Putin Signs Homophobic Bill into Law

As the United States celebrates DOMA's death (and Bert and Ernie's New Yorker cover), Russian President Vladimir Putin is having none of it. On Monday, the Russian president signed into law a bill that bans talking about homosexuality to kids, and makes gay pride marches illegal.

The new law bans the "propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations," and makes it illegal for Russians to share information with minors that may create a "distorted understanding" that gay relationships are "socially equivalent"—with fines going up to 5,000 rubles ($156). It's also now against the law to disseminate information "directed at forming nontraditional sexual setup."

Critics of the legislation argue that the new law is part of a wider move to squeeze out Russia's gay minority, but its supporters have maintained that it's only about protecting children from harmful influences. (As though that weren't offensive in itself.)

“It’s not about imposing some sort of sanctions on homosexuality…It’s about protecting children from such information,” Putin said Tuesday.

Watch out Russian Teletubbies, you're next.

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