The first openly-gay late-night television host Andy Cohen, just gave Russia the well-deserved middle-finger, and it felt awesome. The award-winning media mogul is boycotting his own appearance as the co-host of the Miss Universe Pageant if it takes place in Moscow because of Russia's draconian law banning the “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations.”
According to OUT, Andy Cohen refuses to work in a country with "discriminatory policies [that] make it unsafe for the gays who live there and gays coming to work or visit.” In an interview, he told Giuliana Rancic that it "didn't feel right as a gay man stepping foot into Russia,” since it launched its war on homosexuality.
A change.org petition with almost 25 000 signatures has Andrew Cohen's back and is demanding that the event be held in another country.
"Many Miss Universe fans, myself included, identify as LGBTQ -- and surely many employees of the organization are, as well. How are any of these people, who might want or will have to attend the event, supposed to travel to Russia under these new laws and feel safe, when they could (and likely will) be beaten, arrested and/or detained on the spot for being who they are? Clearly, there is more at stake here than the organization’s reputation," the author of the petition writes.
The award pageant is set to take place on November 9th and there's no word yet on who his replacement might be. Let's hope it's no one and that the organizers will choose to relocate to a country that doesn't persecute human beings based on their who they love.