LGBT Groups, Dan Savage, gay bars call for boycott of Russian vodka

**Before you start reading: DON’T PANIC! Russian vodka, not all the vodka! You can still have vodka. Just not the Russian kind.**

In the wake of the disturbingly Draconian new anti-gay legislation in Russia– which basically bans everything from gay couples holding hands to saying anything in favor of gay rights, to even looking cross-eyed at a double rainbow in the sky– and the recent arrests of four gay Dutch tourists filming a documentary on gay and transgendered people in Russia– many are now calling for a boycott of both the 2014 Olympics in Sochi and all Russian Vodkas.

Via Dan Savage:


If you drink a Russian Vodka like Stoli, Russian Standard, or any of the other brands listed above, switch to another brand from another country, or even a local brand from a local distillery. Stoli is the iconic Russian Vodka and it’s returning to Russian ownership in 2014. Other brands like Russian Standard should also be boycotted. Do not drink Russian vodka. Do not buy Russian vodka. Ask your bartender at your favorite bar—gay or otherwise—to DUMP STOLI and DUMP RUSSIAN VODKA.

Own a gay bar in Seattle? Stop serving Russian vodkas.

Tweet your support using the hashtags #DUMPSTOLI and #DUMPRUSSIANVODKA. And tell you friends about what is happening in Russia and ask them to DUMP STOLI and DUMP RUSSIAN VODKA.

I have to say… I freaked out a bit at first, because my drink of choice is a “vodka-soda splash of cran,” and OH MY GOD what would I do if I could not drink that? I kind of incorrectly assumed that all the vodka is from Russia. But luckily, there’s lots of vodka from Holland, Sweden and other places (Like Ketel One and Absolut), so it’s cool.

Already, Sidetracks in Chicago’s Boystown– one of the most glorious places on earth, if only for Showtunes Sunday– has vowed to stop selling all Russian vodkas, and other gay bars are expected to follow suit.

The boycott is actually quite reminiscent of the Anita Bryant Florida Orange Juice boycott. In addition to people not buying any, it was not available in gay bars across the country, and Screwdrivers were replaced by Anita Bryant Cocktails made of vodka and apple juice. It was one of the most successful boycotts in American history, so I have high hopes for this one as well. Vote with your feet, vote with your dollar.

image: The Stranger