Holland--the grandson of gay playwright and poet Oscar
Wilde--called for Russian president Vladimir
Putin on Monday to protect the rights of gay men and
lesbians in the country and make sure their issues are dealt
with fairly by the media during gay pride in May,
Agence France-Presse reported.
Holland is particularly angry over a Moscow TV
station running an "overtly homophobic" report. It
"quite clearly intended to convince the Russian public
that homosexuality is the affliction of a depraved and
decadent minority in Western Europe," Holland wrote in
the letter, a copy of which was obtained by the news agency.
In addition, Holland said that Moscow mayor
Yury Luzhkov had "publicly declared that he would ban
peaceful demonstrations by sexual minorities, an act
which would contravene both the Russian constitution
and the European Convention on Human Rights."
Holland wrote to Putin, "Your country in the
past has produced great works of art and literature
and music, some of it indeed by those whose nature,
like Tchaikovsky, was homosexual. It is nothing of which to
be ashamed; it is not decadent and depraved."
Holland said that although he is not gay,
he is going to Moscow to support the first
International Day Against Homophobia conference, to be
held in the city this May at the same time as the gay pride
march, Agence France-Presse reported. (Advocate.com)