‘Gay Propaganda’ Ban Advances Through Russian Upper House In 137-0 Vote

Russian Upper House

As we celebrate the death of DOMA and the rejection of Proposition 8 by the US Supreme Court this week, it is important to remember that the fight for equality is facing setbacks in other parts of the world. RT reports that Russia's Federation House approved a bill that would fine anyone disseminating "gay propaganda," with harsher fines going to anyone who uses the internet or media to do so, and foreigners face a 15-day jail sentence followed by deportation. The bill was approved in a landslide vote of 137-0 with one senator abstaining.

Federation Council speaker Valentina Matvienko spoke before the vote, using the all-too-familiar tactic of hiding bigotry behind the welfare of children:

"[Gays and lesbians] are ordinary equal members of the society. As adults, they are entitled to decide how they want to live. But when it comes to minors [the ban on propaganda] is not someone’s whim, but a demand from the society."

Russian society is 88% in favor of the ban according to a poll by the Russian Public Opinion Research Center (VCIOM), showing that it's not just politicians who have a long way to go in terms of treating gays and lesbians like full citizens and human beings.

The bill has been condemned by Russian and foreign gay rights activists, but President Putin, who has yet to sign the bill into law, claims without a trace of irony that the bill does not impose sanctions on nor violates the rights of sexual minorities. He, too, chose to hide behind children, stating:

“Some countries … think that there is no need to protect children from this. We Do.”


  1. Jon says

    Sure the Russian people are 88% behind this law, the Government of Russia had made sure to give out lies and false propaganda to sway the minds of the Russian electorate.
    What a hateful bunch of people, up there with the Right Winged Anti-gay, Evangelical Bigots (those that spread lies and inuendo in place of facts) in America!

  2. Strepsi says

    Fascists. AIded most closely, of course, by the Russian Orthodox Church.

    We must send support to our poor brothers and sisters there.


    Putin is such a classic “bread and circuses” dictator, he has everyone in circles over Snowden and the new Cold War, as well as “Gay Propaganda”, to deflect from the horrific economy of his own country.

    Fact: at the height of the cold war Russia and the U.S. had the same life expectany: 70. In the U.S. it is now 79 years, and in Russia 69 years. They are letting their country become a hell hole, and blaming “The West” values for it, as usual.

  3. terry says

    Of course everyone is against the gays. If you’re not then you’re guilty of giving support and thus breaking the law. Russia has NEVER known a time in its history when it was not under an oppressive government. As a people they were neutered centuries ago. The next stage is to list supporters as insane and lock them away until they are well i.e. never. After all if you know you’re going away for a very long time and you still voice open support you must be crazy. Are they any different than the Evangelical wing of the GOP?

  4. ChadSF says

    Well there goes our plan to visit Russia. Just kidding! Not even the slightest interest in traveling there. They are not getting any of my money and yes, BOYCOTT RUSSIA AND BAN THEM FROM THE OLYMPICS!!

  5. Tom in SF Bay Area says

    It’s time to start getting really vocal about boycotting travel to their Olympics!!! We also need some athlete and celebrity allies to intentionally break this draconian law to force their hand.

  6. todd says

    Does anybody ever wonder if they do this kind of stuff just to be polar opposite to the US? I mean when we have a SCOTUS ruling assisting the equality of all, they tighten up on it just a little more. It’s like the cold war days, a tit for a tat.

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