Saturday, February 25, 2012

Say Gay No More: Censorship in Saint Petersburg

As a group, we naturally have different tastes in religion, politics, and human morals. There's undoubtedly people in our class that feel that homosexuality is something that is against the will of God and man. But I think we could all agree, regardless of this orientation, nobody has the right to silence another human being -- especially about what they consensually do in their personal lives.

The petition was what enlightened me to the idea, and I by no means am asking one to sign it -- it was just where I got the information from. I feel that they express their concerns adequately, and not even from a point of view that's trying to justify homosexuality:

"Conservatives in St. Petersburg intent on passing this 'gay gag rule' believe they can casually dismiss calls from world leaders - and even the country's own international treaty obligations respecting freedom of expression. But at the same time, Russian leaders recently announced that they want to invest $11 billion dollars to build their international reputation and attract tourists from around the world. St. Petersburg, Russia's cosmopolitan "window to the west" is key to that strategy.

But they can't have it both ways - a thriving tourist economy can’t coexist with a new law that will muzzle artists, writers, musicians and regular citizens who live in - or visit - the city."

I couldn't agree more. Shouldn't a country attempting to become progressive and grand act as such? Where is this archaic desire for wrong censorship coming from?

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