Billie Jean King says she won’t keep quiet about LGBTI rights when in Russia
Out tennis champion, Billie Jean King, has told CNN she feels there is no reason not to voice her opinion on LGBTI rights whilst in Russia for the Sochi Olympics.
The Whitehouse announced King would be part of the official delegation at the Winter Olympics next year. Whilst the tennis legend, who is also a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, has yet to have her role in the delegation clarified, she has told CNN she plans to speak her mind.
“I'm definitely going to give my opinion,” King said. “But I hope we have lots of security at the same time... I must say, there is a part of me that will be very alert, very alert, because you just never know what's going to happen.”
King added, “By even being present and not boycotting sends a very positive message, We're here. We hope you'll think about it. We hope you'll change. And you're not alone,”
King is hopeful Russian President Vladimir Putin will back-flip on the nation’s anti-gay laws, once he understands the impact the laws are having on Russia’s LGBTI citizens. She reasons that bullying and hatred should not be tolerated.
“This is just an issue that has to be resolved, because what's happening is because bullying and hate, the hatred involved is becoming very, very prevalent now,
“You can be really hateful and you can bully. You can kill others and get away with it now because of this, I think, ambiguous new law that says it's OK to really hurt us.”