Friday, June 16, 2023

Russian Powers Pushing Anti-Gay Policies to Please Themselves Not the Population, Pozharsky Says

Paul Goble

            Staunton, June 13 – In recent years, whenever there is a crisis, Duma deputies come up with new ways to discriminate against LGBTs on the basis of the assumption that “the people loves this,” but in fact, commentator Mikhail Pozharsky says, unlike in many countries, there is little evidence that the people do. Instead, the powers are acting to please themselves.

            The Moscow commentator points out that for 35 years, sex change operations have been legal in Russia and have generated little or no opposition. That suggests that “broad sections of Russian society did not care about this” and that no one felt traditional values were being hurt (

            Over the course of this period, “there were no public initiatives demanding a ban” on such surgery, Pozharsky says. “No major political parties inscribed the slogan ‘down with transgenders’ on their banners. But there were transvestites and drag shows in popular culture” and “there was a tacit consensus that gender reassignment is acceptable.”

            The new legislation has created a conflict were none existed. “If before it was enough to have a passive attitude, now, in order to maintain the same outcome, one must take active steps to defend the rights of transgender people.” And what this is above all an example of is how o

            “Of course, there is homophobia in Russia,” Pozharsky says. “But for the most part it is spontaneous and connected with a criminal subculture. Russia does not have organized grassroots homophobia as there is no Bible Belt and crowds of religious fanatics as in the US who organize to lobby for such legislative initiatives.”

            “What exists in Russia is power without any real feedback from the people because democratic institutions have been destroyed,” the commentator concludes. And “as an imitation of this feedback,” the powers that be have “designed for themselves the image of a wild population and are passing laws in support of this “fantasy,” one that is theirs alone.

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