Russian Actor Begs Putin to Fully Criminalize LGBT People
The Russian sitcom actor who recently advocated incinerating gay people in ovens just asked President Vladimir Putin to double down on the Kremlin's state-sponsored homophobia.
Last summer Russia's parliament unanimously approved — and Putin signed into law — a nationwide ban on "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations" in venues accessible to minors, essentially criminalizing any positive depiction or discussion of LGBT identities. But that's not anti-LGBT enough for Ivan Okhlobystin, the star of a popular Russian sitcom loosely based on the American medical comedy Scrubs.
In an open letter to Putin ultimately published on Russia's Facebook-equivalent social networking site, VKontakte, Okhlobystin said the so-called gay propaganda ban didn't go far enough "because the existence of officially registered societies of homosexuals is by itself a direct advertisement of homosexuality," reports the Moscow Times.
Okhlobystin, a defrocked Orthodox priest, asked the Russian president to reinstate a Soviet-era law that made same-sex sexual relations punishable by imprisonment, notes the Times.
Okhlobystin made headlines late last year when he told a studio audience that he wanted to burn gay people alive in ovens because they were a danger to his children. His argument that gay Russians should be stripped of the right to vote received overwhelming applause from the audience, according to multiple reports.