We’ve already discussed why Trump’s relationship with Vladimir Putin is terrible for us. But in light of the expanding firestorm over Russia’s outsized influence in the Trump administration, the question is, just how terrible. As it turns out, it could be worse than we imagined.
Trump’s campaign was bizarrely and distressingly cozy with anti-democratic Russia. The candidate himself openly admired Putin and even egged Russia on its hacking of the Democratic National Committee. U.S. intelligence agencies concluded that Russia was trying to put a finger on the scale in the election, an unprecedented intrusion into American democracy.
That much everyone knows. But less known is the extent to which Russia has emerged as a ringleader of the American religious right. In fact, according to one new study, Russia is the leader of the global Christian right. Which in part explains why the Trump administration remains enamored of a nation with a smaller economy than the state of California.
To say that this is a disastrous development is an understatement. Russia’s homophobia runs deep and virulent. Here’s a sampling of the type of harassment and violence that are now commonplace in the country, where three-quarter of its citizens believe homosexuality should not be accepted by society.
Here are a few examples from the many available:
- Routinely allows thugs to attack gay activists without fear of prosecution
- Arrest gay activists for standing up for their rights
- Bans any pro-gay materials as “propaganda”
- Forbids same-sex couples from adopting
- Blocked the country’s most popular LGBTQ site
- Banned transgender people from getting drivers
Much of this has been done in concert with the Russian Orthodox Church, which has emerged as an ally of Putin and which now provides a template for the type of Church-State relationship the religious right would like to see in America.
The American religious right’s admiration for Putin and Russia soared during the Obama administration. Such high-profile figures as Franklin Graham, Bryan Fischer, and Brian Brown have proclaimed Russia to be on the right track when it comes to gay issues. But for a long time, the assumption was that the religious right was simply exporting its particular brand of homophobia to a friendly venue.
As it turns out, according to the report from People for the American Way, we may actually be a net importer of Russia hatred. At the heart of this disturbing trend is Brian Brown. Brown headed the rapidly dying National Organization for Marriage but he has managed to fail upwards as head of the International Organization for the Family, formerly known as the World Congress of Families. In this role, Brown has been hitting the road, landing in Russia just last week to promote closer relations between the U.S. and Putin.
But IOF is not a homegrown organization. It is, according to report author Casey Michel, “a product of joint Russian-American homophobic ingenuity.” Two sociology professors in Moscow, concerned that progressive legislation would bring about the collapse of Russia, were instrumental in its formation. Since then WCF and now IOF have tightened its relationship with Putin’s authoritarian regime, even planning to hold a summit inside the Kremlin in 2014. (WCF dropped out of the event after Russia invaded the Ukraine, but some WCF leaders attended anyway.)
What has changed over the years is that, by increasing repression (and violence), Russia has been able to position itself as the promised land for the homophobic right in the U.S. and claim the moral (if that’s thew word) high ground.
Exactly how deep the relationships run is anyone’s guess. Putin has deep pockets and grand ideas, and he’ll be happy to collaborate with anyone who espouses his nationalist viewpoints. But the salient point is that Russia has gone from being the recipient of homophobic outreach to the standard against which the far right judges the U.S. At a minimum, it is setting the tone for our bitterest enemies.
Just one glance at the hell Russia has made for the lives of its LGBTQ citizens is chilling. What’s even more chilling is the growing power of the eager audience that would like to see that hell replicated in the U.S.
Countdown to the anti-lgbt Log Cabin trolls coming in here screaming that “Trump Hates (insert name of country or group here) ….and THEY hate gay people (Log Cabin NEVER uses lgbt)….so THAT is why Trump is wonderful!!!
Other than public hangings there isn’t much difference between Russia and the WORST of the anti-lgbt countries out there. So Log Cabin Trolls….you may want to sit this post out.
Oh, unless of course you are just coming in to whine and cry that this lgbt blog focuses too much on the most anti-lgbt administratin imaginable. Then we will just laugh at you.
Evidence is horrible for the log cabin trolls. They want their daddy types in the GOP and think Mike Pence is hot.
I end my thought with a paraphrased quote from John F. Kennedy: “Those who ride on the back of the tiger in the pursuit of power, ended up inside.”
This right wing populist nonsense will consume those who use it to gain power.
By the way, @DCguy, if less people voted for Hillary then Trump would have won the popular vote.
I would say that most anti-LGBT GOP legislators are either closet queens or homophobic individuals. Tor all I know, Trump is a bi and wants PUtin to give him a good spanking.
It’s always interesting that the more the corruption and fascism of a country the more homophobic they are. At least today anyways. Yesterday they would’ve been after the Jews.
I love how these evil hate organizations always take opposite meaning names. How much do they work towards helping families besides looking to tear them apart. Oh yeah. No money in that.
Russia and the Middle East have a lot more in common than either wants to admit… and this is precisely why I have no time for such supernatural hogwash. Whose interpretation of bronze/iron age gobbledygook is the correct one? Why is violence and oppression so commonplace in countries where fundamentalism runs rampant? Where’s this made up god to come down and clear up this nonsense? This is how you call out draconian laws and homophobia under the guise of religion… you don’t muddy the waters and try to say “culture.” I only wish Queerty would report like this on OTHER religions, and not just Christianity, and I’ll keep saying that shit until the cows come home.
You hit the nail on the head with your comment and I commend you for it. To this day the killer of those three kids outside a gay youth center in Israel has not been brought to justice and the incident preceded the knife attack by an orthodox, recently released from prison zealot who had been imprisoned for the same type of crime only days before. Israel is no different from the very thing they claim wants to destroy them.
Bob, the reason for that is Netanyahu. He is ultra conservative. He has no interest helping LGBT people.
@Xzamilloh I agree. The list of anti-gay examples in Russia are all the same examples in Muslim majority countries. In fact, Muslim majority countries are way worse in their treatment of gays. However, the far left will paint these same Muslims as victims and advocate for bringing them into the US. Even after the Orlando night club shooting, the very next day many gays were standing up for Muslims saying end Islamophobia while then going on Twitter and attacking Christians for saying they’re praying for the families effected by the shooting. Shouldn’t it have been Muslims standing up and saying to end homophobia? There should be fair reporting of all attacks on gays from all religions, governments, and hate groups and not just sensationalized news stories littered with an agenda or bias.
And here is one of the delusional trolls, mhoffman. A republican bootlicker who would take a beating. Hey… They have it worse in other countries he says.
No. Russia is just as bad as Muslim countries so quit your lying.
Also. Stop lying about your own side. The far left aren’t doing that. Your little Dumpster is doing business with countries like Saudi Arabia and Egypt. You have to wonder why neither country made it on his illogical ban. Oh… he has hotels there.
So quit your perpetual lying and blaming the so called “far left”. There is no far left in America. I am tired of you right wing gays saying “oh but we have it worse elsewhere” while accepting breadcrumbs and a beating from your pathetic GOP.
@Gian85 I never said Russia was good, I stated that many Muslim majority nations are just as bad and sometimes worse but strangely enough you won’t see them every mentioned on this website or left-leaning blogs as a problem.
As for my claim that many gays defended Islam after the Orlando night club shooting, that is very much true. For you to say the left isn’t defending Islam, then you are grossly wrong and ignorant on that. https://lgbtai.files.wordpress.com/2015/05/13353_862364043824027_3577948761410441743_n.jpg
Plus to claim Trump only picked Muslim countries where he has hotels is false. Afghanistan, Niger, Morocco, Algeria, Bangladesh, and other Muslim majority nations aren’t on the travel ban list, does Trump have hotels in those countries? The countries named where decided upon in this 2015 bill https://www.congress.gov/bill/114th-congress/house-bill/158 per the guidance of our intelligence community
But you’re getting off topic from my original response. My original response was that left-leaning, in the current political climate, refuse to cite that Islam treats gays worse than any other religion.
Hoff, it is clear you are a Trump supporters and your delusional lie about the ban makes no sense. Nobody brought up those other countries. The countries in the ban haven’t had one of their citizens commit an attack on the US in over thirty years. Saudi Arabia, Qatar nor Egypt are on that list. And those who committed the attack on 9/11 were Saudis. So quit your Trump boot licking and perpetual brownnosing.
And you lie habitually about the left. The left came out strongly against the attack in Orlando. But generalizations don’t work and are insufficient.
You are an ignorant buffoon and you support Trump, ergo you support Senator Sessions who is violently antigay. Learn the reality please.
By the way, you shouldn’t be citing the republican controlled Congress as one of your sources. It doesn’t help your credibility.
@Gian85 You stated, “Nobody brought up those other countries” when I mentioned countries not in the travel ban. I mentioned those countries because you previously stated that the travel ban (even though its actually a 90 day pause) is an “illogical ban” because you stated countries not in the travel pause are not in it because Trump “has hotels there”. Those are your words. I merely cited Muslim countries also not in the ban which also don’t have Trump hotels in them. So for you to state that the countries not on the list are countries which Trump does business with isn’t 100% accurate. There are 58 Muslim majority nations in the world, 7 are on our 90 day travel pause list.
You also stated this blatant lie when accusing me of lying: “The countries in the ban haven’t had one of their citizens commit an attack on the US in over thirty years”. If that is true, are you saying that not a single Somalian refugee has attacked US citizens? What about this Somali refugee attack at OSU in 2016: http://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/suspect-dead-after-ohio-state-university-car-knife-attack-n689076 OR what about this Somali refugee attack at mall in Minnesota in 2016: http://wjon.com/10th-victim-emerges-in-st-cloud-mall-attack/
Sounds like you are pushing alternative facts now when you state that from the countries on the travel pause list (Somalia being one of them) that they haven’t had “one of their citizens commit an attack on the US in over thirty years”. I’d respect you if you’d admit that you were wrong in that regard.
Then when you say, “The left came out strongly against the attack in Orlando” they did come together after the tragic events in Orlando but my question to you is, did they come out against Islam? Or did they come out against Islamophobia?
Go back to Brietbart or whatever lying site you came from. They like losers like you spouting out falsehoods. You want fake news? Look in the mirror bigot.
And your defense of a liar like Trump is not helping you. The travel ban does absolutely nothing to improve safety. He has emboldened enemies of this country and made us more vulnerable. You are just too naive and ignorant to see that. I already named reasons why Trump is bad for this country. And all you can do is go on delusional rants about the left wing and Islam. Go grow up kid.
@Gian85 You keep claiming I’m a liar but I am the one who specifically pointed out where you lied and provided you with a link from NBC news proving what you said was false. Yet you still won’t admit that you were wrong in your claim. Instead you’ve littered this comment section with name calling and lack of substance. Keep defending Islam though
“who specifically pointed out where you lied and provided you with a link from NBC news proving what you said was false. ”
Yet I never lied about anything I have said. You’re just another stupid liar on here who does anything to defend Donald Loser, who is already panning out to be one of the worst Presidents since Herbert Hoover. By the way, your little travel ban also violated the Due Process clause.
You are a liar and loser. You lie about everything I have said, you refuse to address points and you’re a loser just like the man you helped “elect” (illegitimately I might add).
And does Donald care about you as a gay person? I highly doubt it. He’s already in the process of taking all your rights away. And imagine what Jeff Sessions would have to say about you. Sessions is a man who believes in conversion therapy. He would force you to undergo conversion therapy.
And all you can talk about is your illogical fears of Islam. You can’t even look at the enemy within the US that threatens this entire country. By the way, there was a shooting that happened in Canada not too long ago. Right wing fanatic. The Donald couldn’t even mention it on his twitter.
By the way, point out where I’m defending Islam?
I don’t care for any religion and view Islam on the same level as Christianity. A danger to the very existence of democracy.
@Gian85 When referencing yourself and you say, “Yet I never lied about anything I have said”, then how come you said this regarding the 7 nations in the travel pause, “The countries in the ban haven’t had one of their citizens commit an attack on the US in over thirty years”?
I pointed to two Somali refugee terror attacks from just a few months ago and you still don’t think saying, “The countries in the ban haven’t had one of their citizens commit an attack on the US in over thirty years” is a false statement?
Also when you say Trump’s presidency is “illegitimate”, what is illegitimate about it?
So when are you going to point out the vast majority of shootings in this country were done by US citizens? So if another country bans US citizens because they kill more than Muslims will you have an issue with that?
Trump’s presidency won off a fixed election and lost the popular vote by a wide margin. He needed help from Putin and many of his people had direct contact with Russia. He isn’t legitimate and the election had far too many irregularities to be considered valid. So Trump does not have a legitimate claim to power. You are a Trump drumbeater… We all get it by now.
@Gian85 What do shootings in America have to do with how countries treat LGBT people (which is actually the topic of this article)? But yeah, obviously in America, most shootings would be done by Americans just as I’m sure the majority of shootings in Mexico are done by Mexicans and a majority of stabbings done in the UK and done by mostly people in the UK, not sure how that’s relevant, but ok. Regarding other countries’ immigration policies, they are totally allowed to dictate whatever they feel is best for their country, but when you state that US citizens kill more than Muslims, you are inaccurate simply because of population.
How was the 2016 election fixed? Were voting machines tampered with? Also you cite Trump is illegitimate because he lost the popular vote, would you also say Obama is illegitimate because he lost the popular vote in the 2008 Democratic primary to Hillary Clinton, she won the popular vote but Obama won the super-delegates. Is that also illegitimate?
And the little liar replies again with the same Trump influenced drivel. When you decide to post some original thoughts get back to me. After the Flynn scandal, a new scandal of interfering with an FBI investigation is unfolding. Your man may not even make it pass a year before impeachment or his resignation. Oh and looking at the shootings and murder rates, I can say Americans kill more than anyone else.
Oh wow. You brought up the 2008 primaries. Nonsensical reply. We are talking about the general election, not primaries. Your man never really secured anything more than a plurality in his. The FBI, CIA and NSA have all confirmed that Russian interference happened in the 2016 election. This is undeniable fact. This eliminates the credibility of the election and the credibility of your dear leader. You won’t discuss the facts and you will side track because you are a gullible fool.
By the way, many of the voting machines used in key states like Pennsylvania, Michigan, Ohio and Wisconsin are vulnerable to malware. In addition, these same machines are banned in other states like California and Oregon. They are even banned in entire countries in Europe. It was a fix and your man is not legitimate. He isn’t legitimately President and I will never view or accept him as President. He is simply the buffoon occupying the White House.
Now continue your endless brownnosing.
@Gian85 “The FBI, CIA and NSA have all confirmed that Russian interference happened in the 2016 election”
No they didn’t. They confirmed that hackers who may have links to Russia intelligence hacked the DNC email server. They didn’t hack the “election”, to say such a thing would denote that they hacked actual machines, but those machines aren’t even connected to the internet.
It wouldn’t be hard to hack the DNC email server as we seen they accidentally gave the Bernie Sanders campaign access to information only accessible by the Clinton campaign and given the fact that Hillary Clinton’s campaign manager John Podesta used the word “[email protected]” as his password for his Gmail account.
China hacked both the DNC and RNC back in 2008 as well.
Wikileaks even confirmed that Russia did not provide any emails to them. If we assume Russia really did give Wikileaks those emails, which email was the nail in the coffin for Hillary’s campaign? I don’t remember reading any emails showing illegal activity that would sway votes. I’d be interested to hear which email you claim changed the minds of so many people.
The silver lining is Trump has managed to energize democrats and town hall meetings have been a disaster for republicans. Trump will go down in corruption scandals unlike anything you have seen.
John Dean, Nixon’s former counsel, was correct in saying the corruption under Nixon pales in comparison to Trump. From the growing scandal of the Yemen-ghazi failed operation (where Trump wasn’t even watching as the operation unfolded), to Ties to organized crime in Eastern Europe, and to receiving financial support from Russia to illegitimately win the election… Trump won’t last a single term. It is unlikely he will be around for four years when the scandals continue to worsen.
Flynn and Yemen-ghazi (worse than Benghazi by far) are just the tip of the ice berg. Trump will probably wind up behind bars after the impeachment.
By the way, it is also said that Trump has violated the constitution in several ways. The emoluments clause and due process clause comes to mind. His utter disregard for the Court system will be his ultimate undoing.
He is finished. Even republicans don’t want him around anymore with his 39% approval rating (and dropping!).
The Odious Man is just as anti-democratic as Putin. He holds an office that by any normal standard he did not win. Yet he persists in claiming that those 3 million votes he lost by are all ‘fake’ voters. Equally, Putin plays fast and loose with the voting system in Russia – look at how he worked the system to become President again. Those two have far more in common than that which divides them. Richard Nixon was a criminal, but at least he had the good grace to try and hide it! The Odious Man and his staff have already committed various crimes in his first month in office. Yet he boldly attacks the media and judiciary as corrupt institutions. The Odious Man, Putin and Duterte in the Philippines are the chief threats to human rights and democracy around the world. In the coming weeks we will see what happens in the European elections – looks like the extreme right bandwagon is about to lose its wheels at last.
Two people to watch:
Emmanuel Macron – whom Putin is trying to sabotage but failing. Macron is galvanizing younger voters. Young voters in Europe tend to vote in far larger percentages than in the US.
Martin Schulz – the sharp tongued left wing Social Democratic Party candidate is seriously threatening Merkel’s grip. Either Schulz or Merkel are fine by me, but Schulz would stand up to Putin far better. Schulz embarrassed one of Putin’s friends.. Silvio Berlusconi. Schulz could be a unifying factor for the left throughout Europe.
@Gian85 – excellent analysis. I agree that Schultz is probably the better bet for Europe, though Macron is clearly his own man. In the end though, I will happily accept Angela back again, even if she on the right. She has demonstrated compassion and flexibliity as well as a firm commitment to the ideals of the EU.
Spot on. I must say Merkel may be a conservative in Germany, but she would easily be left leaning in the US.
Macron is deeply inspirational and truly one we should all support. No matter the feeble sabotage attempts, he is outspoken and doesn’t have political baggage. The proPutin forces are trying to make his marriage an issue, but he replied and said “at least I didn’t pay my wife for fake jobs” (like conservative candidate Fillon did).
Hoffman – habitual liar who is trying to cover for Trump.
Tell me… As a gay conservative do you think being beaten and murdered by right wing fanatics in Russia is better than what happens in Islamic countries? I guess you like being beaten up. Explains your political views quite well.
You right wing self hating gays should just go away right now. The last month is proof that Trump is lying and selling this country out.
Cite an exact quote of mine where I lied about something and provide a factual article proving what I said was a lie.
To answer your question, “do you think being beaten and murdered by right wing fanatics in Russia is better than what happens in Islamic countries?”
No, I think both are very bad and that’s why I’m proud to be an American and think we should be careful as to who we let into this country and should only let in people who share our values.
Now that I answered your question, I have one for you. Without bringing up other religions or groups, how does Islam accept and tolerate gays?
oh wow. You can’t even address the subject. You are a Trump apologist and you are a copy of Milo. Go find your brain please. Our values? What a raving buffoon. There are people… Like Republicans who want to take all your rights away. Some Republicans, like Jeff Sessions, think you are mentally I’ll.
You lying little prick. This nation was founded on immigration. Not isolation. Oh and kicking out mainly Mexicans isn’t going to do anything.
You are delusional, ignorant and willing to take a beating from republicans because you think we have it worse elsewhere. The same Republicans linked to Yoweri Museveni.
By the way, some Republicans want to see you committed to a mental hospital or executed. Some values. Sorry, but the left is better than the far right. You are a lying Trump apologist drone.
@Gian85 You sound very triggered. Not sure what you mean when you say that I “can’t address the subject” when I specifically quoted your question and answered it. You are the one who didn’t answer my question and instead went on a tirade about Milo
I’ll wait for you to answer my question since I answered yours
And you sound very unhinged and mentally imbalanced. I guess that’s what happens when you’re gay and right wing. You are in direct contradiction with yourself and your politics are in conflict with your very existence. Most right wingers want to institutionalize, imprison and/or kill you in this country. By the way, I brought up a variety of other points about the rampant corruption and unconstitutional acts of the Trump “administration” but you refused to address them because you care more about the breadcrumbs you are given by the GOP.
Interesting exchanges between @gian85 and @mhoffman953. I do find it very odd for a gay man to be so vigorously defending The Odious Man in the White and his cohorts. Turkeys voting for Christmas comes to mind. The reality is that the whole world – excluding The Odious Man, his multi-billionaire Cabinet and his deluded followers – sees that ban is nothing more than racism and anti-islamist. How about the ‘home-grown’ terrorists like McVey? Are you suggesting that you also restrict the movement of the many millions of uneducated right wing dumbos like him? Oh wait – that’s who voted for The Odious Man. That ban will do nothing to protect your country – it is purely for effect. No government and no ban can stop a determined terrorist from doing his worst. And so far, The Odious Man has created far more terror than anyone else. Oh and by the way, a single terrorist, or even several terrorists from a particular area does not mean that everyone who lives there are also terrorists. That’s racism and/or bigotry . Perhaps you can tell me if it is correct to say The Odious Man is a terrorist for the killing of innocent children in his botched military action ? I say yes.
I don’t particularly like Trump supporters and especially gay men who support this atrocious administration.
The obstruction of an ongoing FBI investigation is the beginning of the end for El Dumbo. That was a story that broke yesterday. It appears James Comey isn’t totally useless.
And Yemen-ghazi is turning out to be far worse. He sent the seals in with inadequate Intel, didn’t monitor the operation as it unfolded, lost a $70 million piece of military hardware and killed a bunch of children. The Intel that was recovered was minimal from what I have heard. But he called it a success lmao.
@davidkohl “Perhaps you can tell me if it is correct to say The Odious Man is a terrorist for the killing of innocent children in his botched military action ? I say yes”
Based on that logic, are you calling Obama a terrorist too? You must be since Obama blew up a doctors without borders hospital by mistake
No matter what denomination or country , christians are a bunch of jerks
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