it should really go without saying, but of course the nation wide ban against “propaganda of non-traditional sexual relations” adopted by the state duma in june of last year is undoubtedly repressive. ultimately it has been received as a state sanction of violence against LGBT people, as is plain to see from the dramatic increase in attacks against them. youth have been hit particularly hard as their support networks, which were minimal as it was, have been slashed now that adults can be charged with propagandizing and creating the false idea of the social equivalency of non-traditional sexual relationships to traditional ones. if you are attacked and attempt to report it, you aren’t going to find someone sympathetic. you should have expected it to happen after all.
importantly, the actual wording is very vague (and very short), and this is done on purpose because the ambiguity can be exploited and selectively applied. no one really has any idea what all is encompassed by propaganda.
while the nation wide law was enacted just a few months ago, variations of the law aren’t new at all, and russian lgbt have been dealing with them for some time with comparatively very little interest of the west. places that had enacted similar laws include: ryazan oblast (2006), arkhangelsk oblast (2011), kostroma oblast, saint petersburg, magadan oblast, novosibirsk oblast, krasnodar krai, samara oblast, and bashkortostan (2012). while western media and LGBT rights organizations conveniently have decided they want to start discussing this supposed Shadow of Ruthless Gay Oppression that has existed for years in russia, these laws were almost never applied.
ryazan oblast, where they first began, only ever saw the laws applied twice, where it resulted in $50 fines later appealed in court and resulted in a major legal victory for LGBT people in russia. in st. petersburg there was only one conviction, and three in arkhangelsk for the same picket.
my main point of contention from the very beginning was how this situation was being received and co-opted by westerners and homonationalists, and it’s this that they want to listen to the least. i’ve been called all sorts of things from a homophobe to a nazi for criticizing their actions in spite of the fact that i myself am a gay russian in a relationship with a man who lives in russia. this doesn’t matter to them. people like the disgusting michael lucas will openly denounce anyone who doesn’t follow lockstep with their narrative.
they’ve proven repeatedly that they are absolutely incapable of (or unwilling to perform) even the most basic research to understand the historical context and nuance of LGBT life in russia. in their arrogance, they are never prepared to learn but always ready to teach their brand of Liberal Enlightenment to Save These Savages from themselves.
if you want specific examples of how laughable their activism has been, consider the fact that a petition to obama to deny entrance visas to the politicians responsible for spearheading these laws, an idea that was actually supported by russian LGBT, gained a mere 8,000 signatures while All Out managed to get more than THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND signatures in their petition to the IOC in a move that will amount to absolutely nothing
or the fact that ugly ass stephen fry compared the situation to NAZI GERMANY which was instantly blasted by the russian jewish community
This is what kinda makes me uncomfortable about some of the coverage of the ‘anti homosexual propaganda’ law in Russia. Somehow, I don’t think that if it’s pitched as a second cold war, Russian LGBT people would be safer