Tuesday, July 9, 2013

World News

Russian lawmaker wants to publicly flog gay people & reeducate them
By Brody Levesque | CHITA, RUSSIA -- A deputy in a Siberian region legislative assembly announced Tuesday that he intends to set up a group to protect Russians from homosexuals. Last month, Alexander Mikhalov, who represents Zabaikalsky Krai, had proposed a legislative measure that would call for the Russian military and local authorities to be allowed to publicly flog homosexuals with a leather whip in civic areas such as central town or city squares.
“None of these people [homosexuals] are harmless, and they force us to defend ourselves,” said Mikhalov. 
“Real attacks on normal people are underway. We have to re-educate [homosexuals], or treat them. Homosexuality is a dead-end in Russia’s evolution.”
Anti-LGBT violence is on the rise in the Russian Federation. Within the last four months there have been several homophobic fueled attacks on pro-gay rallies in Moscow and St. Petersburg, and the killing of two men, in the southern Russian city of Volgograd and in the country’s Far East, which Russian police officials have said were likely motivated by anti-gay sentiment.
Russian President Vladimir Putin signed a controversial measure into law on June 30 that seeks to ban the “promotion of non-traditional sexual relationships,” while still insisting that gays have the same rights as other people. Last week, Putin signed a bill that sharply limits the adoption of Russian children by people from countries that allow same-sex marriage. The new law prohibits adoption by same-sex foreign couples whose homeland recognizes their union as marriage, as well as by single people or unmarried couples from those countries.
A Kremlin statement said that measure is intended to guarantee children a “harmonious” upbringing and protect them from “complexes, emotional suffering and stress. 
The idea of creating a group to defend citizens against homosexuals is supported by large swathes of society, Mikhailov claimed, adding that gay people were particularly “active” on the internet. “We must attract attention to this problem,” he said.
Nikolai Baev, member of the organizing committee of Moscow Pride said,
"This is a populist act designed to use homophobia to attract attention and votes. Mikhailov previously said that he wanted gays caught and flogged in town squares, now its a movement against gays which he also equated with pedophiles."
An opinion poll by the Russian pollster firm Levada earlier this spring indicated that more than 70 percent of Russians were against the public display of homosexual relations. Only 12 percent of Russians polled considered homosexuality as normal sexual behavior fully equal to heterosexual relations.