Friday, February 14, 2014

GLAAD Media Award nomination for the daughter of anti gay Russian Federal lawmaker

Alyona Minkovski
By Brody Levesque | NEW YORK -- The daughter of a former Russian Olympic gold medalist figure skater and member of the Russian Duma (Parliament) lawmaker Irina Rodnina, who has a anti-gay voting record, has been nominated for a GLAAD Media Award. 
Alyona Minkovski, formerly of the Russian state owned RT Television News and now a hostess for HuffPost Live, was nominated for digital reporting on LGBTQ issues.
The GLAAD Media Award, seeks to honors “outstanding media images of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community that inspire change,” according to GLAAD's website. 
Minkovski's nomination has raised the ire of Russian LGBTQ activists who pointed out that her mother has championed Russia’s anti-gay laws and the ban on American adoptions of Russian orphans.
Rodnina also made headlines last September when she provoked an international outcry with a doctored and racially insensitive picture posted from her Twitter account that featured U.S. President Barack Obama and his wife Michelle.
Rodnina initially defended the image as an expression of freedom of speech, but backed down recently and apologized for the post, claiming that the offensive tweet and photo of the president and first lady had been sent from her account by hackers.
New York based RUSA-LGBT which congratulated Minkovski on her nomination in an English-language statement posted online Wednesday made direct reference to her mother's political activities; 
“Alyona, please, could you also try to inspire change in your mom?” the statement read. “Could you please let her know that all this child-”saving” is what makes children flee Russia?”
Supporters of Russia’s recent anti gay laws, U.S. adoptions of Russian orphans, and the adoption of Russian children by same-sex foreign couples have argued that the laws are designed to protect Russian children from exposed to 'non-traditional' relationships and being mistreated abroad. Recent polls conducted by Russian Polling Firm Levada show that nearly 78 percent of the Russian population think that homosexuality is a sickness and that it harms families and children.
Minkovski speaks English and Russian fluently. She was born in Moscow, but was raised in California. She earned her Bachelors degree in Political Science and minored in Film and Digital Media at the University of California.
Before joining HuffPost Live, she was host of "The Alyona Show" on the international news network RT (formerly Russia Today).
Rodnina — a winner of three successive Olympic gold medals and 10 successive World Championships — was chosen to light the Olympic torch this past week during the Sochi Winter Olympics opening ceremony, in recognition for her achievements.