Wednesday, August 30, 2023

Let Russian Daria Kasatkina Play Under the Rainbow Flag

The New York Times has a great piece on how the war in Ukraine has turned tennis into a battlefield, the highlight of which was learning that Elina Svitolina's grandmother refuses to leave Odesa because she couldn't bear to be apart from her cat! (I asked Damian if he'd leave the Upper West Side if Moscow invaded and reached, say, Weehawken, N.J., right across the Hudson River from us and he said no way!) Also fascinating to learn that many Ukrainians are abandoning their first language -- Russian -- and migrating to Ukrainian. But one critical point that I think is lost in the vitriol many Ukrainian players feel toward their Russian counterparts, who they see as complicit in their silence, is that they and their families could EASILY GET MURDERED if they are too vocal in their opposition to Putin. (Surely they must understand this, no?) 

That goes double for Daria Kasatkina, who is in violation of Moscow's so-called "anti-gay-propaganda" -- now with even more hatred -- law by merely existing. Her suggestion of playing under the Rainbow flag may have been in jest, but it sounds like the perfect solution to me. 

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