1. Mike Ryan says

    This guy is a sellout. Rather than actually help the gay community he is there for his own grandiosment. I’m disgusted by the guy. He should be boycotting the pageant and the Olympics rather than making sure Putin’s coffers are filled with American money.

  2. kaccompany says

    Good lord, people. His being there will draw exponentially more attention to LGBT issues there than anybody deciding to just not show up for the Olympics.

    I’m *disgusted* by the simple-mind posts that continue to appear here on the subject.

  3. litper says

    We must wait for Saturday. The Miss Universe will be LIVE on Russian State TV! Please don’t say any nasty things and let’s wait for him to actually do something!

  4. db says

    I think it’s great that he’s there and he’s not backing down. His reporting will do more for the gay people of Russia than the boycotts. The boycott announcements were important to draw attention but we have to continue to tell these stories.

  5. Richard says

    Why are so many people bashing Thomas Roberts? He has always been an outspoken gay advocate and role model — long before Anderson Cooper came out. He often includes a gay-rights segment on his MSNBC show. He’s in Russia speaking out against the oppression of Russian gays. What more should we demand of him? He deserves some appreciation and respect.

  6. RonCharles says

    Thomas Roberts is doing exactly the right thing. Across Russia, people will see an openly-gay man host the Miss Universe pageant and that will likely change a few minds about gay rights on a personal level. Furthermore, he is using his position as host of the pageant to call world attention to the plight of gays in Russia. More power to him!

  7. Jay says

    Sorry. As much as I love Thomas Roberts, I regret that he is shilling for Donald Trump. He should go to Russia as a journalist and actually report on the violence that glbtq people are subjected to these days.

  8. Michael says

    Yeah like your boycott of Stoli is doing a lot of good for the LGBT community in Russia…

    Having an out and proud and a VGL gay guy in the Russia spot light is doing so much more harm than you drinking Absolut.

  9. Profe Sancho Panza says

    His participation in this event helps to legitimize and make respectable Putin’s regime on the world stage. That’s wrong. And the fact that he’ll gladly cash Donald Trump’s paycheck makes it worse.

  10. Dennis says

    “Perhaps he could donate his fee to an LGBT rights group. And maybe Elton John could do the same. (When pigs fly).”

    You’ll never get that pig off the ground.

  11. oncemorewithfeeling says

    “VGL”? I remember the 70s, too. And lord knows what I demand from my political spokespeople is that they be “VGL”. Thank god he’s not fat or fem!

  12. Mike Ryan says

    I “bash” Thomas Roberts because he is selling you out. He is NOT seen on Russian television – not for one moment will the Russian government allow him to spout his gay propaganda so the claims that he is helping Russian gays is ridiculous. His camera time for the live event is also “not live” but delayed by Russian television to ensure he says little to nothing to advocate gay propaganda. He is there, and being paid, to lure you in to the Russian broadcast and generate as much income for the Russian government as possible. Stop being so naive.

  13. Sam says

    The dude works for MSNBC, not The New York Times. Why do people think he should be anything more than he is. A cable news guy. He’s handsome, gay and has an on-air job. He’s where he’s suppose to be at this stage of the game. Hosting a beauty pageant. Enough said.

  14. Mastik8 says

    Did he think Russia would provoke an international incident over him? Smell her. Did the Nazi’s dismantle the final solution because Jesse Owens won some gold and repudiated their overarching philosophy? Roberts’ Peace At Any Price stank will follow him forever. Trump’s spray tan and comb over will emerge unscathed as it is impossible to destroy a conscience that doesn’t exist.

  15. jimbryant says

    Why doesn’t Thomas Roberts go on Russian TV and criticize its anti-gay laws? Everything he’s done has been for the US audience, and has no effect whatsoever on what is going on in Russia.

    Thomas is a Benedict Arnold.

  16. jimbryant says

    Andy Towle’s lack of criticism of Thomas Roberts is starting to concern me. Andy is simply repeating a news story from the news chain. It contains basically no criticism of Thomas from Andy’s perspective.

    I know Andy Towle can – and does – criticize Republican politicians. I would like to see Andy extend this criticism to people in the media who have let us down, such as Roberts.

  17. Damien says

    Since it is not about the money, I assume he is donating his stipend to some worthy cause that will support equal rights for LGBT folk around the world? I mean, since it’s not about the money. That would be pretty cool.

  18. emjayay says

    Just as a pragmatic career move, I don’t see any semi-serious news guy hosting the Miss Universe pageant. These mindless sexist bimbo extraganzas were outdated decades ago. Talk about the Male Gaze….Jeeze. And backed by Donald Trump? It’s a triple axel tackfest.

  19. Richard says

    He’s not hiding who he is. He interviewed a Russian television personality who was fired for coming out. He’s in Russia with his HUSBAND. Even if Russian media don’t broadcast this information, people in Russia and around the world will know. Regardless of what anyone thinks of Donald Trump or beauty pageants, Thomas Roberts’ presence in Russia is a positive thing — because of who he is and what he’s brave enough to communicate about himself.

  20. E. Carpenter says

    Listen, Roberts is doing everything right – it’s much better that *he’s* there instead of some straight guy who wouldn’t say a thing about the Russian gay bashing.

    And for the ignorant guys who keep claiming that no Russians will see these interviews – really? They have computers, you know. And the internet. And a lot of Russians are technically adept, speak European languages, and use VPN to get past any filtering the government’s imposing. Your stereotypes about Russia are outdated.

    Roberts’ interviews are being seen and discussed in Russia, as are Elton John’s interviews and all the other reporting outside of Russia. So stop pissing on the good guys, and let them do what they can.

  21. says

    He’s not “openly gay” in Russia until he says he’s gay in Russia. “I don’t know if I’m here to promote gay rights…”? I think that would be up to you, Mr. Roberts. I’m fairly confident that the onscreen ID in Russia won’t list your sexuality; you’ll have to at least acknowledge your husband publicly, pointedly and often and hope it gets past the censors… Or SOMEthing…

  22. MaryM says

    This show is live on Russian TV is it?

    Well then Thomas Roberts is absolutely obliged to speak out against the fascist laws while on stage. No ifs, ands or buts about it.

    Raising awareness in the US about the persecution the Russian gays are experiencing, is all well and good, but it’s not making an iota of difference on the ground in Russia.

    If he has a live TV platform, and a privileged position he better use it.

  23. Will G. says

    Totally agree with Mike Ryan. We have exactly the same perspective.

    He does have the opportunity to address the issue during the “Live” broadcast, but I seriously doubt that he will and if he doesn’t, he played right into Putins (and Trumps) hand …”see we don’t discriminate in Russia. No problems here”


  24. Rob Sevinson says

    F you Uncle Tom. Counter the images of fun he and his husband are posting on social media, with the blight of the gay Russian population and we can see the real reason he traveled and is hosting. It’s a great time for the two of them and paycheck received. Thomas deems himself great at deflecting but this is one time he’s caught. The only thing that would make this a good opportunity is if he’s caught in yet another sex scandal in good ole Russia.

  25. E. Carpenter says

    So Roberts needs to pull a Joan of Arc act or you guys won’t be satisfied with him? What are YOU doing, personally, to change the environment in Russia? Staying home in your safe home sniping at anyone who actually takes some action? That’s what it looks like.

    He’s brought his husband and kid to the country, in spite of threats, in spite of the really horrible environment, as a way to be there as openly as possible and be as outspoken as he can be. You can bet that behind the scenes he’s done a lot to provide them security (and Trump’s done a lot to provide security), as any of us would do, but they are there as a family, and that is brave of all of them.

    If they show themselves having a good time – great, it’ll be all over the web, including all over the web in Russia, showing Russians a happy gay family. Do you really think that the Russians are living in 1990, and only have State TV to see this stuff? How ignorant you are!

    I’d say he’s way ahead of you guys in positive pro-gay, supportive actions. Even if he doesn’t do everything you claim you would do if you were in his shoes – easy claims to make, sitting in safety in the US or UK.

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