Out Olympic Delegate Caitlin Cahow Urges World to Celebrate Diversity at Sochi Games

Out lesbian Caitlin Cahow, Olympic silver medalist and bronze medalist in women’s ice hockey, has penned an article published in USA Today about diversity in sports and what her selection as as part of the White House Delegation to the Games means for LGBT visibility in Sochi.

Said Cahow in part:

Caitlin CahowWhen I was chosen to represent the United States as part of the White House Delegation to the Games, it was with the acknowledgment that our delegation was assembled to emphasize the diversity of the American experience. Despite the selective focus of some, I am not going to Russia to represent but one community. Our delegation carries a message and a symbolism, which both includes and extends beyond the LGBT issues highlighted in the headlines. I have the extraordinary honor to serve alongside fellow delegates like Janet Napolitano, the first female Secretary of Homeland Security, and Billie Jean King, whose leadership and advocacy for equality in sport has had a ripple effect through all facets of our society. These women are among the trailblazers who have fought to make so many of my dreams possible.

While the world unites in celebration of athletic achievement, we also have the opportunity to reevaluate how well we are living up to the historic ideals of the Olympic Movement. Though we have made great strides for equality, discrimination persists in sport and society.

You can read the article in full HERE


  1. Mike Ryan says

    In my book she should urge a full boycott and very publicly step down from the Delegation but to her, winning a medal is far more important then the lives of Russian gay brothers and sisters. There will be more violence at the Sochi Games and it wouldn’t surprise me in the least that Putin et al spin it to the press that the violence is gay inspired or backed despite the fact that we all know gay people will have nothing to do with it. These are just the Winter games and missing them isn’t that big of a deal. Sochi is off my viewing schedule.

  2. Don W says

    Jay, I disagree. Human rights of all kinds are under threat in Putin’s Russia. Pussy Riot was not about LGBT issues but more about the freedom of dissent in the face of religious extremism.

    Our community needs to stand with others who are being oppressed, or we can’t expect their support in return.

  3. Sam says

    Caitlin is not going to Sochi to win a medal. She’s won her medals already. And she’s a fantastic person to send to show people that we are not afraid to stand up for LGBT people – athletes or otherwise. Refusing to go if you are LGBT just looks like cowardice. I do not see why an openly gay athlete should be forced to give up a dream they have to appease a bunch of folks back home who have nothing here to lose by complaining that they are going to participate in the Olympics.

    If you think the image of an African American athlete participating at the Olympics in Berlin during the Third Reich wasn’t more powerful than if that athlete had stayed home, you’re blind.

    Go Caitlin!

  4. samthor says

    By all means let the athletes compete and so their best…. but alone. The spectators should stay home. Don’t spend money in Russia’s hotels, restaurants or trains. Don’t patronize the sponsors, or networks. Find something better to do with your time and money. Instead of being distracted by sports entertainment…. go do something that actually matters.

  5. MaryM says

    Nice that she will represent all of the USA but she has an obligation to condemn Russia’s fascist homophobia while in thqy country. Otherwise she is a collaborator.

  6. alex says

    I’m with Sam. Other than an asterisk in the record book, what did the 1980 and 1984 boycotts accomplish?

    There will be moments of civil disobedience (although not from the official US delegation). But, those moments will happen and they will be seen by the whole world.

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