Canadian Olympic speed skater Anastasia Bucsis has come out gay.
“I'm proud to be from Calgary, I'm proud to be an athlete, and
I'm proud to be gay,” Bucsis tweeted on Sunday to her more than
1,200 Twitter followers along with a photo of herself marching in
Calgary's Gay Pride Parade.
The speed skater reiterated that statement in comments to The
Globe and Mail,
saying that she is “so proud to be gay.”
Bucsis, 24, came out to family and close friends two years ago.
Prompted in part by the current controversy over a Russian anti-gay
law and how it might affect gay athletes and their allies during the
Winter Olympics in Sochi, she decided to make a public statement and
march in the parade.
“I could never promote that message of concealing who you are
with all of this going on in Russia,” she told the paper. “I'm
kind of happy that I did it on my own terms.”
Bucsis, who competed for Canada in the 2010 Vancouver Games and is
on the national team, is hoping to qualify for Sochi in long-track
She said that if she makes it to this year's Winter Olympics
she would focus on competing instead of making a public protest
against Russia's “gay propaganda” law.
“I also have faith in Russia,” she said. “I think – I
hope – that things will get better.”