Saturday, May 27, 2006

Russia's Gay Pride Parade Ends Ugly

Riot police broke up an attempt by gays & lesbians to stage Moscow's 1st gay pride parade today.
Gay activists who attempted to lay flowers near the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier outside the Kremlin wall were heckled & assaulted by skinheads, Orthodox Christians, & radical nationalists.
Police arrested around 120 people, both supporters & opponents of the parade. Gay activists were dragged away by riot police when they began to speak to reporters, yet opponents of the parade were allowed to speak & chant, " Moscow is not Sodom!"
Volker Beck, a member of the German Parliament from the Green Party was struck in the face by skinheads outside the city hall.
The city had banned the gay pride parade on the grounds that it was contradictive to the values of most residents & therefore presented a threat of violence.
Homophobic Mayor Yuri Luzhkov said gay parades, " may be acceptable for some kind of progressive, in some sense, countries in the West, but it is absolutley unacceptable for Moscow, for Russia. As long as I am Mayor, we will not permit these parades to be conducted."
Police stood by as skinheads crowded around Beck & Scott Long of the U.S. based Human Rights Watch, who unfurled a rainbow flag. Long said, " The police were encouraging the skinheads. It was disturbing but not suprising. Luzhkov spent months encouraging violence by his homophobia."
This makes me so fucking sick! How can a mayor of a city, ANY city, promote this kind of violence? And the fact that Orthodox Christians were side by side with skinheads to violently beat back gays & lesbians for wanting to lay flowers on a tomb, is just the most hypocritical juxtaposition ever! This just goes to prove we still have a long way to go before the world becomes tolerant of gays/lesbians everywhere.