American anti-gay activist Scott Lively, who faces charges of hate crimes for his work on Uganda's "Kill the Gays" bill, has told Vladimir Putin that Russia's "gay propaganda" bill does not go far enough in addressing "the problem" of LGBTs.
In an open letter sent August 30, Lively praised the Russian president for setting "an example of moral leadership that has shamed the governments of Western Europe and North America" with his campaign against LGBT people, but said "the battle to protect your society from homosexualization has only just begun."
As a long-time leader in the pro-family movement who toured your country in 2006 and 2007 advocating the very policy you have enacted, I want to caution you not to assume that you have fully solved the problem by the enactment of this law....Few political agendas in the history of mankind have marshaled the tenacity and resolve of the homosexualist movement. Its activists are driven by an implacable militancy and a zeal to advance their own self-serving interests that rivals even the most fanatical religious cults.... Perhaps through the inspiration of your leadership, an alliance of the good people of our countries with those of your own, can once again in some cooperative fashion, redeem the future of mankind from a Fascist Leviathan, just as we did in World War II.
Lively first gained an international platform with the book The Pink Swastika: Homosexuality in the Nazi Party, a widely discredited work that alleges a cabal of gay men close to Adolf Hitler masterminded the Holocaust. His message found special resonance among religious conservatives from Eastern Europe, for whom World War II is a not-too-distant memory.
Appealing to the collective Russian memory of fighting the Germans in World War II, Lively seems eager to hand Putin more ammunition by invoking arguments from his book laying blame for the Holocaust on gay men.
In the coming months and years Russia and Her people will be increasingly portrayed by emotion laden and abusive hyperbole as bigoted haters, intent on exterminating homosexuals. Indeed, the propaganda campaign on that theme has already been initiated, with video footage purporting to show Russian neo-Nazis beating homosexuals now being circulated on the Internet, along with the false implication that this is the intent of your policy.... Indeed, this "gay" narrative that equates opposition to homosexuality with Nazi-like genocide is in part an attempt to obscure the ugly roots of the modern homosexualist movement in pre-Nazi Germany.... German fascism was formed and facilitated by masculine-oriented male homosexuals in response to an effeminate model of homosexuality which held that all homosexualist men were actually female souls trapped in men's bodies.
J. Lester Feder is a BuzzFeed contributor and 2013 Alicia Patterson journalism fellow.