bureau online bio
Due to his ability to understand global art and culture and his sporting expertise, Weir has recently begun working as a Goodwill Sports Ambassador to Japan and also works with the Russian Children’s Welfare Society and Russian Consulate in New York City.
I don’t know that that really amounts to an endorsement of gay-bashing, but it was deemed controversial enough by Weir’s people that they struck the line from the bio. A spokesperson then claimed it was a “typo,” while Weir posted this one his Twitter feed.
I have never worked at or for a Russian consulate. I don’t know where people get this stuff. XO
— Johnny Weir-Voronov (@JohnnyGWeir) December 12, 2013
BuzzFeed then hopped on the story and called LBGT activist Ken Kidd, who didn’t buy the “typo” explanation and further slammed Weir for being a Russia apologist.
“If the Russian government isn’t paying him, they should be — he might as well make some money from his collaboration,” Kidd said. “If he is such a Russophile, Weir ought to put the Russian LGBT community before his new career at NBC and speak out about the LGBT Russians who are being arrested, jailed, beaten, raped, tortured, and murdered by their own government.”
BuzzFeed also reported that the ‘consulate’ line was in a second, different online bio as well. Whatever his relationship with Russia, talk of him being an “agent” is probably a little overblown.