Cher says no to Sochi Winter Olympics for Russia's antigay laws

Add Cher to the growing list of entertainers who are protesting Russia's antigay laws.

In an interview with Maclean's, the LGBT icon and mother of transgender celebrity Chaz Bono revealed that she turned down an opportunity to perform at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics.

"I can’t name names but my friend called who is a big oligarch over there, and asked me if I’d like to be an ambassador for the Olympics and open the show. I immediately said no," she told the Canadian newsmagazine. "I want to know why all of this gay hate just exploded over there. He said the Russian people don’t feel the way the government does."

Lady Gaga and Madonna have already expressed their opposition to the legislation. Consequently, both have run into trouble with the Russian government; the two stars have been accused of violating their visas while performing in the country.

Other celebrities who are concerned about Russia's homophobic stance include Prison Break star Wentworth Miller who even came out as gay to decline an invitation to the St. Petersburg International Film Festival.

Actors George Takei and Stephen Fry have written open letters, calling for the Olympics to be moved to a different host city (Takei suggested Vancouver as an alternative).

Actor Tilda Swinton defiantly posed for a photograph in front of the Kremlin while holding up the LGBT rainbow flag and British indie band Autoheart released a homoromantic Russian-themed video for their single "Moscow".

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