Sunday, 19 January 2014

Russia: Flag Day

The gay media has gone into predictable full-on "RUSSIA = ANTI-GAY NAZI STATE!!" mode over this one.
I chose to pick Boston Edge - one of the least hysterical - as they might know a bit about the need for security at a high-profile sporting event.
Lest some suicide bombers turn up and kill people like at the last Boston Marathon.
A few brief points...

1. Pavel Lebedev was detained. So far he has not been arrested or charged.

2. This account from, citing his fellow activists, said he didn't just unveil a rainbow flag; "Lebedev ran before torchbearer with rainbow flag".

3. He would have been stopped by security for doing something similar - gay or not - at any public event. 

4. For example, 37 people were arrested protesting the London Olympic Torch Relay in 2008.   

5. During the 2012 UK Olympic Torch Relay at least two people were detained for protesting, and two arrested. In Derry, the route had to be diverted after scuffles with the police. Does this make the UK a fascist state?

6. I seriously doubt the Russian security would have any idea what his rainbow flag represented, so this may not be a gay thing.

7. They may have had other security concerns on their minds as at least 39 people were killed in suicide bombings last month, and seven people died in a shoot-out with suspected Islamic terrorists on Wednesday. Just a thought.

I applaud Pavel Lebedev and all Russian gay campaigners, but - as ever - can non-Russian gayers get some perspective on this?


  1. "The gay media has gone into predictable full-on "RUSSIA = ANTI-GAY NAZI STATE!!" mode over this one."

    And you have gone into predictable blind-eye Russophile mode, Richard. Your constant attempts to pretend that Russia is essentially no worse in its treatment of LGBT people than Britain and other countries are woeful. Deep down you must know it doesn't add up and is not supported by fact. Your impulse to do this in the face of reality appears to be based on nothing stronger than a sentimental allegiance to Russia because it was once the Soviet Union - which was obviously fabulous too.

    And you are evidently not as informed as you think. The rainbow flag itself is now illegal in public in Russia, as is holding hands by same sex couples.

    You are falling into being an apologist for a shitty state of affairs in acountry with very poor human rights, Richard. It ought to be possible to be anti-Daily Mail and NOT still be such an apologist, but you just aren't managing it.

    1. 'The rainbow flag itself is now illegal in public in Russia, as is holding hands by same sex couples.'

      You actually believe this?

    2. Maybe your a friend of Johnny Weir.

    3. "Maybe your a friend of Johnny Weir."

      Thanks for the insight, Senator McCarthy. Would you like the U.S. to revive the House Un-American Activities Committee, too?

  2. That's why Russia has a law against gay propaganda, because they need one. The gay "rights" movement has gone too far.

  3. 'And you are evidently not as informed as you think. The rainbow flag itself is now illegal in public in Russia, as is holding hands by same sex couples'.
    Have you ever been to Russia? If what you say is correct, then why haven't the authorities painted over the ceiling at the foyer at Mayakovskaya metro station in Moscow? As for it being illegal for same-sex couples holding hands in public, then the Russian police would be busy arresting thousands of men and women, especially in the south of the country, where men holding hands, or women holding hands is a traditional sign of close friendship and has no sexual connotation.

  4. Perhaps you would like to see the footage of the Russian Police breaking up peaceful protests in the documentary "Young and Gay in Putin's Russia":

    It does seem that the Russian police don't need security concerns to justify arresting gay protesters and they do seem rather more concerned about gay propaganda than protecting the victims of homophobic crime.
    It appears that it hasn't occurred to you that the Russian State might be aware that eyes of the world are on the country at the moment and anything to do with the Olympics is particularly scrutinised. Lets hope that things do not deteriorate further after the Olympics, when no doubt the world's media will move on.

  5. The LGBT = Let God Burn Them
    And he will. :-)

  6. I fear, anonymous, that you have marked yourself out for burning. Doesn't the bible say: "Judge not lest you be judged"? and "Let he amongst you who is without sin, cast the first stone"? Aren't the two greatest commandments "Love their neighbour as thyself" and "Love the Lord thy God with all your strength and might". You haven't even accorded God the respect of referring to Him as He. If you can display such godlessness in 11 words/symbols, I strongly suggest that you stay healthy. x

  7. Regarding #6: The bystander in the blue "hoodie" who shows up at 1:58 says "Why don't you explain to them what that flag means?"; someone else uses a rather un-PC word (maybe at the level of "queer" or "fairy" in terms of strength) and then Mr. Blue Hood uses a very hostile term equivalent to US English "faggot" -- I'm not a native Russian speaker and couldn't catch all the words, but that's the gist of it.

    And the somewhat "bearish" police officer repeatedly asks the kid what the flag means -- but I suspect he probably knows perfectly well that in the West, the rainbow flag is associated with LGBT activism. (I've seen plenty of jokes and political cartoons on Russian-language websites relating to the "gay rainbow flag," so I would assume that most of the general Russian public knows about the gay symbolism.)

    I would add that in the Russian-language comments attached to the YouTube video, the comments that more or less support the kid with the flag while criticizing the police and/or homophobia in general have gotten a lot of thumbs up -- presumably mostly from other Russians, along with a few non-Russians like me who can read the language.

    Also, among the negative comments in Russian, there are a couple that don't attack the kid for being gay, but do attack him for being so fixated on "Gay Rights" at a time when the rights of all Russians are (supposedly) under threat.

    And, of course, there are also some Russian comments that are just plain homophobic.

  8. Isn't it customary in these media to give credit to the parties who bring such news items to your attention? Shoddy!