For well over a year, Queerty has been dinging the dingbats with our esteemed Douche of the Week award. We thought it was only fair to honor those who do right by the LGBT community.
Introducing the Queerty Bad-Ass of the Week.
Even as the city council was frustrating his efforts to hold a Pride rally, a gay activist in the city of Syktyvkar, Russia, was brutally assaulted by a neo-Nazi activist.
Artem Kalinin, who was trying to get clearance to hold a Pride parade in downtown Syktyvkar on Sunday, was being interviewed by a TV station when he was assaulted by Alex Kolegov, leader of a local neo-Nazi group (above).
Gay Star News reports Kalinin reported the assault to police, but that Kolegov was not arrested.
Brusied but not beaten, Kalinin said the rally will go on as planned. Bowing to complaints from conservatives and religious groups, Mayor Ivan Pozdeyev denied Kalinin’s request to hold the demonstration in the center of the city—instead allowing it in a less central spot. Pozdeyev has a plan to prevent future conflict: he’s asked lawmakers to draft new legislation banning future Pride rallies.
Sadly, this isn’t Kalinin’s brush with homophobic violence. In March 2011, he was attacked during the city’s Week Against Homophobia:
I felt a sudden punch on my head, from which I began to lose coordination. Blood gushed out of my head, leaking on my whole neck and the collar of the jacket. We began to fight, he began to hit an unknown object all over my body as I realized later, it was a stick with an iron knob. As always, the neighbors did not hear anything and did not see the floor of my porch was covered with splashes of blood.
During the scuffle I was able to escape… Perhaps because of the ice-covered ground, I fell. The assailant chased me from the door of my house, made a punch in my face and head area, the stick in the hands of the assailant at the moment I have not noticed.
I decided to reason the attacker and turned to him with the words: “Come on, calm down …” In response, I heard a familiar: “You’re a fag, I always wanted to kill you! If you want, I’ll kill you, I don’t care… “.
Also from his words, I realized that he had “a friend in police, who offered us to help trace you down, they won’t charge me for this”. Of course, I realized that the attacker knows nothing about criminal charges, feeling his full impunity. I was lying on the cold snow, the guy went methodically to offend me by applying successive kicks to the body. At this point, a couple of young people were walking on the sidewalk who have done nothing to call for help or to have at least some resistance to the attacker.
After some time, the police crew arrived which I called earlier. Most of all I was struck by the reaction of these employees have taken the side of my abuser. The assailant went on to explain that I was “fag, there’s no need for him to get acquainted with the guys” and then asked the law enforcement officials: “Fags are not jailed nowadays?”
So the next time you think you’re too hung over to go to Pride, remember some people are risking their safety just to affirm their very existence.
All together now: Good on you!