"Let them speak": Russian talk show about homosexuality (English subtitles)

Uploaded by fromRUwithsubtitles on 05.12.2012

In Moscow, it's "Let them Speak," where we discuss true stories that have the whole world talking.
These pictures indirectly led to the firing of RIA News political observer Nikolay Troitsky.
Here's what Troitsky wrote on his blog, commenting on the pictures from Berlin Gay Pride parade:
I want to hope and believe that this kind of filth will never rear its head in Russia. I could do without that kind of "freedom" and "democracy."
No amount of toleration is enough - against your will, you think of some sort of powerful bomb that would only kill gays.
Honestly, if these perverted creatures would just die, the world would be a lot cleaner.
Now the former political commentator Nikolay Troitsky says the following about the reasons for his firing:
I made in entry in my personal LiveJournal blog which was brought about by the pictures from the event in Berlin.
This spectacle disgusted me, which is what I was writing about.
And I unthinkingly wrote about how, against your will, you think about a bomb that would destroy this filth.
The now unemployed journalist is certain that he was dealt with unfairly, and he doesn't understand why they
fired him, one of the best journalists from RIA News.
There it is, RIA News. I was fired from there because of an entry I wrote in my personal blog.
Today we'll talk about whether homophobic statements should be able to become a reason for firing and repression
of people responsible for them, and whether or not we're ready for the kind of "freedom" and "democracy" where
representatives of sexual minorities appear on the streets of Moscow just as they did in Berlin.
The former political observer Nikolay Troitsky is here today in our studio. Hello, good evening.
Tell me, when you wrote in your blog the phrase about a bomb that would destroy all gay people,
did you expect this kind of response?
No, I didn't expect it. I honestly didn't think it would interest anyone outside of a small circle,
especially since I quickly deleted the entry about the bomb.
But did you change your convictions, or what?
No, well, it was excessive. It was a metaphor, which I didn't ever think someone could take literally, even though
I never meant it in a literal sense, I don't want to kill anyone, and I've never in my life planned to do that.
Let everyone live...
Well, maybe you agree with Oleg Panteleev from the Federation Council, who offered to relocate all of them to the North.
He thinks all gays should live in the North. Or in Arkhangelskaya Oblast.
They banned all statements about homosexuality, period.
Why Arkhangelskaya Oblast? No, I just don't think that we should divide people based on their orientation, nationality, skin color, eye shape, whatever.
What difference does it make? The main thing is that there are decent people and then there are wild people that behave like wild animals.
Those people in the pictures - they may be completely normal, they're not even all necessarily gay. I mean, there can't be 700,000 gays.
It's just that they're wild people, and I don't like that kind of people.
(Anton): Nikolay, can I ask you a question? When you deleted your blog entry, what happened then? Did the boss call you up?
What was the firing procedure?
He was reported to the authorities, as I understand.
I was reported to the authorities, of course, but they didn't ask me about that -
One second, Sergey, who reported him to the authorities?
Well, as far as I know, some "vigilant" bloggers, as usual, wrote to the Party Committee. They read the quickly erased entry
in Nikolay's personal LiveJournal blog and immediately filed a complaint about him.
(Sarcastic guy): Well, for one thing, the entry itself was the report to the authorities, and secondly, why did you get so scared and delete everything?
I didn't get scared, I didn't delete everything, and not right away -
But you knew concretely that you did something wrong.
All people, in the heat of the moment, say things that are excessive.
I came to defend my friend Nikolay. I've been reading his blog for a long time, and there's a lot of crazy, hot-tempered stuff,
almost as if written by a drunk man.
Sure, it happens.
Usually Nikolay deletes those things, but it's absolutely normal to write things like that, because it's his personal blog space.
Do you think a journalist can be fired for his statements?
But this was a completely personal statement. - in a personal blog, I mean, in a personal blog.
He didn't say it in a magazine or anything. It was completely within his personal space.
Besides, in my own blog I don't talk about political questions, because I was a political observer.
(everyone talking at once)
So picture this situation, Nikolay. A personal says something in his kitchen. His colleagues record it and take it to the boss - can they fire him for that?
But it's the same situation, in essence. A statement in a blog is the same as a statement made over a smoke or a cup of coffee,
Politicians and famous journalists should be able to say whatever they want on LiveJournal, and if everyone starts to shut themselves up -
Wait, what did management tell you - well, how old are you?
How old?
So maybe they just wanted to free up a space for a younger journalist.
No, nothing of the source.
Tell me, when you started at RIA News, did you sign some sort of corporate ethics code?
Yeah, but there wasn't anything about blogs on it.
They said you, like, can't spread around information about the corporate character.
Let's ask the representative of the main editor of RIA how it all really happened. Valeriy Lefchecko, he's ready
to explain why the decision was made to get rid of Nikolay Troitsky.
Good evening.
Good day.
So please tell us what exactly happened.
Well, first of all, we regret this situation, because we didn't expect that this kind of situation would come up, and
Nikolay has worked with us since the end of 2009. He's an experienced journalist, political observer, and his work came out in Russian, English, and was
translated into other languages as well, and his writings were very popular among readers.
What's the situation that you didn't expect? The reaction of society and the fact that everyone in the world is talking about Troitsky's firing,
or that a journalist with such a background and such a professional could express such points of view on LiveJournal?
Well, we didn't expect such an outburst of emotion that Nikolay let out, and we really regret that, like I said, and our only option was -
Excuse me, can I ask you a question? Didn't you ever think to just agree with Nikolay, that if he apologized for going overboard,
why - even in the Soviet Union, when things like this happened, they agreed to cover it up right away.
Why are you putting this all out in the public and repressing him in front of everyone?
First of all, it wasn't about firing in the first place. It was about agreement on both sides. Both sides came to an agreement as the result of a dialogue.
The dialogue went like this: that these statements on the blog, because they could be spread around the whole internet,
and because on his blog Nikolay identified not as some kind of freelance blogger but as a political observer for RIA News,
that in doing this Nikolay violated at minimum two RIA standards. For one thing, you can't create situations that could compromise you as an RIA employee.
Secondly, the ethical - Wait a second. - The ethics code of RIA employees, which applies not only to journalists, but to all employees -
we have 2000 employees, many of them have their own blogs - and in the ethics code, one of the basic points says that
uncensored language is completely forbidden.
Insofar a person is a political observer, I mean, an educated person who is the face of RIA News, how could he even let himself
say such absolutely crazy things? Just in theory, it's awful.
(everyone talking at once)
Vladimir, tell me, as a professional, as a businessman, do think Troitsky's firing was just?
Well, I don't think it's about the firing, but about agreement of two different sides.
Nikolay, you agreed to be fired, right?
Well, it was better than making a big scene.
That's the first thing. Secondly, do you, as a professional, understand the difference between the printed word
and words said out loud? When people in conversations say things like "Go to hell!" it sounds a certain way.
When it's written, it's very concrete and very intentional. I just advise you to look at the written word in a somewhat different way.
So "shut up, hide yourself, and keep everything secret" then?
I just want to say once again that Nikolay wrote this on LiveJournal, not on the RIA News website. Nikolay said -
Sergey - Can I just ask a question - Sergey - But what if -
Shut up for a second - He said that, involuntarily, the thought comes into your head - So let's punish Pushkin, Gogol, and Dostoevsky then.
(Someone in the audience) Hitler also had such thoughts "involuntarily"!
Look, that's just the most idiotic thing you could possibly say. What does Hitler have to do with anything?
On one of the federal channels, once a week there's this show where men dress up as women and read ridiculous poems in women's clothing for an hour.
What if, for example, Troitsky wrote that he wanted to destroy all of those people? Would you fire him for that?
And would there be this same kind of scandal?
We'd be having the same conversation. Because, for us, it wasn't the context that was important, but the form of expression.
The words he used are just objectively extremist in character, they were a call to violence. And here we -
Aleksandr, why is this kind of context causing such a division in society? You lived in America, in New York. A week ago, they approved a law -
In New York, yes. I can say that, judging by the reaction of today's audience, Russia is just not ready for gay parades. (applause)
Calm down. That doesn't mean - that doesn't mean that it will never happen. It took America 40 years for it to happen. In 1969 - shut up! - in America
there were the so-called Stonewall riots. That was the first gay rights demonstration where they realized that they needed to defend their rights.
They were terribly persecuted - believe me, the police did raids, and when they saw two kissing men, they put them in the slammer.
That was in 1969! And since them, America has come an extraordinarily long way, and today in New York state they legalized same-sex marriage.
(Woman in audience): That's HORRIBLE!
Whether that's good or bad, it's inevitably going to come ro Russia too, we're going down the same road. It's coming. But right now we're not ready.
And, of course, Nikolay, who was too hot-tempered, is a good example of -
What are you talking about? They're people like us! They have the right to exist! They -
You're right! But Russia isn't ready for it!
(Woman in audience): Looking at these pictures, I see Sodom and Gomorrah. It's a city of sin! Look, we live in an Orthodox country!
Zhanna, can I ask you, if you were writing about what you're seeing right now on the screen, what would you recommend be done with these people?
You know, when there was Sodom and Gomorrah, God destroyed it.
In the Dulles Plan, which was about the destruction of the Russian people by the United States,
the first objective was: The total moral perversion of the Soviet people. Total moral perversion! (applause)
Excuse me, I love you, Zhanna, but there was never any "Dulles Plan" about the destruction of Russia.
That's just Soviet propaganda.
(Zhanna): You just aren't up to speed. You're uninformed.
After a short commercial break, we'll have on the show a person who thinks that firing Nikolay Troitsky was too light a punishment.
We'll have what he says after the break.
(On screen: If you have an interesting story, we're waiting for your call)
On the air, "Let them Speak."
These pictures indirectly led to the firing of RIA News political observer Nikolay Troitsky.
Here's what Troitsky wrote on his blog, commenting on the pictures from Berlin Gay Pride parade:
I want to hope and believe that this kind of filth will never rear its head in Russia. I could do without that kind of "freedom" and "democracy."
No amount of toleration is enough - against your will, you think of some sort of powerful bomb that could kill only gays.
Honestly, if these perverted creatures would just die, the world would be a lot cleaner.
During the break, we were joined by a guest from St. Petersburg, Igor Kochetkov, chairman of the Russian LGBT Network. Good evening.
Tell us what you think about what happened with Troitsky at RIA News.
So I've heard more than once in the past few days about how the bomb is a "metaphor." That's not true.
It's not a metaphor. A bomb designed to kill only gays exists already. Not long ago, in May of this year in Astrakhan,
a group of terrorists was arrested that, before this, planned an explosion in Volgograd.
And in Astrakhan it was confirmed that they planned an explosion in a local gay night club. They decided to blow up
this club after they saw two men kissing near the club. It bothered them so much, just like Nikolay, just like with the pictures from Berlin, and they -
(Woman in audience): They were right! We see them in stores, and we don't ATTACK them, but excuse me, when I'm
sitting in public transport and I see two men kissing and I'm with my grandson, and what kind of an example is that for him?
And he'll ask, "Mom" - I mean, "Grandma, why are they kissing?" And what am I supposed to answer to that?! It's disgusting!
We're not against them, for God's sake, let them exist, but we don't want it to be in our faces, on display, it's disgusting! (applause)
They wanted to BLOW UP this club just because they saw two men kissing!
(Sergey): The situation with the terrorist attack is, of course, tragic, but it surprises me how the "champions of tolerance"
are the ones who behave the most aggressively in our society. (Applause) And this whole thing with Nikolay Troitsky is just a confirmation of that.
(Andrey): It just seems to me that if someone in Russia at his work found out that their coworker was gay, that person would be fired,
but if someone were fired for NOT being gay, people would be saying, "Hey, this is the 21st century." (applause/laughter)
Why do gays want to march up and down the main streets of Moscow and St. Petersburg?
Why can't they get together and do that in the forests of the North or something? (applause)
Why do they want to do it in busy public areas?
Tell me, please, why can everyone else march up and down the streets in the cities and we can't? Why does someone else get to decide for us?
Why can't we get married? Why can't we talk about our sexual orientation? Why can't we LIVE?
(Zhanna): Because it's immoral, because it's immoral! You were raised in the Soviet Union under completely different moral standards!
And we were a moral people!
(Sarcastic guy): Half of the country was sitting in the gulags, sweetie, and you say that was moral? My dear, half of the country was in the gulags!
(everyone speaking at once)
(Sarcastic guy): What are you talking about, "comrade", calm down, "comrade" -
(Zhanna): If someone sees this kind of filth, he'll get nauseous, he'll have a natural reaction of disgust about all of this, do you all agree with me?! (applause)
(Igor): The woman in the audience asked two questions. What should you tell your grandson when he asks why two men are kissing?
Yeah, how am I supposed to answer? I have two grandsons, I want to be a great-grandmother, I want to see my great-grandsons -
(Igor): Look, I'm trying to answer your question. Tell your grandson that they're kissing because they love each other!
(gasping and etc. from the audience)
(Igor): When two people love each other, sometimes they kiss.
(Woman in audience): And what's going to happen to the family then? Who's going to give birth, who's going to give birth?!
(Andrey): Who's going to give birth? Answer the woman's question.
(Igor): You're uninformed about - (Zhanna): It's not love, it's a sin! It's a horrible sin that should be punished!
Let's invite into our studio the well-known political scientist Aleksandr Tsypko. What point of view will he express?
Good evening. Tell us your opinion, is Troitsky's firing a victory for sexual minorities or an expression of 21st-century tolerance?
Well, first of all, I'll say that these gay parades make me feel the same way as Nikolay Troitsky. (applause)
This morning I was reading the New Testament, Paul's Epistle to the Romans. This is all just really an expression of a shameful -
(Sarcastic guy): What, so he was writing about gay parades?
(Tsypko) No, he was writing about a shameful act. But here's the difference between my position and Nikolay's position.
This brings me to a feeling of sympathy, of pity, and not aggression. Your aggression is really bad and dangerous, because - (applause)
(Andrey): So, if I understand you correctly, when you see these pictures, you feel sorry for these people?
Yes, to feel sorry for them, like the way you feel sorry for unhappy people. And they're not guilty, this is a problem of modern European civilization -
(Zhanna): They ARE guilty because sin comes from passion! Sin comes -
(Tsypko): Don't interrupt me! I didn't interrupt you or scream over you! This is a problem of civilization, right?
We have to respect human rights and never allow discrimination based on gender, nationality, whatever -
but we cannot promote unnatural behavior! (applause)
Besides human rights, there are the rights of humankind, and those have to do with the preservation of the human race! (applause)
(Someone in audience): That's right!!
And it relies on the preservation of the family, on the preservation of holy things.
For God's sake, stop talking about gay parades. Don't do it! These are unhappy people!
Give them the opportunity to socialize, give them the opportunity to work, don't touch them, have sympathy for them, think of them as equals, but
don't turn an anomaly into a parade. It's killing mankind! There are some basic values - I repeat, the rights of humankind,
the preservation of morals, the preservation of our basic values, what do they rest on? We're delicate, you can easily destroy the human race -
(Sergey): No one wants for fags to be marching down the center of Moscow! (applause)
(Tsypko): Let me finish. On the other hand, we need to balance this aggression, our absence of tolerance, inability to respect each other.
Igor, are you offended? Hurt?
Um, I think that I, as a representative of the gay community, face from time to time violations of my rights.
I think it's a violation of my rights when I have to ask permission to walk around somewhere in the middle of St. Petersburg or somewhere on the edge of the city.
(Someone in audience): They aren't decently dressed!
(Igor): I'm dressed decently right now, what are you complaining about?
(Sergey): You know what I don't like, I don't like -
(Olga Kryshtanovskaya): You know, I just think our society is deeply ill.
Before, homosexuality was the exception. And now we're seeing that homosexuality is spreading all over the world.
Everywhere, not just in Russia. And how are we supposed to deal with that? On one hand, Aleksandr Tsypko is absolutely right,
that the basis of the family is being destroyed. Here in Russia, there are 10 million fewer men than women,
and if part of them goes over to homosexuality, - it's propaganda- it's a problem, BUT,
but there is also another problem, OK? We're for the preservation of family values. But then what about democracy and tolerance?
Our society also needs tolerance. We're so hostile.
(Andrey): Do you agree with what this woman here was saying? Here, we see in this photo a little girl at the Berlin pride parade.
Do you think that such a parade can change someone's sexual orientation?
(Olga): Yes, it can. When people feel some kind of, I don't know, some urge to sin, that's one thing, and I often feel that urge, and-
Now another short commercial break - after the break, a participant of the gay parade in Berlin who went onto the streets of the German capital with a Russian flag.
All the details after the break.
(If you have an interesting story, we're waiting for your call)
("These photos indirectly led to the firing of journalist Nikolay Troitsky...")
Troitsky's statements have become an international scandal.
Right now we have live on the air from Hamburg Ivan Kilber, one of the participants of the gay parade in Germany who
carried on the streets of Berlin a Russian flag. Good evening.
(Ivan) Good evening.
Did you know that the comments in Nikolay Troitsky's blog let to him being fired?
Yes, of course, I've been following that. I was one of the organizers of the group of Russian group in the Berlin pride parade.
We went around with posters against homophobic violence in Russia, and I was really surprised hearing calls to violence
right after the parade. I've been listening to your discussion, and it just seems really strange to me that everyone is so afraid of the parade participants.
I mean, it's the same kind of crazy people you can see on Maslenitsa (Russian holiday) or at Russian weddings-
I just don't get what exactly people are so afraid of. (laughter)
What kind of low self-esteem do you have to have to get so afraid of a guy in a dress? It's just a carnival - (applause)
The parade consists of two parts: the human rights defenders, who go and protest against murders, executions, hangings of gays in Iran.
Against unlawful restrictions, against firings. There's a group of LGBT parents. A father holds a sign, "My daughter is a lesbian and I'm not ashamed of her."
A mother holds a sign that says, "My son is gay and I love him."
Ivan, tell me, please, if it's not a secret, what is your job in Germany?
I'm a designer.
If you wrote something like what Nikolay Troitsky wrote in Germany, what would happen with you? Would they fire you?
First of all, I want to say that the political observer Troitsky gave a link to his workplace on his LiveJournal, right?
And he blatantly associated himself with his workplace. So I absolutely welcome the decision of RIA.
It's practically the first time someone in Russia has been punished for inciting homophobic violence.
If I wrote something like that in German, it doesn't matter about what, whether it was homophobic, anti-Semitic, racist, they're all in the same category,
I think there would be consequences. And I see around me that these firings are happening constantly.
(Sergey): Ivan, tell me, is the involvement of children in these "parades" normal? When small children see two gay people,
when they get dragged into this bare-assed crowd of people, when some girl announces that she's proud she became a lesbian,
you think that's all just great, don't you?
You know, I was born in the Soviet Union, where everyone said there was no sex and there was no information, no information about
homosexual relations - since childhood I've felt this way, just like every child feels love or whatever. There's no such thing
as homosexual or heterosexual propaganda. Sexuality works in a different way than that.
From what I can see, a gay parade is like an uprising against shame, to erase shame, to get rid of shame!
Does it seem to you, an allegedly civilized, educated European person, that we need shame, or should shame die?
I think you have in your head the picture with that naked guy that has troubled you so much. Tsypko: Of course, naturally.
Well, if it troubles you so much, why not adopt a ban and according to the ban arrest everyone regardless of orientation,
naked soldiers, naked border guards, a naked girl at her graduation-night dance-
Tsypko: You're twisting my words! I'm against violence. I'm trying to urge you to have the moral feeling of shame! You're twisting my words!
Ivan: I'm not talking about violence, I'm talking about the naked human body.
Sarcastic guy: He's urging you to be moral, pal, you're the one twisting words. Tsypko: ... and this is just a great example of
how these people are cunning, you're twisting my words! I'm not talking about arrests! I'm talking about moral perversion.
Sarcastic guy: Comrade!
(Nikolay): Wait, I don't aspire to the absolute truth, I just said my personal opinion and that's all, I know there are
many other opinions.
(Someone): Hitler had a personal opinion too, and then it became the opinion of the whole country!
(Andrey): I understand what you're saying, because before the deletion of a certain article, homosexuality was illegal, and now-
I was talking about the picture. If someone is gay, that's his own personal fate.
(Sarcastic guy): If you don't want it, then don't look at it.
(Tsypko): I'm talking about something else - about the imposition of your homosexuality on other people, attempting to
put homosexuality alongside the norm. For God's sake, I'm not at all encroaching on other people's rights,
I'm talking about how unnatural it is to put on display things that are contrary to the norm, and the desire to
impose those unnormal things on other people. (applause)
You know, I would like to say that some professions require higher ethical standards of those who choose to work in those professions.
No one's going to argue with me that it's absolutely necessary for a doctor to be on a high ethical level. It's the same for journalists.
A journalist can be by day a wonderful, objective analyst and by night be an extremist. He just can't be. And that's
a unique characteristic of the profession of journalism.
(Andrey): So should we have shame or not? A feminist, Evgeniya Otto, is here to discuss it. Let's welcome her.
Hello. If you were in the place of the head of RIA News, what would you do with Nikolay Troitsky?
I would never be in his place, first of all. I think there should be an association of independent journalists like
me, like my respected colleague, who would get together themselves and discuss questions about work conditions and so forth,
I think (Sergey): Lady, look- lady, -
(Evgeniya): Okay, I get that you're used to interrupting people, but make an exception for me, huh?
(Andrey): Do you agree with what Aleks Tsypko says that we shouldn't have gay parades in Russia because we're
erasing the concept of shame? (Zhanna): It's violence to humankind!
(Evgeniya): Well no, of course I don't agree with him. I have my own complaints about these parades.
My friends in Europe go to the parades with the slogan "pride, not profit", which means that a parade should really be
about fighting for your rights, but in Europe, they've already accomplished a lot,
they invest a lot into the parades and they start to just buy expensive clothes and stuff, just look at how they're dressed -
Excuse me, I guess, I see a skeptical reaction -
(Andrey): So you're saying it's like a business event where people just buy up spaces and make money off them?
(Evgeniya): I have this complaint with the parades - (Guy with mic): So it's like a discotheque out in the streets.
(Evgeniya): I think that parades are become more about capitalism and less about protesting.
I would like to continue the thought of "putting it on display," because a lot of people have complained that we're doing that,
That's right, we're putting it on display. We're putting on display the problem of human rights violations in Russia,
We're putting on display the problem of violence and cruelty, which are, unfortuately, commonplace in Russia.
Not long ago the Levada Center conducted a survey, according to which 4 percent of the adult population of Russia
thinks that gays and lesbians should be destroyed. Four percent think they should be killed! (applause)
(Andrey): What are you applauding about? Applause in favor of destroying them or are you all part of the 4 percent or what?
(Zhanna): There should be a special place, a special place where can they live together, separate from society!
(Igor): Four or five percent, so that means that four or five percent are potential murderers.
And while that kind of a situation exists, we're going to go out into the streets, we're going to protest.
(Andrey): Are there such incidents of violence in Europe too, regardless of the fact that there are parades and a community?
We heard a really big story a few months ago about how an American college student killed himself because people were making fun of him.
In Europe, people are ashamed of those incidents!
Ivan, are there incidents of murders because of orientation?
Of course, and even more well-known is the suicide problem. According to most statistics, the risk of suicide among homosexual adolescents
is several times higher because they live and grow up in an atmosphere of hate, not feeling the support of their parents
or society or their classmates or their teachers, and this is our children. This is our brothers and sisters.
Those women in the audience who are screaming like maniacs, this could be their nephews, I don't know.
(Andrey): Okay, well, if you were riding in the bus and your grandson said, "Grandma, I'm gay."?
Oy! Andrey, what's wrong with you? That would just be such a tragedy in our family! I just can't even describe it with words.
Every person has the right to self-expression! There's no need to put it on display, but -
(Andrey): So you would support your granddaughter if she said she was gay?
Yes, I would help her, I would help her adapt, I would help her psychologically, I just think it's natural.
It's not natural, it's a fashion statement.
(Andrey): Okay, what would you do if your son or daughter said they were not straight?
Oh my God, it's just not normal.
(Andrey): But what would you do? Would you chase her out, kill her?
I think these people should go to the psychologist and figure it out, where it comes from.
(Andrey): Well, I'm just asking because on one of the most controversial programs that my American colleague Oprah Winfrey made
the whole country discussed the topic for three days on end. She brought into the studio 5 families who claimed they "prayed away" homosexuality.
That they went to church for 15 years and changed their sexual orientation.
Evgeniya, I see you're laughing about that.
(Zhanna): Andrey, Andrey, wait a second, can I say something? Did you ever think about the majority of people,
who find this disgusting? Did you think about that? And also, you really can pray it away! Why has God punished Russia?
Because people stopped believing! They lost their beliefs! (Sarcastic guy): The Bolsheviks believed too, they believed in what they were doing.
(Andrey): Zhanna, do you believe you can pray it away?
Of course! Any sinner can pray it away.
(Aleksandr): One second, Andrey, can I say something? I've said many times that when a child really has some sort of genetic, biological predispositions,
You can't fight that. But, the worst thing that is happening in the gay community is that, really,
they're dragging in other children. That's the scariest thing. I can say, as a person who worked in the art field in America,
that there are spheres that you can't even get into if you're not gay. (Zhanna): That's right!
Look at the very talented guy in front of us on the screen, Ivan, I don't know, he's probably a great designer,
and as a rule, gay people are very talented, and if we remember the dozens of names- Tchaikovsky, Oscar Wilde, etc, hundreds of names-
(Ivan): Excuse me, you're derailing the conversation.
(Aleksandr): It's not derailing, it's these very talented people pulling in other people to the gay community.
I've thought of this kind of comparison: gay is somewhere between a prodigy and a vampire. I wrote a whole essay on this.
Being a prodigy is the best human disposition, and being a vampire is the absolute worst disposition.
(Andrey): Ivan, do you think that gays drag people of traditional orientations into their lifestyle?
(Ivan): First of all, I want to say something very important: Homosexuality is not a disease. Homosexuality is a sexual orientation, a variation of the norm.
(audience yells)
Secondly, gays are not better or worse or more talented than their homosexual counterparts. There are gay plumbers,
gay street cleaners, bus driver, designers, and so on. And no one is dragging anyone in. Excuse me, my whole life
beautiful girls have been trying to get their hands on me. (Aleksandr): Haha, they're trying for nothing.
(Tsypko): You said a horrible thing about suicides among homosexuals, it's really awful, but answer this question,
before, when there was no homosexual culture, were there less of these suicides? I just have a feeling, and maybe I'm not right, that it's the opposite effect.
(Anton): Think about the statistics of the Soviet Union before saying something like that. The number of gay and lesbian suicides
in Russia has fallen by 10 times since then. By 10 times! Just because they got rid of the article that said it was illegal,
just because society, like these women here in the audience, stopped constantly yelling "How awful, how awful, how awful!"
(Zhanna): You're insulting those women! (Anton): They've been insulting people their whole lives!
(Andrey): Ivan, thanks so much for being with us.
Thank you, goodbye.
Next up on our program: a person who found his own method of fighting for morality and purity in society. After our commercial break, you'll see him for the first time.
(If you have interesting stories...)
On Air, "Let them speak," today's show is called "Three Merry Little Letters,"
Now I'd like to invite into the studio a person who's found his own
method of fighting for purity and morality in our society. The head of Union of Orthodox Icon-Bearers,
an active participant in the crackdown on gay parades in Moscow, Leonid Simonovich-Niksich.
In the name of the Father, and the Son, and the Holy Ghost... (Zhanna): Amen!
Homosexuality in Russia is - (Anton): Is Yury Kuklachev gonna be here too?
(Leonid): No, he's never coming. (Zhanna): If you're going to be catty-
(Leonid): All gay parades there will ever be... (Sarcastic guy): Santa Claus, then?
Normal Russian Orthodox people will never allow any gay parades in Russia. (applause)
Tell me, I think Nikolay Troitsky should become the head of your organization after his firing.
(Anton): Yeah, I know you guys have a great newspaper, you can name him editor-in-chief. You usually do
photo-exposes with little kittens and puppies. (Sarcastic guy): You could even make him a saint!
(Leonid): Nikolay Troitsky must be returned to his position right away, because he didn't make any mistake,
from the point of view of democracy, and I consider our society right now a democracy.
He metaphorically expressed his feelings, in a metaphorical way, and that's acceptable for journalists.
(Igor): Tell me, when you beat people on the streets, are you also metaphorically expressing your feelings?
(Leonid): First of all, we don't beat anyone in the streets. (Igor): There are pictures of it, don't lie.
(Leonid): Those pictures weren't of us.
Tell me, why do you chase away the gay people every time they announce a parade in Moscow?
Because, first of all, in Russia there is a demographic crisis. The population is declining by a million people per year.
(Sarcastic guy): You keep giving birth and giving birth - (Leonid): And we're going to keep giving birth.
(Sarcastic guy): Comrade, go ahead and give birth! (Leonid): We need to have strong families, healthy children
(Leonid): God destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah because there was so much sin there, the sin of homosexuality.
(Anton): Is there any woman of child-bearing age in the audience who would ever agree to give birth to this man's children? I'm curious.
(Zhanna): EVERYONE would agree! EVERYONE would agree!
(Zhanna): Because he would give birth to normal children!
(Leonid): Like any Russian Orthodox person, I have the right to fight for a healthy family and healthy children!
And so, anyway, there are pictures of the suppression of the parade...
Right now we're seeing pictures from the breakup of the parade in Moscow. If you found out that an RIA News employee
in his free time went to chase away sexual minorities, would he also be fired?
Here's another question about a person's ethical position.
A person should, of course, carry responsibility for the things he does.
It's not important if it's during work or during free time. Look, we live in a global world.
Time zones, 24 hours, the world is round. How can I say that I'm not a journalist when I sleep, and when
I wake up I'm a journalist? And our audience? (Sergey): That's a totalitarian position from a supposedly liberal news agency!
When we're sleep, they're reading us. (Tsypko): I agree, he did a bad thing. But I -
(everyone talking at once)
(Tsypko): But the guy apologized. I listened to what he said. He said he respects the right to have your own personality,
and he really regrets what he did. Can you really not return him to his job
if he publicly, in front of everyone, said that he regretted it? That's what I think.
(Tsypko): I don't think you're being sincere.
(Valeriy): Here's what we're talking about: we've come to a two-sided agreement and Nikolay left not because he was fired,
but because he agreed. And it's disingenuous to say we told him to leave and never come back.
(Sergey): That's such hypocrisy. You made him leave.
(Andrey): Nikolay, tell me, are you working right now or are you looking for work?
(Nikolay): I'm unemployed. (Vladimir): And are you receiving unemployment benefits?
(Nikolay): Well, it... (Andrey): Alexandr Sergeevich, we get it already, let's listen to Nikolay.
You're unemployed right now? (Nikolay): Right now, yes, I'm unemployed.
(Andrey): So you're open for job offers. (Nikolay): I'm looking for a new job.
(Evgeniya): I'm a journalist, and really, this is an unprecedented case where the news agency turned out
to be more progressive than its employees. Usually the arrangement that you're a journalist forever works in the opposite direction -
I mean, I don't even know what I'll have to put up with at work because I'm here right now.
So I'm also against the idea of the administration of the agency imposed itself so much. I think questions like this
should be decided collectively. Because the question of homophobia also needs to be explained to people.
I understand that this guy is from a different generation. First of all, he was raised in the Soviet Union with homophobia,
now he lives in an atmosphere of homosexuality. And he's acting like a victim because homophobia is always being propagandized to him.
(Aleksandr): I want to bring up another example. We had other role models - (Sergey): When you're reading something in someone's
blog, you should use common sense and see the whole context- societal opinion, the personal position of the author,
(Evgeniya): Couldn't you please let someone else speak? So I think that employees should have gotten together and
explained to this guy why homophobia is bad, to decide on their own whether they want such a person in their organization or not.
There would probably be gays in the organization, they could say their own position.
(Valeriy): That's exactly how it is, though. A collective of journalists is a collective of colleagues. And each journalist,
when he gets hired, signs a document about joining that collective, (Evgeniya): I think that kind of document should be boss.
(Valeriy): Journalists are obligated to - (Sergey): You've just decided to puff yourself up in front of European public opinion! (applause)
(Sergey): To show them, oh, look, we're politically correct.
(Anton): Tell me, please, I know you agree with Nikolay's article. If the Russian government didn't punish you
for the murder of homosexuals, would you kill them?
(Leonid): No. (Anton): But you completely agree with their opinion. I saw how you took knives to copies of that gay newspaper.
(Leonid): Symbolically. Demons must be chased away. When we carry the cross -
(Andrey): Maybe you should show these people places where they can pray it away, icons, chapels. Maybe that's what you should be doing. (applause)
(Andrey): And not chasing them away.
(Leonid): I'll answer your question. The thing is that the West has completely rotted away lately and they want to do the same to us.
(Leonid): We won't let them do that. Look, I want to show you this. You know, of course, this man: it's Elton John.
Elton John recently adopted a sin and he - (Andrey): Gave birth to him! Gave birth to him!
(Leonid): Right, gave birth, how the hell could he give birth if his so-called "husband" ... so anyway, he took him,
and he'll make out of his son, excuse me for the expression, a faggot, just like him. (applause)
(Andrey): Well, here we are talking about toleration and you're using prohibited words.
(Leonid): I said I was sorry. The Queen of England knighted him. Knights were always pure people.
(Leonid): He's a symbol of homosexuality. We're icon-bearers, we always deal with these things like this. (tears apart the picture). We've always dealt with them this way.
(Leonid): We've always done that with such "knights," and we'll never allow you to have gay parades in Russia.
(Aleksandr): My Lord, doesn't it seem to you that you're resorting to extremism?
(Andrey): Maybe we really need to be like the American army - "Don't ask, don't tell." Everyone knows it's there
but everyone lives quietly and doesn't touch anyone.
Yes, you know, I would like to start with the fact that homosexuals are also created by God, if we're all created by God.
That's the first thing. And we should respect them. (Leonid): Homosexuals were created by the Devil!
And when it comes down to it, what people do behind closed doors with the light off is their own business.
(Leonid): And what if they go out into the streets? (Olga): But when they go out and propagandize,
(Olga): it becomes a social problem and not a personal one.
(Zhanna): People are born without sin. He's born with only one sin - the original sin of Adam and Eve. Without sins. Do you get it? And then all of this.
(Evgeniya): I'm myself a former homophobe, I'm ashamed to admit it, I made sense of this question thanks to
making an attempt to understand the problem. From a scientific point of view, homosexuality is a genetic trait, so
it doesn't make sense to talk about homosexual propaganda. So no one can become homosexual
just because his parents are homosexuals or because he saw a parade.
(Igor): I would like to take up the idea of "shame" that Mr. Tsypko raised. It's shameful to be ignorant. It's a shame
to hate someone just because you don't know him. (Zhanna): It's shameful to be promiscuous!
(Igor): So everything I've heard here - (Sergey): It's shameful to turn in people to the authorities.
(Igor): It makes me feel ashamed of the ignorance of our society. When the LGBT community tries to get rid
of that ignorance even a little bit, they close our mouths. (Zhanna): God covered up the genitals!
(Igor): In Arkhangelskaya Oblast they adopted a law to ban so called "homosexual propaganda" (Zhanna): God covered up the genitals
(Igor): Any mention of homosexuality in Arkhangelskaya Oblast is now considered a crime! (Zhanna): When God chased Adam and Eve out of paradise,
(Zhanna): God covered up the genitals and now you want to uncover them. You have gone against God.
(Andrey): But that's just in Arkhangelskaya Oblast, I bet they haven't turned off their TVs.
They're watching right now. I hope that Nikolay Troitsky, as a talented journalist, finds work outside of the walls
of information agencies. I'd like to thank RIA News for being so transparent about their position, that they came
and discussed this case on our program.
Take care of yourselves and your loved ones -- goodbye.