Russia’s new homophobic laws have rightfully drawn criticism in America as both offensive and divisive, but that outrage has evidently not stopped high-profile Russian figures from continuing to attack the country's gay people. In the latest offense, Russian news broadcaster and anti-gay proponent Dmitri Kisilev, who is the anchor of one of Russia’s top rated news shows, had this to say about gay people on a state-administered channel:
“I think that just imposing fines on gays for homosexual propaganda among teenagers is not enough. They should be banned from donating blood, sperm. And their hearts, in case of the automobile accident, should be buried in the ground or burned as unsuitable for the continuation of life.”
This rhetoric is evocative of the propaganda that powered the Holocaust. Kisilev suggests that gay people are biologically impure and inferior. Kisilev' does not merely discourage homosexuality; he dehumanizes gays and defines them by nothing more than their sexuality.
Although a person’s sexuality is indeed a component of his or her identity, it is not a basis to determine the content of his or her character, and especially not the quality of his or her DNA.
Moreover, Kisilev is not just a random radical political pundit, he is one of the most popular pundits in Russia, and the government funds his work.
Kisilev abhors homosexuals so severely that he would rather people die in the absence of their blood and organ donations than have their DNA taint the bodies of heterosexuals. It is preposterous that Kisilev expressed this sentiment on an outlet that is government funded and that articulates the beliefs of President Putin and his administration.
Russia has proved that its treatment of gay people remains antediluvian, and the United States and its allies should treat it diplomatically as such. Any nation that so overtly and actively suppresses the private and harmless behavior of its citizens, and then robs its citizens of their human dignity, is not worthy of global leadership.