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Madonna In St. Petersburg: 'Show Your Love And Appreciation To The Gay Community' - VIDEO

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As promised, Madonna spoke out for LGBT rights at her concert in St. Petersburg, the Russian city that recently passed a law banning so-called "gay propaganda".

Watch video, AFTER THE JUMP...

"Do we live in fear?" Madonna reportedly asked the audience, who of course responded in the negative.

Reuters offers more details about the demonstration.

Performing in black lingerie with the words "No Fear" scrawled on her bare back, Madonna urged the audience - most wearing pink wrist bands distributed at the door - to "show your love and appreciation to the gay community".

"We want to fight for the right to be free," she said.

The American singer has turned a two-concert tour into a platform for comment on Putin's Russia.

Madonna has also been using her stage to fight for the riot grrrl band Pussy Riot's release from prison.

There's no word on whether officials will try to fine the Material Girl for all this rabble-rousing, but Deputy Prime Minister Dmitry Rogozin called her a "former whore" — or "slut," depending on one's translation. And even some activists are criticizing the singer.

"One should not mix showbusiness with human rights activism," gay activist Yuri Gavrikov said. "If she wanted to support the LGBT community, she could have ... refused to hold concerts in Russia."

Here's a picture of Gavrikov's one-man protest outside the concert venue:

Gavrikov

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Comments

  1. Masha Gessen thinks It was nice. Everyone in the fan zone raised their arms to support gay rights.

    Bloggers have said she created a gay parade in the middle of homophobic Petersburg, and that It was much more effective than boycotting Russia would have been.

    Of course Gavrikov (and Alexeev in Geneva) are miffed because she's getting more attention than they did. Sour grapes.

    And to those suggesting she give her $$ to gay groups -- the Russian gay groups are constantly painted as Western-funded and anti-Russian. That would be a great sound bite for that idea.

    Posted by: KevinVt | Aug 10, 2012 10:16:13 AM


  2. Here's a statement from the LGBT organization Coming Out (Выход) in Petersburg:

    LGBT organization Coming Out, printed 330 rainbow posters with the saying "No Fear" that were distributed to the crowd. Although some posters were confiscated by security, their display had a huge emotional effect during the show. Many fans raised them during Madonna’s speech, and she reacted by saying "No Fear, that's right" before insisting that fear was the basis of all discrimination, and that tolerance could only be guaranteed by love, the opposite of fear. During the performance of "Like A Prayer", while dancers were raising a rainbow flag provided by a member of Coming Out and the Russian LGBT Network, Madonna took a “No Fear” poster from the crowd and raised it for 25,000 people to see. Same as for “Pussy Riot” support in Moscow, she had tattooed her back, this time with "No Fear." Gay bashing scenes from gay demonstrations in Russia, pictures of teenagers who died because of homophobia, and many gay and lesbian kisses were shown during the very political “Nobody Knows Me” Interlude Video.

    Madonna's support was extremely moving. Most of the mostly heterosexual crowd reacted positively to her message by raising pink wristbands that were distributed to everyone to support the LGBT community. The LGBT in the audience received Madonna’s support with both smiles and tears, and gratified her with the universal message “We love you” at the end of the show.

    Author of the "propaganda" law in St. Petersburg, Vitaly Milonov today declared that Madonna broke the law and is planning to charge her with a fine of 500,000 rubles ($17 000).

    Posted by: KevinVT | Aug 10, 2012 10:34:10 AM


  3. No doubt this was one of the rare beacons of hope for the young LGBT people of Russia. A world-renown icon performing and standing in solidarity with them, in a country that criminalizes such an act.

    well met, Madonna. And that protestor, and the miserable comment trolls, get it wrong. threre's much to be said about empowering people, and madonna did that. those of us who've listened to her all our lives know it, too. we tend to Come Out way before the "i can't stand madonna" gays do.

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Aug 10, 2012 11:02:46 AM


  4. Dear Madonna, when i bought Ray of Light at age 16 it inspired me to see the world differently and I Came Out. So, thanks.

    :-)

    Posted by: LittleKiwi | Aug 10, 2012 11:05:01 AM


  5. Incredible!
    And when good-looking straight male celebrities like Chris Pine, Chris Evans, Brad Pitt, or Ben Cohen say in interviews that they support gay marriage, the same people criticizing Madonna fawn over these "brave" and "courageous" men and how great it is to have their support and "why aren't there more celebrities like them?", and "I'd do him in a heartbeat", etc. But nobody questions whether they are doing it for the fame or the money. Nobody is wondering if they too donate to gay causes.

    But here's the thing:
    Madonna is already as famous as can be. And she's going to make 5 million per concert whether she makes a speech about gay rights or not. And assuming that she DOESN'T donate to gay causes is naive. How do you know she doesn't? And who are you to determine what the best form of activism is in her case? Her youtube speech in St. Petersburg may resonate with some kid in Latin America, or the Middle East, or the States that is struggling with his sexuality in a way that donating ALL the proceeds from the concert wouldn't.

    But her critics -of course- have no use for her support because it is unconditional. She reminds you of your "fag hag" in high school, who would hang out with you when nobody else would, but whose friendship you would cast aside in a second if it meant spending 5 minutes with the straight good-looking guy and gaining some "approval" that actually meant something to you because it came from someone you wanted to fkc.
    What a pity that some people never outgrow that.

    Posted by: Max | Aug 10, 2012 2:03:58 PM


  6. People have to keep in mind that the Madonna hatred as of late--especially the hatred going on online--is manufactured. It's not really a group of people writing here, as you can tell by the writing style, screennames, etc.

    Several thousand are crazy Lady Gaga fans who will soon turn 14 and grow out of it. A lot (not at this site, but at Yahoo, etc,) are angry conservatives. The person here seems like someone who probably didn't get a personalized reply to a crazy fan letter or something and went crazy.

    In short: there's no sense arguing with crazy.

    Posted by: JD | Aug 10, 2012 5:14:58 PM


  7. for those that care- feminist thinkers believe that the oppression of the patriarchy creates homophobia because of the association of homosexuality with women/femaleness/femininity. The heterosexual male culture sees all those mentioned as a subordinate group which can be exploited, for sex or resources or to take out aggression or psychological issues whatever. Madonna hits on this and I support this.

    The fact that this event happens and it brings out misogyny in people is depressing.

    Posted by: MaddM@ | Aug 10, 2012 8:14:39 PM


  8. Madonna has stood up for the LGBT in the 80's, 90's and now. During the 80's, a time where it was truly controversial to stand up for the gays Madonna took charge and defended them when everyone turned their backs on them. The 80's was a terrible time for the gays and hate was prominent do to growing exposure of AIDS. I love Gaga so much, but the rest her fans need to get their facts straight(lolpun)and have comprhensive understanding of history before they label her as a copy cat. Really hilarious, Madonna has been doing this for years and it's nothing new. If anyone copied anyone, It's Gaga because M did it first. I don't believe she copied M though. that logic doesn't really make much sense. No one copied anyone, people just need to get their facts straight.
    Go look up Madonna's gay speaches and support in the 80's and 90's online.

    Posted by: JH | Aug 10, 2012 11:38:16 PM


  9. Madonna is really saying "show me the money, show me the money".Simply one of the best lines ever written.


    Posted by: Madonna | Aug 16, 2012 11:49:05 AM


  10. "We want to fight for the right to be free," she said. Simply one of the best lines ever written

    Posted by: Madonna | Aug 23, 2012 7:02:36 AM


  11. "Do we live in fear?" Madonna reportedly asked the audience, who of course responded in the negative.Madonna was the only visible connection to the gay world. The only one.

    Posted by: Madonna | Sep 19, 2012 7:24:14 AM


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