Reporter James Kirchick was kicked off the air of the RT network Wednesday after he refused to talk about Bradley Manning and instead spoke about the Russian government’s anti-gay laws.
“Being here on a Kremlin-funded propaganda network, I’m going to wear my gay pride suspenders and speak out against the horrific, anti-gay legislation that Vladimir Putin has signed into law,” Kirchick said.
RT, formerly Russia Today, is funded by the Russian government, which recently passed a sweeping law that bans the public discussion of gay rights and relationships in the presence of children.
As Kirchick continued to speak about the laws and the government’s funding of the network, one RT host insisted to Kirchick, “You have to come over here and see for yourself.”
“You have 24 hours a day to lie about America, I am going to tell the truth with my two minutes,” Kirkchick went on to say after RT hosts tried to cut him off.
Shortly after Kirchick said this, he disappeared from the program’s split screen.
“A quick explanation now for the beginning of our coverage of the Bradley Manning sentences,” one host said later in the program. “We invited a guest on to discuss the fate of the whistleblower, but he used the chance to discuss his views on other unrelated issues and that’s why we had to take him off air. We would like to say sorry for any confusion caused.”
RT also refused to continue Kirchick’s car service, according to the reporter.
“True fact: (RT) just called taxi company that took me to studio to drop me off on the side of the highway on way to Stockholm airport,” Kirchick wrote on Twitter Wednesday morning following his appearance on the network.