SPORTS

Nick Symmonds speaks out against Russian anti-gay laws after silver medal

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Standout American track athlete Nick Symmonds won a silver medal Tuesday in the 800 at the World Championships in Russia, and he used his platform to speak out about that country's anti-gay laws.

'If there's anything I can do to champion the cause and further it, I will,' Nick Symmonds said.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, Symmonds dedicated his 2nd place finish to his "gay and lesbian friends." Russia has been heavily criticized worldwide for passing laws that many believe persecute the nation's LGBT population.

"Whether you're gay, straight, black, white, we all deserve the same rights," Symmonds said in Moscow. "If there's anything I can do to champion the cause and further it, I will, shy of getting arrested."

Russia's resort town of Sochi is getting set to host the 2014 Winter Olympics. President Barack Obama said last week that he was strongly against calls to boycott the Sochi games, saying that the best way to protest Russia's laws is to send American athletes and watch them win.

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