What is being referred to as an anti-gay bill is up for a vote later this month in the Russian parliament. The proposed law is said to be an attempt to “promote traditional Russian values as opposed to Western liberalism,” as reported by Yahoo.
Supported by the Kremlin and the Russian Orthodox Church, this legislation would make it illegal to provide information to minors which is considered to be “propaganda of sodomy, lesbianism, bisexuality and transgenderism”.
If homosexuals so much as kiss in public they could be fined up to $16,000.
Russia, of course, has a very different culture from many that exist in the western world. Sometimes, it’s easy to forget just how fundamentally different their culture is form the U.S., especially since the nation became so westernized, in some respects, following the end of the cold war.
Vladimir Putin has been accused of using this bill and actions against other minorities as a strategy for diverting attention away from the unpopularity of his governing.
Though the bill is perceived to be a contributing factor in “a wave of protests against President Vladimir Putin’s rule”, there has been no real outcry against the anti-gay legislation among mainstream Russians. According to recent polls the majority of Russians think homosexuality is “morally unacceptable and worth condemning.” Many believe homosexuality is caused by “a sickness or a psychological trauma”, according to ABC News.
If this legislation is approved it will, no doubt, spark criticism from nations where homosexuality is accepted. This is such an emotionally charged issue the Russian government should be prepared for a backlash, not just among gays in Russia but all over the world.