“Legislation that comes up later this month for first vote, which is being pushed by the Kremlin and the Russian Orthodox Church, would make it illegal nationwide to provide minors with information that is defined as ‘propaganda of sodomy, lesbianism, bisexuality and transgenderism.’ It includes a ban on holding public events that promote gay rights. St. Petersburg and a number of other Russian cities already have similar laws on their books.
The bill is part of an effort to promote traditional Russian values as opposed to Western liberalism, which the Kremlin and church see as corrupting Russian youth and by extension contributing to a wave of protest against President Vladimir Putin's rule. ... Denis Volkov, a sociologist with the Levada Center, an independent pollster, says the anti-gay bill fits the ‘general logic’ of a government intent on limiting various rights. But in this case, the move has been met mostly with either indifference or open enthusiasm by average Russians. Levada polls conducted last year show that almost two thirds of Russians find homosexuality ‘morally unacceptable and worth condemning.’ About half are against gay rallies and sameSex marriage; almost a third think homosexuality is the result of ‘a sickness or a psychological trauma,’ the Levada surveys show.”
(“Russia to Enact Anti-gay Law Nationwide,” AP, Jan. 21, 2013)