Clare Balding Defends Olympic Presenting

Clare Balding

Clare Balding

Broadcaster Clare Balding has defended her decision to work at the Sochi Winter Olympics in Russia, saying she thought it sent “a more powerful message” to go, rather than to boycott the games.
Last year Vladimir Putin signed a bill into law which bans the “promotion of non-traditional sexual relations” to minors. The new law caused international protest, with many calling for a complete boycott of the games.
Talking to the Daily Mirror, Clare explained her reasons for attending: “I felt it was very important. I was the lead presenter on the Winter Olympics, I am openly gay, in a country that would rather I didn’t exist.
“I think it is a powerful message to say to anybody – whether they are a nurse, a doctor, a teacher – this is OK, you can go and do this and be the best you can be at it.
“I personally believed it was a stronger statement to go than not to go and that was why I went.”
During the Winter Olympics Clare was attacked by Twitter trolls, who accused her of caring more about profit than principles.
She responded: “No, I’d make more at home, be safer and have an easier life. The reason I’m here is to do my job. Visibility before avoidance.

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