Last night President Obama made a lengthy appearance on the Tonight Show, where Jay Leno brought up the subject of Russia’s crackdown on LGBT people.
Jay Leno also brought up the recent crackdown on gays in Russia, comparing the country’s treatment of homosexuality to the way Nazi Germany persecuted Jews. President Obama said he has “no patience for countries that try to treat gays or lesbians or transgender persons in ways that intimidate them or are harmful to them.”
“I think Putin and Russia have a big stake in making sure that the Olympics work, and I think that they understand that for most of the countries that participate in the Olympics we wouldn’t tolerate gays and lesbians being treated differently. They are athletes. They are there to compete.”
Russia has said that the anti-gay laws will be enforced during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, which have sparked protests and demonstrations for boycotting the Sochi Olympics. “If Russia wants to uphold the Olympic spirit, then every judgment should be made on the track or in the swimming pool or on the balance beam and people’s sexual orientation shouldn’t have anything to do with it,” Obama said Tuesday evening.
NBC has posted the full appearance in several clips.