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Right Wing Pundits Blame Russian LGBT Community for Violence

by Jason St. Amand
National News Editor
Wednesday Oct 23, 2013
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Riot police officers guarded activists who had been beaten by antigay protesters at a rally in St. Petersburg, Russia, in June.
Riot police officers guarded activists who had been beaten by antigay protesters at a rally in St. Petersburg, Russia, in June.  (Source:AP Photo/Dmitry Lovetsky)

In a radio interview broadcast last weekend, two ultra-right conservatives claim Russia’s LGBT community is causing the anti-gay violence in the country. The pair of hard right wing pundits then went on to defend the recently enacted highly controversial laws that aim to silence and persecute Russia’s LGBT citizenry.

According to Right Wing Watch, Brian Camenker, the president of the anti-gay group MassResistance, spoke with Linda Harvey, the host of Mission America’s radio show "Harvey This Weekend," about the recent spate of anti-LGBT violence occurring in Russia. The two pundits debated whether the news reports documenting the violence are true.

"Well, it’s hard to say," Camenker said. "I would say that a lot of it is probably true. The natural way people react to homosexuality - outside of all the diversity training - is a certain amount of revulsion. So if two men start kissing in the public street, you can expect a certain reaction from people."

Harvey defended Russia’s "homosexual propaganda" law, saying "But that doesn’t mean that this is a bad law, it means that this is a law that protects children and that will be a separate issue, and if we were dealing with logical people and a logical movement they will see it as a separate issue if they were being just and fair but they’re not just and fair."

Both pundits said they were not supporting violence against the LGBT community but did blame the victims of the anti-gay attacks that have occurred in Russia.

"If you’re going to do something that most of the population considers bad or immoral or disgusting in public, you’re going to get a certain reaction," Camenker said. "I think that they push that as far as they can and sometimes you just can’t do it."

"There’s some provocation going on," Harvey said. "Not justifying violence in any way for all of these people listening and wanting to spin this the way they will want to do."

Both Harvey’s organization, Mission America and Camenker’s organization Mass Resistance have been designated hate groups by the Southern Poverty Law Center based upon their history of anti-LGBT rights stances.

You can listen to the radio show over at Right Wing Watch’s website.

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