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An LGBT magazine named Putin its person of the year. This amazing cover shows why.

Zack Beauchamp is a senior correspondent at Vox, where he covers ideology and challenges to democracy, both at home and abroad. Before coming to Vox in 2014, he edited TP Ideas, a section of Think Progress devoted to the ideas shaping our political world.

It may sound crazy that LGBT magazine the Advocate has just named, as its person of the year, Russian President Vladimir Putin, who is infamous for sanctioning the brutal persecution of Russian gays. But the magazine's fantastic cover makes the reasoning perfectly clear:

the advocate cover putin

(The Advocate)

Yes, the Person of the Year cover text forms a Hitlerstache on Putin's face. And that's the point of the "award."

The Advocate explains that it picked Putin because "the Russian President became the single greatest threat to LGBTs in the world in 2014." So he's the Advocate's person of the year in sort of the same way that Adolf Hitler was Time magazine's person of the year in 1938. To see why Putin has earned this distinction, go read the Advocate's story, a bracing take on LGBT life in Russia.

For slightly more uplifting news on LGBT rights, look a little west of Russia, to Latvia.

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