Among the many atrocities that have happened this year, Russian President Vladimir Putin has pushed into law a bill that infringes on many basic human rights, essentially prohibiting any rights/freedoms of those identifying as LGBTQ. The law, “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations to minor” is supposedly in place to protect the Russian society, more specifically, minors from the threat of homosexuality.
The newly added law places homosexuality in association with pedophilia, and gives the government the power to discipline, and fine those accused of provoking “propaganda.” The law places bans on gay parades, adoption by homosexual individuals, and significant fines to groups and associations that promote “non-traditional sexual orientation.” Russia’s increasingly offensive approach to the Gay Community has sparked protests, and outrage globally.
With the Sochi 2014 Olympic games approaching, does implementing such a discriminate law make much sense? Is it a reflection of the country’s culture, society and values? Does it uncover their ignorance? Or is this just the work of misguided politicians who need enlightening?
The international community has expressed their outrage on Putin’s intentions, and have even called for the boycott of the 2014 Games. Many people are pushing for Canada, the United States and many other developed nations to lead this boycott. There also seems to be some resentment from the 1984 Games in Los Angeles which was boycotted by several communist nations which was led by Russia.
Is this fair to our athletes? For their years of preparation and training, to only take it all away? Although Russia is discriminating against the LGBTQ community, it hasn’t criminalized homosexuality.
Sure, Russian authorities can and will hand out fines to anyone who promotes homosexuality, but what’s a couple Ruble (Russian currency) compared to several years prison, public whipping, or even death?
When someone says “Barbados,” what comes to mind? Beach, sand, holiday, and Rihanna? Am I right? Next time you think of this sunny paradise, remember that being gay in this country will land you upwards of ten years in prison. Moving onto the Middle East, I’m sure you’ve all heard of Iran. Among the many political and social issues surrounding this country, homosexual activity is subject to whipping and/or death if you’re convicted of being gay.
There are several other countries that could be added to this list, but you get the idea. In comparison, Russia is a lot softer than many other countries. Although this law is incredibly ridiculous and misguided in its purpose, things can change. Laws and social attitudes can change. Hopefully one day this law will be abolished and homosexuality won’t be such a big deal anymore.
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