YouTube has removed an anti-gay video urging Russian voters to back constitutional reforms that would ban same-sex marriage and extend President Vladimir Putin’s rule, following an outcry from LGBT advocates.
Reuters reports: The clip, posted online this week, shows a boy going from joy to heartbreak as he discovers his new parents are men. The ad had created an online furore that experts said could help garner support for the reform vote, which could let President Vladimir Putin extend his long rule. … “Here’s your new mum. Don’t be upset,” one of the new adopting parents tells the child as he introduces his partner, who promptly offers the boy a dress. A woman working at the orphanage watches on, then spits on the floor in disgust. “Will you choose such a Russia? Decide the future of the country – vote for amendments to the constitution,” a voiceover says, suggesting a vote for Putin protects traditional values.
More from CNN: At issue is a national vote that would amend the constitution and reset the clock on presidential term limits, allowing Putin to stay on as president past 2024, when his second consecutive term in office comes to an end, among other things. The set of changes also includes controversial amendments such as defining marriage as a “union between a man and a woman.” Russian law does not permit same-sex marriages or partnerships, and adoption laws generally bar same-sex couples from adopting.The vote was originally scheduled to take place on April 22, but those plans were scrapped amid the coronavirus pandemic, dealing a blow to the Kremlin’s plans to push through the changes.The video, released Tuesday, drew immediate condemnation online. Stimul, a group of LGBTQ activists, called for an investigation of the video, saying it “incites hatred and hostility” and violates Russian law on online communication.