Gay Reporter James Kirchick Talks His On-Air Protest On Russian TV: 'It's A Way To Shame These People'
We brought you news of reporter James Kirchick's takeover of a news segment on Russia's RT network on Wednesday. Kirchick, who's openly gay, denounced the country (and its journalists that work for Kremlin-funded news sources) for its anti-gay legislation.
Now Kirchick explains how and why it all came about!
In an interview with FP on Wednesday afternoon, Kirchick explained his rationale for hijacking the segment. "I generally have a policy not to go on RT or Press TV or any of these dictatorial channels," he said. "But I had been so energized with all of the news out of Russia about the anti-gay laws that I thought this would be a good stunt to pull." Kirchick is no fan of stations like RT -- which he described as "disturbingly popular" among American youth -- and said that he had previously pulled a similar stunt on Press TV, which is funded by the Iranian government. "I consider it a way to shame these people who call themselves journalists and work at these stations," Kirchick said. "The only justification for anyone who is a Westerner, who lives in a free country, to appear on these stations is to behave in this way and show your utter contempt for them," he added.
Kirchick did the appearance from a television studio in Stockholm -- the rainbow suspenders were picked up in the bargain bin of a local second-hand clothing store -- and the studio's staff gave him a standing ovation for his performance. As for RT, Kirchick said they of course weren't happy about the stunt. A producer for the channel called Kirchick and informed him that RT wouldn't be paying for his cab ride -- a small price to pay. The channel later called the cab company taking him to the airport and tried to get his driver to leave him on the side of the road. But his cabbie would have none of it and ended up giving him a free ride."
Nice! What was your reaction to Kirchick's takeover yesterday, Instincters?
Do you appreciate his penchant for taking on "dictatorial channels"??
Think he gave his cab driver a big tip?