Pop entertainer Madonna has been ordered to appear in a Russian court on charges of violating the St. Petersburg law against “gay propaganda.”
According to the news website Russia Today, anti-gay activists sent a legal summons to Madonna’s home address in New York.
Russia Today said:
The pro-Kremlin group Trade Union of Russian Citizens wants the Material Girl in court for blasphemy and for damaging the cultural foundations of St. Petersburg. Nine activists filed a suit against the pop star after her concert on August 9. They are seeking 333 million rubles (around US$10 million) from Madonna and from the company that organized her show.
All the fuss is because of Madonna’s actions on the stage. The pop diva started her show asking fans to raise their hands with pink bracelets, which they were given on the entrance, in support of homosexual rights.
It is, however, illegal to promote homosexuality in St. Petersburg. The local law, which bans so-called “propaganda of sodomy, lesbianism, bisexualism and transgenderism, and pedophilia to minors,” was passed in March this year..
The case was brought by anti-homosexuality activists. Legal proceedings began Oct. 11, when the court began reviewing the case to determine whether a trial should be held.
The case was dismissed in November.
During her concert in early August, Madonna criticized the “gay propaganda” law and told fans that homosexuals should be treated with dignity and have the same rights as heterosexuals. Russia Today stated:
There are some details [of the charges against Madonna] which may weaken the activists’ position in court.
First, all tickets contained a recommendation saying that only over-18s should attend the concert. In such a case, parents of minors are responsible for allowing them to be there and seeing what they saw.
Second, there is video evidence which, however, was shot without any official permission, itself a violation.