Russia has just given a new twist against human rights, in this case in particular against the LGTBIQ collective, with a new version of the so-called “law against gay propaganda”.
The State Duma (Lower House of the Russian Parliament) approved the controversial law – now only pending ratification by the Senate and the president – that prohibits LGBTIQ propaganda, pedophilia and sex change, in advertising, media media, books, films and audiovisual services.
As of its entry into force, advertising aimed at any age “should not contain information that promotes or shows relationships and/or non-traditional sexual preferences, pedophilia, sex change.”
One of the main promoters, the chairman of the Duma Committee for Information, Alexandr Jinshtein, indicated that the document “covers all means of information dissemination, including computer games.”
According to the agency Sputnik, the new law “provides for huge fines for the dissemination of ‘information that promotes or shows non-traditional relationships and/or sexual preferences, pedophilia, gender reassignment.’ Violations imply fines of up to 10 million rubles (more than $165,000) in the case of legal entities, and deportation for foreigners.”
In this way, everything that one wants to interpret as “propaganda” directed at any age is penalized, and not only at minors, as it was up to now.
In fact, various activists and human rights organizations have denounced that it will imply an almost total ban on the representation of this community, including displays of affection in public and any type of support for their rights, which exacerbates the homophobia already rooted in the Russian society.
Furthermore, it includes any other type of information that shows non-traditional sexual relations and what it calls “perversions”, and puts homosexuality, pedophilia and even adultery in the same bag.
The level of absurdity could be verified last October, when the Russian Book Union asked the deputy Jinshtéin to review a series of works of classical literature in search of propaganda about non-traditional sexual relations, pedophilia, drug addiction, suicide and adultery. , between them Romeo and Juliet Y Anna Karenina.
“We ask you to explain whether the following works, including the classics that are part of the list for school studies, promote the denial of family values,” the vice president of the Book Union, Leonid Palko, said then in a message.
In particular, it was then requested to study the presence of propaganda on suicide in Romeo and Juliet of William Shakespeare and the propaganda about drug use in Morphine, by Mikhail Bulgakov. Leo Tolstoy’s novel Anna Karenina was suspected of containing adultery propaganda, while the gentle gift, of Mikhail Sholokhov, was accused of promoting sexual violence and The Possessed, by Fiódor Dostoevski, of childish seduction. The novel Lolita, of Vladimir Nabókov, according to Palko, should be analyzed for propaganda of pedophilia.
Although Jinshtein’s response was that it was “not planned” to include the classics in the ban, the fact shows where the shots are going in Russian society.
Special operation on the minds
The law comes in the midst of the so-called “special military operation” in Ukraine and, according to several parliamentarians, it is directly related, since it must help Russia to win in its confrontation with the “new world order” promoted by the West.
“A special military operation takes place not only on the battlefield, but also in the minds of the people. (…) Russia is a redoubt for the protection and preservation of traditional values. A real LGBT revolution is taking place in the West,” Jinshtein said during one of the Duma readings of the law. The politician even went so far as to affirm that “the politicians of the West today ask for the legalization of pedophilia.”
On the battlefield itself, calls to fight Western “Satanists” seem to be frequent. At the beginning of October, the main Russian television channel showed and praised the motivational speech given to his troops by the Chechen commander Apti Aaudinov, who assured that they were fighting “so that their children would not be forced to be LGBT and go to the parades. gays”.
In one of the earlier readings of the bill now passed by the Duma, renowned ultra-conservative cleric and blogger Andrei Tkachev likened the legislation to a great military victory: “When this war ends, the spiritual war will not end. God gives victory, but not to just anyone, but to those who are morally worthy of accepting it,” he stated.
Own Chairman of the State Duma Vyacheslav Volodin fully shares these ideas. “with the departure [de Rusia] of the Council of Europe, demands to legalize same-sex marriages have become a thing of the past. Attempts to impose foreign values on our society have failed, ”he wrote on his personal profile recently.
But this is not a new phenomenon, nor did it start with the war in Ukraine. It is a rope that has been tightening in recent years, after a period of certain freedoms. President Putin has been the main champion of this homophobic current.
The truth is that even more difficult times await the LGTBIQ community in Russia in the future, in which dreaming of basic rights such as freely living their sexuality, or simply “coming out of the closet”, will continue to be a chimera.