FRANCE: European Court Of Human Rights Rules Russia’s “Gay Propaganda” Law To Be Discriminatory

The Guardian reports:

A Russian law that bans gay “propaganda” encourages homophobia and discrimination, the European court of human rights has ruled, in a sharply worded rebuke to the Kremlin. Three Russian gay rights activists brought the case against the 2013 federal statute, widely known as the “gay propaganda” law, after they were arrested between 2009-12 for protesting against local anti-gay laws, which became the model for the later national law.

“By adopting such laws the [Russian] authorities reinforce stigma and encourage homophobia, which is incompatible with the notions of equality, pluralism and tolerance inherent in a democratic society,” the Strasbourg-based ECHR said in a comprehensive demolition of the arguments advanced by Russian lawyers.

The court ruled such measures were “likely to be counterproductive in achieving the declared legitimate aims of protection of health and the protection of the rights of others,” while saying the vague wording opened the door to abuse.

It concluded that Russia had violated the European convention on human rights on freedom of expression (article 10) and prohibition of discrimination (article 14). The state has been ordered to pay damages totalling €43,000 (£37,800) plus costs and interest within three months.

Of the seven judges on the panel, only the Russian judge dissented. A spokesman for Putin says the Kremlin will “study” the ruling.

  • Joe in PA

    the quotes around “study”…nice touch.

    • Jonathan Smith

      I assume that means “fuck off Europe”?

      • OdieDenCO


    • (((GC)))

      Like Regnerus’s sham of a same-sex-parenting “study”?

  • we can file this under…”Duh”.

    • PeterC

      Can we assume that this ruling would also apply to certain churches and other odd organizations here in the USA? (For instance the Republican Party,)

  • Todd20036

    Paltry fine, but I guess it’s the best they can do. Frankly, any regular commenter on this site can tell you the “value” of gay propaganda laws.

  • Jonathan Smith

    Only took four years.
    Wasn’t that as long as WWII?

    • Câl

      Four years is “As long as WWII?” in a comment on a story about Europe shows how little world history is studied in the USA or a lack of understanding of the suffering of most nations in that war. For Europe, its colonies, the Commonwealth and most of Asia (though China was at war with Japan since 1933), the war started in 1939. The US remained neutral for a further nearly 2 1/2 years before stepping in at the last possible moment, forced to by Japan’s action not its own volition so most of the world which fought the war calls it nearer to 6 years.

      Sorry, I’m just sensitive after spending time at the weekend talking to my father who hardly saw his father from ’38 when he joined up early, (seeing the war coming after looking after Sudetenland refugees), and rarely came home until early 1946 after being in Europe, India (training the Indian army) and then with them in North Africa, Italy and finally France and Germany.

  • netxtown

    Like Pooty and/or Russia give two shits what “Europe” anything thinks….

    • That_Looks_Delicious

      Putin cares intensely about Europe, just in a negative way. His every waking moment is spent trying to find ways to break up the EU, break up NATO, break up the ECHR, etc.

  • Rex

    A “sharply worded rebuke” – yeah, that’ll do the trick.

  • Dazzer

    Russia has the most judgments against it in the ECHR of any of its signatories.

    Russia tends to just ignore the rulings.

    However, these things tend to have a certain PR value and even if Russia itself does nothing, these rulings are used by other countries to beat it around the head on its human rights record.

    This is a nominal victory for the forces of good – but it won’t lead to any change in Russian policy and the fine will never be paid.

    • Robert Pierce

      I think it’s high time the ECHR booted Russia as a signatory to the Council of Europe, isolate, ostracise it. Dialogue has never worked.

      • Dazzer

        Completely agree.

        Sadly, that’s not the way the Council of Europe works. Its essential philosophy is to have everyone inside the tent pissing out, rather than someone outside pissing in.

        In some ways it’s like the Commonwealth – except the Commonwealth is actually prepared to throw people out.

        • olandp

          But Vlad is pissing in the tent, just like his hookers.

      • That_Looks_Delicious

        Russia IS leaving the Court, but of its own volition. It’s not being booted. It’s just that the leaving process (like Brexit) takes several years.

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    • Shy Guy

      While Russia will ignore it, I hope this ruling will help overturn Lithuania’s similar law (which has already been limited in its scope by the EU, but still prevents publishing children’s books with gay characters, or which even refer to gay people in a positive light, amongst other things).

      • vorpal 😼

        Here we have the exact problem nailed on the head as to these “anti-propaganda” laws: you are essentially allowed to say anything as negative and untrue about homosexuality as you like without punishment; however, challenging those statements with anything neutral or positive or truthful will get you into legal trouble.

        Thus, they have created a society where those that despise LGBT people can create a festering cesspool of blatant lies and fear about LGBT people and there is nothing we can do to stand up for ourselves.

        • B Snow

          In the US it’s called “Religious Freedom”. /Iwishitwassarcasm

    • Do Something Nice

      They’ve got a few other issues too.

      “Russia is reportedly behind a disturbing number of assassinations outside its borders”

  • kaydenpat

    Paging Glenn Greenwald. Come get your boy.

  • Tawreos

    I can’t wait to hear the good christians in the US praise Putin for ignoring this whole human rights violation thing so that they can keep hating the gays like they wish they could at home.

    • vorpal 😼

      You’ll be able to recognize those good wholesome US heterosexual Christians by their beards. Especially on the womenfolk.

  • Boy Elvis

    Not like Putin gives a shit about this, but good on ya, European Court of Human Rights.

  • Dejerrity

    Way to go, EC, the rest of us had this figured out years ago.

  • Goodboy

    Yeah, just like how Pootie promised to investigate Chechnya.

  • ByronK

    Can we please end this charade of pretending Russia is a civilized country?

  • ceeenbee

    I am certain this ruling will trigger a great deal of serious introspection in comrade putin and will understand the hurt and pain he has caused so many.

    Nah! He’ll just say fuck you to Human Rights Organizations like he always does.

  • ColdCountry

    Like Putin cares.

  • JWC

    Its small but it is a step

  • Jean-Marc in Canada

    “…the Kremlin will “study” the ruling.”

    Translation: We will stick in a file cabinet for approximately 4 weeks and then declare that we reject it outright. Further, we will declare that there are no gay people in Russia and that Russian blood is pure heterosexual blood.

    Sounds about right.

  • Gianni

    Only one question: Does Putin or his country give a rat’s ass?