In the middle of his St. Petersburg performance last weekend, the ever vocal Elton John took the opportunity to take potshots at Russia's anti-gay policies and agenda again reports The Moscow Times. While performing a song, John addressed the crowd asking, "Is Tchaikovsky's beautiful music 'sexually perverting?" bringing up the famous Russian composer Pyotr Tchaikovsky who is widely believed to be gay.
John also criticized the removal of a statue erected to honor Apple founder Steve Jobs from outside of a St. Petersburg technical college after Jobs successor, Tim Cook, disclosed to the public that he is gay. It's assumed that Russia still sells Apple products, which John recognized and called out the hypocrisy behind the statue's removal.
"Can this be true? Steve's memory is rewritten because his successor at Apple, Tim Cook, is gay? Does that also make iPads 'gay propaganda'?"
This isn't the first time the singer spoke out during a concert in Russia; he dedicated a 2013 Moscow concert to 23-year-old Vladislav Tornovi who was raped and murdered after revealing he was gay. Fans and civils rights groups asked John not to perform in Russia, but John told the Moscow crowd why he continues to perform in the country.
"You took me to your hearts all these years ago, and you've always welcomed me with warmth and open arms any time I've visited. You have always embraced me and you have never judged me. So I am deeply saddened and shocked over the current legislation that is now in place against the LGBT community here in Russia."
"In my opinion, it is inhumane and it is isolating. People have demanded that because of this legislation, I must not come here to Russia. But many, many more people asked me to come and I listened to them. I love coming here."
John invited Vladimir Putin to meet the country's LGBT youth to listen to their experiences, however the disillusioned leader has yet to respond to the singer's request. St. Petersburg is the epicenter of the nationwide ban on "gay propaganda," as it was the first city to pass an ordinance banning the so-called "propaganda." The nationwide federal legislation version is modeled after St. Petersburg's ordinance.