Monday, August 29, 2016


Lady Gaga Champions Gay 'Equality' In Moscow

American singer Lady Gaga arrives at Pulkovo Airport in St. Petersburg for the Russian leg of her "Born This Way Ball" tour.
American singer Lady Gaga arrives at Pulkovo Airport in St. Petersburg for the Russian leg of her "Born This Way Ball" tour.
Lady Gaga, one of pop music's most outlandish acts, took her tour to Russia's capital for a performance that was predictably ribald and indomitable despite what she said were threats of arrest if she broke local laws against "homosexual propaganda."

The American singer is a longtime gay-rights activist who had spoken out to thousands of fans three nights before, in Russia's second city of St. Petersburg.

St. Petersburg is the birthplace of antigay legislation that's left the local lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender (LGBT) community feeling embattled and is about to reach the national parliament.

It has also been replicated in neighboring Ukraine, where lawmakers are trying to proscribe the "promotion of homosexuality" because they argue that it's a threat to national security.

At Moscow's Olympic Arena on December 12, Lady Gaga continued her "Born This Way Ball" tour in front of a packed house and left no doubt as to where she stood on discrimination based on sexual orientation.

She prefaced her call for unity and equality in Russia with an expletive that many people might find objectionable, so here's a slightly edited transcript of what she said:

You know, I can't even really believe that you're all here, because when they first called me they were like, "We want you to go to Russia but, you know, we might have some problems because of all the gay propaganda in your show." But I want to thank you. I want to thank you, Moscow. Thank you for spreading the message of equality around the world. Thank you for spreading...the message of "Born This Way." ...Get on your feet. Stand up, Russia. You have one unite. You have one night to come together for the voice of society, for equality in Moscow, equality in Russia. So stand up for yourself or stand up for your friends. Where's all my gay kids tonight? Tonight, this is my house, Russia. You can be gay in my house. And if you ever need me, Moscow, I will just be a telephone call away.

You can watch the video for yourself here.

Lady Gaga chafes at comparisons to Madonna. But her repeated appeals for gay rights in Russia invite another, since a St. Petersburg court just last month threw out a $10 million lawsuit alleging "homosexual propaganda" against that pop doyenne over messages conveyed at a concert in August.

READ about some of the bizarre courtroom exchanges during the Madonna hearing, thanks to RAPSI

Earlier on the Russian leg of her tour, Lady Gaga said that she and associates had received similar threats, including of heavy fines and even arrest.

Reuters cited one of those threats in connection with the St. Petersburg appearance:

Vitaly Milonov, a member of the ruling United Russia party in the St. Petersburg assembly and the architect of a city law that bans gay "propaganda," accused the singer of breaking the law at the beginning of her show.

"We saw that in addition to music, songs and such, there were direct calls for 12-year-old citizens to support the," Milonov said, adding that he would file a complaint to prosecutors over the singer's actions.

He had unsuccessfully called on authorities to bar people under 18 from attending Lady Gaga's show.

A vocal defender of lesbian and gay rights, Lady Gaga said offstage that her managers had received a call threatening her with arrest or a $50,000 fine if she spoke in support of the LGBT community, according to media reports.

The latest antigay initiative was mocked by Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev. He let out a laugh when asked about it and suggested that "not all human relationships are subject to legal regulation."

Lady Gaga tweeted her gratitude for that response:

As with their public sparring over the fate of jailed activists from Pussy Riot, Medvedev's statement is unlikely to tip the scales of Russian justice. After all, legislators in his and Putin's United Russia party are among the most strident supporters of the antigay bill slated for debate in the State Duma in the next few weeks.

-- Andy Heil
This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
by: John Hume from: U.S. Veterans Hospital
December 19, 2012 19:17
Lady Gaga is a leftist, she is an athiest, she is in favor of anything that would destroy morals or any decent behavior. Russia would be doing the world a favor by arresting her and her kind and having them diappear off the face of the earth forever. Don't let Americas leftist do to Russia what they have done to America, now a nation of pansys and cowards.
In Response

by: American Troll
December 19, 2012 19:55
"she is an athiest"

Athiest (Adj.), superlative form of "athy" (comparative form "athier"); often confused with the ideological noun/adjective "atheist."
In Response

by: peter from: ottawa
December 19, 2012 20:10
John, if everyone was the same, we would all be robots.America is all about freedom of thought and expression, so chill out and keep taking your medication
In Response

by: Liza from: Texas
December 19, 2012 20:15
What? I don't believe in any kind of extremism, but because of this I definitely disagree with your comment because I find it extreme.
In Response

by: Matthew from: Tehran
January 06, 2013 02:44
GaGa is a Roman Catholic, she is quite a liberal but she has said she believes in God and that the devil scares her to the core. She's quite a spiritual person but she's also a performer and doesn't let her personal self interfere with what she thinks.

January 06, 2013 15:38
Being black, left-handed or being gay is just as natural. It is a sometimes rare occurrence to fall in Love and to hold that person in your heart and be loved in return ... it is something that should be celebrated! If it’s between two guys or two girls -- all the better. It takes even more courage to defend that LOVE!

I am the son of a catholic father who never went to church and a protestant mother who took us to church and Sunday school. Onward christian soldiers; I think not. Such absolute drivel. To be manipulated by a santa claus; an easter bunny and worst of all a bogus cross?

It’s now time to shut down the synagogues and churches with the torah & bibles with Leviticus 18:22 and Deuteronomy 13:12-16. To see the religious lunatics manipulate government and peoples’ lives -- is shameful.

Many theologians state quite correctly that the birth; crucifixion; resurrection and other elements of christianity actually didn’t even happen! Churches are committing hate crimes and more succinctly a violent criminal offence against a federally protected minority namely the gay community. It is actually a bigger moment in history … gays standing up for equality ... the realization that there is something far more evil at work -- hateful religion which should be discharged from society – period.

Religion and the churches should now be exposed as a bigoted structure that gets away with hate mongering. It is a criminal offence to cause harm onto others physically or with written items; torahs – old testament/new testament bibles have been getting away with corruption and cultism based on bogus hocus pocus.

There is no scientific evidence to prove any of the cross related bogus elements of christianity and other religions. Our early human ancestors; on this earth … go back more than 6 million years … 5,996,000 years before the Greeks, Romans and the Jews. Christianity is basically a 2013 year old fictional cult. In the year 300 AD when Emperor Constantine, who to some was the first pope; went on to fabricate & market Christianity! Christianity is a fantasy; which turned out to be one of the most hateful & evil concoctions ever perpetrated on the world.

It is written; so therefore it shall be? We are the chosen people; such a wicked fantasy.

Einstein stated in a letter recently auctioned that the bible was a collection of primitive legends. He said believing in God was childish and he as a Jew is no different than another person and are not chosen by God.

The pope is running a bigger fraud than Madoff’s $50 billion ripoff.

Today’s evangelical extremists are like the nazis who cast others into ovens & are actually supremacists - who practice their bogus hocus pocus - and are trying to suppress and deprive others of their happiness and their legal rights in an open and proud society.

January 06, 2013 15:39
The Torah & the Bible; should be – banned ...!

1. Kill any friends or family that worship a god that is different than your own. Deuteronomy 13:6-10
2. Kill all the inhabitants of any city where you find people that worship differently than you. Deuteronomy 13:12-16
3. Kill everyone who has religious views that are different than your own. Deuteronomy 17:2-7.

About This Blog

Written by RFE/RL editors and correspondents, Transmission serves up news, comment, and the odd silly dictator story. While our primary concern is with foreign policy, Transmission is also a place for the ideas -- some serious, some irreverent -- that bubble up from our bureaus. The name recognizes RFE/RL's role as a surrogate broadcaster to places without free media. You can write us at

Most Popular

Editor's Picks