No Gay May Day In Moscow

Moscow’s mayor cares more about Soviet tradition than Democratic progress.

Yury Luzhkov and his cronies today announced that gay rights groups are verboten from marching in this year’s May Day celebration, a May 1 celebration of workers dating back to 1886.

Luzhkov spokesman Sergei Tsoi’s statement on the matter makes no secret of the administration’s reverence for the labor movement. It also shows their spinelessness, for they place blame on “society,” not their own stagnation:

The council will act decisively and uncompromisingly to prevent attempts to hold such events because society is overwhelmingly opposed to the gay lifestyle and philosophy.

It is a matter of surprise and indignation that gays plan to carry out unsanctioned gatherings in various parts of Moscow during the Festival of Peace and Work.

The lackey then conjured up previous examples of violence, like last year’s nationalist attack during gay pride. Tsoi used that event to offer this patronizing placation: “There could be bloodshed and no one wants that.”

Gay rights activists sure don’t want that, nor do they want a ban. Prominent activist Nikolai Alexeyev told AFP that Tsoi’s using security as scapegoats, “This is not a question of security. It is only a question of the personal hatred of the Moscow mayor towards gay people.” He also reportedly distanced his movement from those seen in the West, where spectacle often distracts from the political message.