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Madonna Won’t Perform in Russia Because of Country’s Homophobic Laws

The famous singer won’t support a country that won’t support its citizens.

Image via Wikimedia

A couple of weeks ago, a video circulated on the internet showing two men trying to hold hands in Moscow, Russia. Every few minutes or so, the men were assaulted—either with verbal violence or actual physical contact. Their experience might have seemed like an aberration, but discrimination is a daily part of life for many queer people in Russia. That’s why Madonna recently announced to Entertainment Weekly that she would no longer perform in Russia, citing the country’s harsh anti-gay laws.


LGBT Activists being attacked during 'Day of Kisses' in Russia, 2013. Image via Flickr user Roma Yandolin

In 2012, Madonna spoke up about the country’s anti-gay laws at a St. Petersburg concert. Shortly thereafter, the singer was sued, accused of violating the city’s law against gay propaganda. Nearly three years later, Madonna has refused to return to the country, arguing, ““I won’t appear in Moscow or St. Petersburg anymore, because I don’t want to perform in places where being homosexual is tantamount to a crime.”

Her argument isn’t hyperbole. While it’s not officially illegal to be gay in Russia, discrimination, violence, and murder are a familiar reality—and rarely does the government seek prosecution or redress. Gay propaganda laws make it illegal for adults to discuss LGBT issues with youth (even when the conversation is about health issues). Propaganda laws are often used liberally to protect—or even promote—harassment of LGBT citizens. Homosexuality not be illegal in law, but it’s illegal in practice.

Madonna may not be able to stop the tide of homophobia, but her stance sends a real message to a country that needs so many.

(Via: The Advocate)

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Anti-vaxxers are literally a plague upon society.

Thanks to them, highly contagious diseases such as measles, tuberculosis, and mumps are making a big comeback.

In fact, measles was thought to be eradicated in the US back in 2000 but there has been over 1200 cases in the U.S. this year.

via Centers for Disease Control

"The reason measles is coming back is that a critical number of parents have chosen not to vaccinate their children,'' said Paul Offit, director of the Vaccine Education Center at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, told USA Today.

"If you get to a few thousand cases, you'll start to see children die of measles again," Offit continued.

Ninety-two percent of U.S. children have received the MMR vaccine, while that number seems high, the number of children under two who haven't received any vaccinations has quadrupled in the last 17 years.

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"More and more we're seeing people opting out of vaccinations out of a feeling they're in some way dangerous, which is absolutely and completely untrue,'' Judd Hultquist, assistant professor of infectious diseases at Northwestern University's Feinberg School of Medicine, told USA Today.

Anti-vaxxers' biggest fear is that vaccinations cause autism.

However, over 140 peer-reviewed articles published in specialized journals that document the lack of a correlation between autism and vaccines. Earlier this year, a study of over 650,000 children in Denmark found that the MMR vaccine didn't increase the risk of autism in children.

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The aptly-named anti-vaxxer group Crazymothers made an appeal to the media on Twitter asking to start referring to them as "Vaccine Risk Aware."

"Dear Media," the open letter read. "Please retire the use of the term 'Anti-vaxxer.' It is derogatory, inflammatory, and marginalizes both women and their experiences. It is dismissively simplistic, highly offensive and largely false. We politely request that you refer to us as the Vaccine Risk Aware."

This inspired a flood of people to respond with their own hilarious and sometimes morbid new names for anti-vaxxers.

The tweet also inspired others to tee off on the Crazymothers for hurting children.


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