Why I Haven’t Posted the Rest of VICE’s “Young and Gay in Putin’s Russia” Videos

Nikolai Alexeyev

I recently posted the first two installments of a VICE video series called Young and Gay in Putin’s Russia. Though VICE released three additional videos in the series on YouTube, I’ve decided against posting them here (or even linking to them), as I was disturbed by VICE’s uncritical coverage of Nikolai Alexeyev in the fourth and fifth installments.

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Putin on Gays in Russia: “Just leave kids alone, please.”
(Updated Jan. 20)

Vladimir Putin close-up

The latest homophobic remark from Russian President Vladimir Putin: When asked earlier today about gays in Russia, he commented, “One can feel calm and at ease. Just leave kids alone, please.”

The Washington Post suggests that Putin meant the comment to be reassuring to those concerned about Russia’s notorious anti-gay law, which shows just how out of touch he is.

To state the obvious (or what I wish were obvious to Putin), it is homophobia and the anti-gay policies of governments like Russia’s—(and Nigeria‘s to name just one other)—that wreck havoc on young people’s lives. Gays interacting with youth is not the problem. (Indeed, it could be one part of the solution.)

Click here or on ‘Read More’ for a Jan. 20 update.