Target: Daria Wilke
Goal: Applaud Russian author Daria Wilke for publicly supporting the gay community in a country where public support is illegal
Russian president Vladimir Putin has been signing new laws revoking the rights of gay people in his country. One law forbids gay people from adopting children and another law makes gay ‘propaganda’ illegal. It also became illegal to discuss LGBT issues with minors, which goes along with the propaganda law.
Daria Wilke, a Russian author, just published a book called The Jester’s Cap, which includes a gay character. The book focuses on a fourteen year old boy who works in puppet theater with his gay friend. The friend leaves Russia in the book because of the harsh anti-gay attitudes in Russia. This book was inspired by Wilke’s own life because she worked in a theater with many gay people when she was younger.
The book also discusses gender roles. The main character struggles with being less manly and more emotional than the other men in his life. The people in his life try and push him to become more macho, but that is not who he is. The book tells a great story of what many adolescents go through when dealing with their sexual orientation and gender identity.
The reaction in Russia to Wilke’s book has been mixed. Some people have had a positive reaction and been in support of the book, while other more conservative people have reacted negatively. Wilke was very courageous to publish this book in such an anti-gay country. Commend her for her bravery by signing the petition below.
Dear Daria Wilke,
Russia is a country that does not accept homosexuality. President Putin has passed restrictive legislation for gay people recently, and one of the laws he passed prohibits adults from discussing LGBT issues with minors. This makes it difficult for children to ever learn about homosexuality and see it as a natural thing.
You published a book that has a gay character in it, called The Jester’s Cap. A large majority of the Russian population is very turned off by this book, but many people will see that this book is needed. There needs to be social change in Russia because right now President Putin is forcing the country to regress by taking away people’s rights.
This book will give children a way to see that being gay is just as natural as being straight and it is no big deal. It is important that children see this because many struggle with gender identity and sexual orientation. Russia teaches children that it is not okay to be gay, so they could grow up feeling ashamed of themselves. Your book teaches them that there is no shame in being gay.
[Your Name Here]
photo credit: 757Live via flickr