In recent months Russia has unleashed a series of anti-gay laws meant to suppress the LGBT community. Among other things it has banned gay gatherings, and is now promising to arrest gay athletes and tourists during the Sochi 2014 Olympics. The draconian laws appear to have spurred on neo-Nazi groups who are now terrorizing and torturing teens.
As a result of the crackdown, Poland’s Eurovision 2010 contestant Marcin Mrozinski has decided to pull out of the Pirogovsky Rassvet music festival. Here’s what he posted on Facebook:
I got so many questions about being disqualified in the international festival “Pirogovsky Rassvet” which is taking place in few days in Russia. I think I owe you few words of explanation. For more than 50 days you were supporting me with your votes on the web site and I want to thank you for that. Unfortunaletely, I had to resign from going to Russia. I do it as a protest for the new law which was enforced some time ago in Russia. This law is restricting the right for freedom to sexual minorities. I think that it’s unacceptable that in the XXI century someone restricts freedom of others.
I cannot imagine myself taking a part in a festival in a country where it’s leaded any kind of segregation: because of religion, race or sexuality. We are free and it should be our law. Freedom should be a normality. We should not have to fight for it.
Maybe nobody will hear my protest, maybe no one will see my absence on a festival, but it would be a hypocrisy to sing about love and freedom and enjoying those 5 days in the country where the human rights are not respected.
I was inspired by Loreen. She is always talking with a language of freedom and love. She is not scared to talk about intolerance even she could lose her contracts and not being invited for some events. She is not scared about gossips. She is an Artist and that helps her to be heard by more people. She might help people to understand how dangerous is to be quiet and agree on reclaiming the freedom. Lots of eurovision fans are gays and lesbians. As a polish representative in ESC 2010 I cannot pass over case of freedom. I am sorry, but in this situation I cannot represent Poland on “Pirogovsky Rassvet” in Russia.
Thanks for your understanding,
Loreen previously pledged to support Pussy Riot in its quest for justice in Russia.
Photo: Eurovision.tv (EBU)