Valentine’s Day is just around the corner. Sure, February 14 may reek of superficial commercialism, but your gift doesn’t have to! This year, make your gesture of love a gesture of equality.
Since the State Duma passed the anti-gay “propaganda” law, Russia’s fierce crackdown on LGBT rights has been in the Olympic spotlight. While most official sponsors remain eerily silent, a host of corporations and NGOs have launched campaigns in staunch support of the LGBT community.
Too many people are shamed, criminalized or subjected to violence simply for sharing what is in their hearts. Give your valentine something that truly says ‘yes’ to love!
1. For the Beer Drinker
Brew Dog’s “tongue-in-cheek, limonnik berry infused double IPA”
*50% of the profits raised through this beer will go directly to charities that represent oppressed minorities around the world.
“Hello, my name is Vladimir. I am a beer for uber hetero men who ride horses while topless and carrying knives. I am a beer to mark the 2014 Winter Olympics. But I am not for gays. Love wrestling burly men on the Judo mat or fishing in your Speedos? Then this is the beer for you!”
Stock up here
2. For the Pampered
Lush is synthetic and hate-free
“We’ve partnered with All Out: a fantastic non-profit organization that’s helping people all over the world get the freedom they need to love who they choose. From petitioning a world leader to organizing a flash mob, All Out is challenging homophobic laws and attitudes, and is working to end violence and discrimination against the LGBTQ community worldwide.”
3. For the Fashion Forward
Newly launched Purple & Gold tracksuits
*All proceeds benefit the Russian LGBT Network, which provides services for victims of hate crimes as well as social and legal advocacy
“A project between the [Louis B. James] gallery and the print-on-demand company Print All Over Me, Purple & Gold is a capsule collection of artist-edition tracksuits that are an art-meets-fashion response to the Olympic Games in Sochi, considering Russia’s reputation as a place largely inhospitable to gay people.” – The Wall Street Journal
They are limited to editions of 25-100, so hurry to place your order!
4. For the Understated
Simple and to-the-point hats by Human Rights First
*All proceeds will benefit Human Rights First’s work to promote equality in Russia and beyond
“Stay warm and stand strong with those fighting anti-LGBT legislation in Russia and beyond! This black winter knit hat – inspired by the Sochi Olympic Games and embroidered with the words “sochi. equality.” – is our gift to those making a donation of $15 or more. Quantities are limited, so don’t miss out on this opportunity to receive your hat and donate now to support our work to advance equal rights for all.”
Olympian David Pichler, modeling above, is currently in Sochi as part of the HRF delegation.
5. For the Sporty One
American Apparel’s P6 Clothing Line
*The proceeds will support the Principle 6 campaign and go directly to LGBT advocacy groups in Russia fighting discrimination and anti-gay laws
“Wearing the Principle 6 merchandise will help uphold the Olympic principle of inclusion and underscore that Russia’s anti-LGBT discrimination is incompatible with the Olympic movement.”
The collection features briefs, a crop top, and a duffle bag – something for everyone! Order here