RUSSIA: St. Petersburg's Anti-Gay Bill To Be Considered On November 30th
As anti-gay laws continue to fester across Russia, activists in St. Petersburg report that a vote on the local "Don't Say Gay" bill has been postponed until November 30th. Via the petition site All Out:
Political leaders in St. Petersburg are about to vote on law that will make it illegal for any person to write a book, publish an article or speak in public about being gay, lesbian or transgender. The ruling party led by President Medvedev and Prime Minister Putin could make millions of people invisible with the stroke of a pen. Human rights defenders around the country are doing everything they can to stop it. They are risking their freedom to organize flashmobs and protests, but they are afraid that it won't be enough.VIDEO: Russia Today delivers a sympathetic report.
RELATED: The U.S. has denounced the bill. Go Hillary!
"Gay rights are human rights and human rights are gay rights," the State Department said, repeating a declaration by top US diplomat Hillary Clinton. "We have called on Russian officials to safeguard these freedoms, and to foster an environment which promotes respect for the rights of all citizens." In its statement, the State Department said it was "deeply concerned" by the bill proposed by the United Russia faction. The text passed in its first reading last week in the city's parliament and would need to pass in two further readings to become law. Under the bill, anyone who committed "public acts" promoting homosexuality, bisexuality or transgender identity to minors could pay up to 3,000 rubles ($97.50), while an organization could pay 10,000 to 50,000 rubles.