Putin Signs Newer, Nastier 'Don't Say Gay' Law. Ron DeSantis, U Up?
Vladimir Putin started a war against Ukraine that's going extremely poorly for him, and anti-LGBTQ hate is always popular in Russia, so yesterday Putin signed a viciously anti-LGBTQ "propaganda" law that basically bans any discussion of LGBTQ people, anywhere, anytime. Look over there, Russians! белка! (Means "squirrel.")
If you ever need a reminder why Putin is so popular among American Christian fascist types, this is why. They're more like him than they are like normal, functioning, patriotic Americans.
Longtime listeners might remember that Putin signed a similar "Don't Say Gay" law back in 2013, which purported to protect minors from being exposed to LGBTQ "propaganda." The new one dispenses with pretending it's about "protecting the children." Reckon Ron DeSantis's next "Don't Say Gay" law probably will too.
The new law expands that ban to spreading such information to people aged 18 and older.
The new law outlaws advertising, media and online resources, books, films and theater productions deemed to contain such “propaganda.”
It also broadens the existing restrictions by banning information about gender transitions to be spread to minors and bans information deemed to be propaganda promoting pedophilia.
Oh how clever how it shoehorns pedophilia into a law explicitly targeting LGBTQ people for discrimination. Let's see how American hate outfits like Ben Shapiro's Daily Wire are covering that:
Once again, our Christian fascists are a whole lot like their Christian fascists.
This law, at least on paper, is not going to be used to throw people in prison, but it is going to slap huge fines on them. Per the AP, 100,000 to 4 million rubles, or $1,660 to $66,000 for individuals. For public officeholders and corporations, they're much higher.
As CNN explains, what this law largely does is make it illegal to suggest that it's normal to be anything but heterosexual, or to be in a non-heterosexual relationship, or to be transgender. And that's on the internet, in movies, in books, literally just anywhere.
CNN also puts this into some context:
The ban was rubber-stamped by Putin just days after a harsh new “foreign agents” law came into effect, as the Kremlin cracks down on free speech and human rights as its military operation in Ukraine falters. [...]
In early March, just days after Putin ordered a full-scale invasion of Ukraine, the Russian government adopted a law criminalizing the dissemination of what it called “deliberately false” information about the Russian armed forces. The maximum penalty is 15 years in prison.
Bulwark writer Cathy Young, who was born in Moscow and is a good source for viewing Russian politics through the appropriate lens, writes that this is clearly intended as a distraction from Ukraine, aimed at a population that's a hell of lot more virulently homophobic than the West is. She quotes Aleksandr Khinshtein, the member of the Russian Duma principally responsible for the law:
The special military operation is taking place not only on the battlefield, but also in people’s minds and souls. Today, in fact, we are fighting to ensure that Russia, as the president puts it, does not have “parent number one, parent number two, and parent number three” instead of Mom and Dad. It is obvious that our confrontation with the West is largely civilizational in nature. That’s because Russia is an outpost for the protection and preservation of traditional values in opposition to the new pseudo-values imposed by the West, first and foremost being the normalization of sexual deviancy.
Young explains that all the argle-bargle about "parent number one" and so forth is from Putin's September speech when he, in desperation, announced he was annexing (stealing) four regions of Ukraine and magically making them Russian. Vyacheslav Volodin, the speaker of the Duma, is calling it the "answer to [Antony] Blinken" law, because they have to lean really hard into this being a cultural war against the decadent West and Blinken has spoken out against it.
And then this:
After the legislation was passed by the Duma, Andrei Tsyganov, editor-in-chief of the “patriotic” website Katyusha and chair of the expert council of the Public Commissioner on the Protection of the Family, celebrated it as a “ban on the propaganda of American-European values” and gloated that “the pederasts who stand at the head of Global Sodom are going to burst with rage.”
Sounds like any old claptrap we're used to hearing from the American hate groups like the Family Research Council or Liberty Counsel. (Extremely recent example from ... yesterday.)
She cites many more examples from the Russian media, explicitly tying this to Ukraine, and in general tying it to Russia's campaign against westerners and Russians they deem to have western-type values. She also suggests that a good bit of this might be intended for the pro-Russia MAGA fascist audience in the West that loves this kind of shit.
We are sure their state-run media cannot wait to play clips of American rightwingers talking about how holy and pure and good Russia's new "Don't Say Gay" law is.
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