Target: President Putin
Goal: Don’t arrest Russian citizens and deport foreigners who “promote homosexuality.”
Russia is taking its anti-gay legislation, which currently includes a ban on gay parades, to a whole other level. Currently, they are debating a law that will make it illegal for any type of “gay propaganda” within the country. Russian citizens will be fined up to £20,000 while foreigners may face immediate deportation.
This legislation comes at a time when Russia is already in the spotlight over their protection of gay citizens. Within the past month, there has been two separate cases of brutal hate crime murders. Moscow has officially banned gay parades and despite his insistence that there is equality in his country, President Putin publicly declared that he would sign any legislature making same sex adoption illegal.
However, the current legislation being discussed does not just affect Russians – it affects anyone who may visit the country. Any foreigner accused of promoting “gay propaganda” can face arrest and immediate deportation, while Russian citizens will be facing fines of up to £20,000.
To make matters worse, the bill leaves the definition of “gay propaganda” open to interpretation, meaning things like safe sex advice or dressing a certain way could be seen as illegal in the future. With a government full of those who believe homosexuality can be treated, this law will be extremely dangerous to all members of the LGBTQ community and supporters, regardless of whether they are citizens of Russian or just visitors.
There is little time to act, as the bill is currently in its second reading, after passing 390 to 1 earlier this year. It is critical to act now, before time runs out.
Dear President Putin,
Please stop the legislation banning “gay propaganda” within Russia. Coming from a country that you say believes in equality, this is a very unjust law and one that should not be passed.
If you truly believe in equality, as you say you do, you will stop this law from passing. Legislature like this only encourages hate crime, such as the two very violent deaths of innocent men in the past month.
Furthermore, this bill has the potential to harm the tourist industry of Russia, as any individual is put at risk. The bill does not clearly state what “gay propaganda” is and many tourists to your country may face arrest and persecution for acts they may not find scandalous.
All citizens are equal and the law should treat them as such. Gay tourists and citizens deserve as much protection and safety as anyone else. Please use your voice as President to prevent this law from passing. The world is watching.
[Your Name Here]
Photo Credit – Wikimedia Commons