Homosexuality and Russia

The USA - the World’s Newest USSR?


Paul Cameron: Russia’s is the West’s last hope


M o s c o w -- Will Russians and (right-wing) North Americans be joining forces to liberate the West anew from the monster of fascism? The anti-gay activist Scott Lively conjured up that scenario in an open letter to Vladimir Putin on 30 August: “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.”


He supplemented that in a commentary on his website four days later: “As the United States and the United Kingdom morph slowly into a gay version of the Soviet Union, an unlikely hero of family values has emerged: Russian President Vladimir Putin. In a stunning reversal of roles, . . . the former Communist slave state is becoming a beacon of freedom to those who love God‘s design for the family.” And further: “How incredibly ironic it is, that Russia is now our best hope for stopping the conquest of the world by the ‘progressives’.”


On 17 October during a visit to Moscow, Rev. Lively, a pastor among the needy in Springfield/Massachusetts, appeared on the television show of Archpriest Dimitry Smirnov, head of the Moscow Patriarchy’s commission on the family. Lively claimed thereby that “the Americans and the Soviets both won and both lost the Cold War. The Americans broke the Soviet system through economic strategies and tactics. But before they collapsed, the Soviets poisoned the United States with Cultural Marxism, promoting moral degeneracy and family breakdown through so-called ‘progressive’ ideology. Today, post-Soviet Russia is re-emerging as a Christian nation while the United States is becoming a ‘Gay Soviet Union’.”


Lively reports on his website that Archpriest Smirnov has promised to aid him in publishing the fifth edition of “The Pink Swastika” in Russian. It describes Lively’s thesis that Nazism spawned the present-day pro-gay movement. Some critics claim the book denies the Holocaust.


Nebraska’s Professor Paul Cameron spoke briefly at Moscow’s largest Protestant congregation, the 4.000-member, Charismatic congregation of Mats Ola Ishoel, on 27 October. He assured: “We and the entire West need your help. Our own foolishness, our own lack of commitment to God, has put us in a terrible situation. Our institutions are being ground to dust under an onslaught from the homosexual community and those who support them. . . . You are the last hope of the West. If you cannot stop this onslaught, then you and your children will fall under the heels of this, just as we have.  I said that you have shaken the world before, and I ask you as a powerful people to help the West stop this thing. I am here to speak to your Duma and to see if we can get them to do what needs to be done.“


Following the Duma appearance the next day, Cameron spoke at a press conference organised by the newspaper “Moskovsky Komsomolets” and moderated by Sergey Ryakhovsky, head bishop of Russia’s largest Protestant union, the 400.000-member “Associated Russian Union of Christians of Evangelical-Pentecostal Faith” (ROSKhVE).


Scott Lively reports that he toured 50 Russian cities during 2006 and 2007 and attributes the passing of legislation against the propagation of pro-gay positions in part to his own efforts. He calls this new law from June 2013 “one of the proudest achievements of my career”. Lively was in Moscow on 15 and 16 October 2013 to attend planning sessions for the Illinois-based, eighth “World Congress of Families”. Its eighth congress is scheduled for Moscow in September 2014. This event, which is to begin in the Kremlin before transferring to Russian Orthodoxy’s primary showplace, the “Cathedral of Christ the Saviour”, is expecting to attract as many as 5.000 participants.


Is an American war being transferred to distant shores? Stanford University’s Christopher Stroop, presently a lecturer at Moscow’s “Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration”, wrote on 30 October: “Cameron is among those made-in-America anti-LGBT activists who are exporting the US culture wars (their cause clearly losing at home) to countries where their prejudices are widely accepted, anti-LGBT discrimination is already enshrined into law or could be, and the potential harm from their violent rhetoric is that much greater.” After Lively’s visit to Uganda in 2009, the country nearly passed legislation decreeing the death sentence for “aggravated homosexuality”.


But Stroop assures that Vladimir Putin himself is no extremist: “Putin himself is most likely no true believer in the law (on pro-gay propaganda), but rather pragmatically using widespread popular Russian homophobia in pursuit of specific domestic and foreign policy goals - to placate hard-line Orthodox believers and to keep the more radical, nationalist right at bay at home.”


Virtually the sole negative, Russian-language commentary on Cameron’s much-heralded visit appeared on the “snob.ru” website. The Journalist Karen Shainyan subtitled his article: “Paul Cameron came to Moscow as a scholar, psychologist and an expert on family matters, although he’s neither the first, nor the second, nor the third.” Critics point repeatedly to the weak academic credentials of most anti-gay activists. Cameron was expelled from the “American Psychological Association” in 1983 and has not been a practitioner of psychology since 1995. Shainyan labels Cameron a “marginal pseudo-scientist” and concludes: “All of his accomplishments are far removed from psychology or sociology and belong in the realm of politics and PR.” The deceased Holocaust historian Stephen Feinstein from the University of Minnesota labeled Lively’s “The Pink Swastika”, which originally appeared in 1995, "as correct as flat earth theory".


My commentary: Unfortunately, the evangelicals of the ex-USSR are far removed from formulating and expressing an intellectually-serious, non-ideological defence of traditional, heterosexual marriage. Internationally, support of defrocked professors and radical US-conservatives will only bring them embarrassment and ridicule, removing them even further from the goal of supporting traditional family values


Highly interesting is the convergence of Orthodox and Pentecostal forces on the issue of homosexuality. Lively, who describes himself as a friend of leading Orthodox personalities, is also a close associate of the ethnic Ukrainian Alexander Ledyaev, the Riga-based founder of the radical “New Generation” Charismatic church (see our release from 25 July 2011.)


William Yoder, Ph.D.

Moscow, 6 November 2013


Journalistic release #13-21. 1.016 words.