A new bill proposed in the Russian State Duma confirms that the country is specifically targeting LGBT people for oppression under its laws. The new legislation, proposed by MP Aleksey Zhuravlev, deputy of the Duma, would use a parent’s sexuality as grounds to deny child custody.
If an opposite-sex couple had children, but then one spouse came out as gay and they separated, that parent could be denied custody under this bill just for having a “non-traditional sexual orientation.” It similarly would deny custody on the grounds of alcoholism, drug use, a history of violence, insanity, and abuse.
According to Zhuravlev, it’s not just enough to ban “gay propaganda” in public spaces, “but also in the family” because it can do “great harm” to the child’s mind. To defend the bill, Zhuravlev cited the fraudulent Mark Regnerus study that claimed children were harmed by same-sex parenting. The bill mirrors another law passed this year that banned the adoption of Russian children by same-sex couples from other countries. Same-sex adoption is also prohibited throughout Russia itself.
Just this week, Russian President Vladimir Putin claimed that his country wasn’t homophobic because they “have absolutely normal relations.” There’s nothing “normal” or affirming about considering laws that compare gay people to drug addicts and child abusers as a means to deny them the basic human right of having a family.