Russia advances bill to take kids away from gay parents

Homophobic Russian lawmakers have moved ahead with their threat to attempt to pass legislation taking children away from gay parents.

Ironically, if you can call it that, the Russian lawmakers are basing their latest attack on gay people on a debunked gay-parenting “study” from last year that attempted to bash gay parenting when in fact the study didn’t really look at any kids who were brought up by gay parents.

The study is referred to as the Regnerus study, and an internal audit of the study found its conclusions to be “bullsh*t.”


Russia, like many homophobic countries, is now taking its cues from America’s gay-hating religious right, which is known for using fake-science to promote its anti-gay agenda.

Even Russia’s state-sponsored media is suspicious of the Regenerus study:

The study by Regnerus, an associate professor at the University of Austin and a practicing Christian, has sparked vehement debate in the sociological community and was formally condemned by the American Sociological Association as invalid earlier this year. Zhuravlyov’s note makes no mention of the controversy, but claim Regnerus’ findings were corroborated by unspecified independent experts.

RIA-Novosti says roughly two three million gay Russians could lose their children if the legislation becomes law.  Won’t that be embarrassing for the International Olympic Committee if the Russians start ethnically cleansing gay families right before the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Russia.  Then again, the IOC was okay with Hitler.

And yes, that Nazi analogy, sadly, becomes more just every day.

UPDATE: Interestingly, though not surprisingly, fallen Russian gay activist Nikolai Alexeyev doesn’t think the bill will pass.  Which may very likely mean that it will in fact pass.

You see, you have to keep in mind that Alexeyev claimed last Saturday, on the Kremlin-propaganda-network RT (aka Russia Today), that the anti-gay propananda law would not actually be applied in practice.  In fact, the next day it was applied in practice against a 24 y.o. Russian.

Also keep in mind that Alexeyev just suffered a horrific anti-Semitic meltdown in which he retweeted comments calling OUT magazine a “jewish slut magazine that supports jews and their filthy faggotry propaganda,” and OUT’s editor a “jewish pig” and “israeli monkey” (not that it matters, the editor isn’t Jewish).  Alexeyev also repeatedly referred to Jews as “yids” and then “kikes,” in English and Russian, and worried that the “Jewish mafia” was trying to control the world.  Finally, Alexeyev repeatedly tweeted and commented on Facebook about his apparently belief that Jewish vodka is made from distilled sperm.

This is just a sampling of Alexeyev’s ongoing anti-semitic meltdown:







Also casting doubts on Alexeyev’s credibility, he today criticized gay writer Jamie Kirchick for hijacking an RT segment in which Kirchick was supposed to talk about Bradley (now Chelsea) Manning, but instead famously slipped on a pair of rainbow suspenders (illegal under Russia’s anti-gay propaganda law) and proceeded to berate the state-journalists for their complicity in Russia’s state-sponsored homophobia.  Kirchick’s brave and rather inspired move was roundly applauded by everyone except the Kremlin and its apologists, and now Nikolai Alexeyev.


It’s difficult to lie about Alexeyev’s anti-semitism when we all have the screen shots to prove it.  Interestingly, Alexeyev has yet to apologize for, or even explain, his rabid anti-semitic outbursts.  The best anyone can get is a flat denial that they even occurred.  Sadly, we all witnessed it live, and have the screen shots prove it.

So take anything Nikolai Alexeyev has to say in the future with a huge grain of salt. Or better yet, just ignore him.

Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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57 Responses to “Russia advances bill to take kids away from gay parents”

  1. Bill_Perdue says:


    The political situation is clear. Obama and his Democrat and Republican allies refused to repeal DOMA or pass ENDA for decades. Obama refuses to sign an administrative order to grant ENDA benefits to federally contracted workers.

    Obama and the Democrats and Republicans are the enemy. They bend a bit to fool those susceptible to being fools and to get their money but they do nothing fundamental to change things. DADT repeal was about Obama’s war plans and the Hate Crimes Law is a sick joke, It’s anemic and rarely used and has no provisions to jail those who call for violence.

  2. Bill_Perdue says:

    Obama following the initiative of the Supremes on marriage equality. He did not lead it, he obstructed it at every turn. Just as he’s obstructed ENDA passage at every turn.

  3. Bill_Perdue says:

    Wrong. Dead Wrong. I understand that your brain hurts. You perspective is not selfish, it’s limited by the fact that you’re a Democrat and that you put partisanship before the needs of the LGBT communities and working people.

  4. Bill_Perdue says:

    You’re talking like a Democrat. You folks are the next Whigs.

    Obama and his Democrat and Republican allies are the enemy.

  5. Badgerite says:

    So they plan to destroy these kids emotionally in order to ‘save’ them. Save them from what? Loving their parents?

  6. Badgerite says:

    I’m beginning to believe Mother Russia doesn’t do ‘bright and new’.

  7. I think the point was rather clear: America bad.

  8. The net is brimming with literal horror stories about conditions in
    Russian orphanages and those in other former Soviet states. Go read
    about the Romanian orphans who were kept in the dark, beaten, starved,
    and crammed into cages like factory farm animals, who spent their days
    rocking back and forth staring at nothing at all and occasionally
    slamming their heads into the walls of their prison.


  9. karmanot says:

    I find your comments interesting and valuable to the conversations here.

  10. Rob Dowdy says:

    I edited my original comment to make it more clear. Thanks for pointing that out.

  11. karmanot says:

    Thanks for clarifying ‘gays’—yes, things are getting better.

  12. Rob Dowdy says:

    You don’t think things are getting better for gays in the US at an increasing rate? As opposed to how much worse things are becoming for gays in Russia at an even quicker rate?

  13. karmanot says:

    “Things are getting better, faster in the US.” WTF?

  14. karmanot says:

    What shall we call them now: Rutzies? What does Godwin think?

  15. StraightGrandmother says:

    Mighty, thank you. I hadn’t seen that. And actually there is something in that video that probably nobody will notice, that is very helpful to me. I’ll be working on this and let you know.

  16. Rob Dowdy says:

    I’ve always wondered: if being gay is contagious and being exposed to it can flip some poor hetero’s switch, then why does the reverse not happen? I mean, gays are exposed to way more straights on a daily basis than vice versa, so why don’t they flip our switches?

    Is being gay just that much more awesome? We’re immune to catching straight but all we have to do is put on some glitter and assless chaps and march down the street and straight people will convert and gay marry en masse. Scary!

    Also, if being gay is a choice then why do the percentages hold up across time and geography? Why are there about as many gay people per capita in places where gay people can live happily and get married as there are in places where gay people are treated poorly or even executed? Why do people who hate gays seem to have the same number of gay children as people who don’t?

    Ah, so many questions that the bigots never choose to answer.

  17. Rob Dowdy says:

    “Raising”? Surely you misspoke. Only humans “raise” children.

    Surely you meant to say that these homosexual creatures, owing to their scientifically established innate depravity, are “debasing and corrupting children.”

    That is what you meant to say, is it not, comrade?

    Because if you did not wish to say that, I hear there is much work to occupy you in … northwest Siberia.

  18. Rob Dowdy says:

    You are conflating a few random acts of individual hatred in a population of over 300 million humans, which by its very nature will have some very awful specimens in it, to what is rapidly becoming systemic, top-down, state-sanctioned, gleefully institutionalized persecution.

    You are also saying that because Obama wasn’t with us all along, he can go straight to hell.

    How are either of those positions constructive or conducive to progress?

  19. Anonymous says:

    I’ve seen a documentary on these orphanages and it’s terrible. Denying Westerners and gay couples the ability to adopt them is tragic. I’ve heard many don’t survive to 30 in those conditions. They probably want the kids to die so they are less of a burden… :(

  20. Rob Dowdy says:

    Replying again, since you edited your post to add visual aids.

    So to be clear, you refuse to graciously accept Obama’s current support — his outspoken, extremely valuable support — and his work to extend federal benefits to as many same sex couples as possible.

    Rather than heap him with thanks and encouragement for coming around to the right way of thinking, though he took longer than he should have, you berate him for needing any time at all.

    Because he once disagreed with you, none of the good he’s done since that point can ever satisfy you.

    Wow. That’s just the sort of thinking that will get people to change their minds and support us! “I was wrong,” they say, “and now I want to do what I can to make up for it. How can I help?” To which we reply, disdainfully, “To hell with you. You hurt my feelings once and now I hate you forever.”

  21. StraightGrandmother says:

    Rob I watched the video. Oh.My.God
    I hate that Goddamned Country. Just HATE RUSSIA.

  22. Rob Dowdy says:

    Conditions in Russia grow more perilous every day, first for gays and now even for their children and families. Violence and disdain are acceptable and encouraged. Rage and overt disgust are the norm in Russia. It’s snowballing toward something truly awful and frightening.

    Putin’s government allies call for homosexuals to be treated like pariahs, subhumans; for their children to be taken away “for their own good,” for people participating in gay pride parades to enjoy their lack of police protection as religious leaders whip crowds into violent mobs; for young boys to be tortured on video without any legal consequences for the perpetrators, without any justice for the victims. Each day is awful and each tomorrow looks worse.

    Meanwhile, the Obama administration is trying to extend federal benefits to as many of us as he can, legally. We are able to marry in many states and have those marriages recognized, finally, by the government to which we pay taxes. Each day brings new good news (NM, PA, Ohio, etc.). The poll numbers keep going in our favor: more and more people in the US believe we should be accorded the same rights and respect as anyone else. Tomorrow looks brighter than today.

    You are saying that “some people” with rapidly decreasing power and reach in the US feel the same way as does almost everyone in power in Russia. The power of hate in the US is waning even as it waxes toward a bloody full moon in Russia.

    How, how, how can you possibly find any equivalence in those circumstances?

    Seriously, how? It boggles the mind, even trying to understand your though process.

  23. Rob Dowdy says:

    Deleted: Replied to wrong person …

  24. Rob Dowdy says:


  25. Rob Dowdy says:

    This comment is a textbook illustration of the logical fallacy of false equivalence.

    What is currently happening in Russia, the laws that are being proposed in Russia, the prevailing sentiment, all of it: nothing at all like what is currently happening in the US.

    The present arc in the US is toward far less of this kind of behavior and this sort of thinking. The plight of GLBT people in the US is actively improving at a rate many who remember what it was like 20-30 years ago find absolutely breathtaking and awe-inspiring.

    The literal opposite thing is currently happening at an accelerated, nearly hysterical rate in Russia.

    US: Drastic, continuing improvement.
    Russia: A frightening spiral into hatred and oppression and increasing violence.

    Not. Remotely. The. Same. Thing.

  26. Bill_Perdue says:

    The Russian bill is similar to laws in the US and to actions by right wingers in the US. Both nations are dominated by regimes composed of bigots and those who pander to bigots.

    The Obama regime is as right wing as the Clinton and Bush regimes and so is the Putin regime.

  27. Rob Dowdy says:

    There are no doubt those who will tsk-tsk about these poor children and think, “Well, maybe they will be better off in an orphanage than with those deviant homosexuals. Maybe they’ll have a chance to find a normal family this way.”

    We’ve certainly heard that argued, even recently, in the US in those states where adoption by gays is illegal or where that illegality has been challenged in court. That’s a whole other argument, (and doesn’t address snatching children out of homes as this law would do), but one thing to be very damn clear about is this: orphanages in Russia and orphanages in the US are not the same animal.

    Go watch all six minutes and twenty-two seconds of this, if you can, and get back to me.

    The net is brimming with literal horror stories about conditions in Russian orphanages and those in other former Soviet states. Go read about the Romanian orphans who were kept in the dark, beaten, starved, and crammed into cages like factory farm animals, who spent their days rocking back and forth staring at nothing at all and occasionally slamming their heads into the walls of their prison.

    Russia had an opportunity nearly 25 years ago to rise from the ashes of the USSR to become something bright and new in the world.

    Looks like they blew it.

  28. Strepsi says:

    Given that John is clearly against the bad things that happen here AS WELL AS the bad things that happen there, you don’t seem to have one.

  29. I don’t know about Dan, but I do know that regardless of how Dan was doing he didn’t undercut the movement, he actually moved it forward. And I agree, the response to Alexeyev’s abhorrent behavior is far too muted. He’s no longer credible, whatever reason fr ha recent bizarre behavior.

  30. FLL says:

    (1) The bill currently being proposed in the Russian legislature has nothing to do with banning adoption by same-sex couples because adoption by same-sex couples is already illegal in Russia. So a discussion of bans on adoption by same-sex couples by one or more U.S. states is irrelevant to the current Russian bill.

    (2) The bill being proposed in the Russian legislature also has nothing to do with custody battles between husbands and wives. Those kinds of cases in family law occur as the result of divorce. The Russian bill is not a bill that requires any divorce proceedings in order to take effect.

    The Russian bill currently being proposed would take children away from their legal parent, either adoptive or biological, on the basis of their actual or presumed sexual orientation. Discussing situations (1) and (2) above avoids admitting the actual nature of the current bill in the Russian legislature. You might claim that the situations described in (1) and (2) occurred relatively recently in the U.S., but American states have not recently forcibly removed children from a parent (absent clear evidence of abuse) where there is no custody battle in progress between the two parents. The Russian law seeks to remove children from parents on a large scale and place them in state institutions, something never contemplated during the era of homophobic family law rulings during the 1970s through the early 2000s.

    And now, John, a question for you specifically. Now that the Russian law allowing the state to essentially kidnap large numbers of children from their gay parents is coming closer to reality, is their anyone who can bring influence to bear on the members of the IOC, who are meeting in Buenos Aires starting next week to choose a new president and the site of the 2020 Olympics? Is the Argentine LGBT community involved? Clearly, the meeting in Buenos Aires will determine the success or failure of quite a lot.

  31. pliny says:

    “Generally speaking, genocide does not necessarily mean the immediate
    destruction of a nation, except when accomplished by mass killings of
    all members of a nation. It is intended rather to signify a coordinated
    plan of different actions aiming at the destruction of essential
    foundations of the life of national groups, with the aim of annihilating
    the groups themselves. The objectives of such a plan would be the
    disintegration of the political and social institutions, of culture,
    language, national feelings, religion, and the economic existence of
    national groups, and the destruction of the personal security, liberty,
    health, dignity, and even the lives of the individuals belonging to such
    groups.” – Lemkin

  32. Bill_Perdue says:

    My comment is about how to fight the Putin regime and their American collaborators as allies of our Russian communities, while leaving the initiative of how to react in Russia to them.

    The proposal I made is based the organization and perspective that built the antiwar movement that sent Nixon and his admirals and generals advancing rearward form Vietnam to Hawaii and San Diego, ears down and tails between their legs.

    It’s an approach that works.

    The paragraph about American bigots speaks for itself and is another good reason the movement should keep Democrat and Republican politicians as allies, on those rare occasions when they are, and never as advisers or self appointed leaders.

  33. Anonymous says:

    Isn’t Dan Choi also mentally ill? I feel like most of the sympathy comes out of realizing that he is unstable. People are making excuses saying he is “stressed” and wouldn’t act like this normally.

  34. Ok. But I’m still not sure how your comment is relevant to a discussion of Russia’s extreme and dangerous homophobia.

  35. No, I think I disproved your point. Way to deflect :) You seemed to making an equivalence. If not, what was your point, that America isn’t perfect? Yes. And?

  36. He was considered Russia’s top and most important activist until his meltdown these past two weeks. We’re not ignoring him if he sticks his nose in the middle of this in a seeming effort to cause more problems. Dan Choi already exonerated him today from any charges of anti-semitism, which is beyond bizarre since Alexeyev hasn’t even acknowledged what he did, let alone explained it or apologized. I’m not sure how you explain that the word “kike” isn’t anti-semitic. So, sorry, but every time he sticks his head up, he’s going to get called on his instability and his bigotry. He was far too important a voice and can cause a lot of damage if people aren’t reminded what he’s turned into. Who do you think the foreign media always quoted up until now?

  37. BeccaM says:

    Oops, looks like we hit the same Bilerico link. I made a few remarks above regarding it as well.

  38. BeccaM says:

    I think I’m beyond the noun labels at this point and well into adjectives: Horrible. Abominable. Insufferable. Repressive and oppressive. Evil.

  39. BeccaM says:

    I saw. Big surprise. He seems to be determine to prove he’s been co-opted with every statement and Tweet.

  40. BeccaM says:

    Oh hellfire… And the concern trolls kept telling us there was nothing to worry about, the Russians would never head down this road.

    Aye, Alexeyev is now proving himself ever more irrelevant and indeed an increasing hindrance to LGBT rights in Russia. The same idiot who was proven wrong within 24 hours when he insisted that the anti-gay progrom-enabling propaganda law wouldn’t be used to prosecute anybody. We’re supposed to believe his prognostigatory powers on the Russian Duma? On what exactly does he base his certainty they won’t pass this bill?

    Anyway, there’s some fantastic additional reporting over on Bilerico

    John Becker brings in the fact the Russian legislator, Alexei Zhuravlev, has been citing the much discredited Regnerus study as justification.

    Of the junk Regnerus study, Zhuravlev writes, “The results of this research have been carefully verified by independent experts and do not provoke any doubts.”

    The bill also apparently empowers the Russian version of the FBI to investigate instances of “suspected homosexuality.”

  41. Bill_Perdue says:

    I agree we should do something about it and that is to build a democratically run nationwide group with an elected leadership to aid our communities in Russia, independent of the twin political parties and with a perspective of building big demonstrations and organizing boycott and divestment efforts with all the main collaborators like NBC-Comcast-MSNBC, the IOC itself, Coke and the others.

    There have been kidnapping murders here – I found one in Kentucky, one in Mississippi and one in New York city in the last 3 years. It’s true that Clinton, Bush and Obama didn’t organize or permit them but each of them promoted them by opposing marriage equality for decades. Clinton with DOMA, which he stole from the Republicans and exhaustively promoted, Bush with 31 state DOMAs and Obama with years of opposition to marriage, culminating in his promotion of Prop 8 with his widely broadcast bigoted view that ‘gawd’s in the mix’.

  42. Bill_Perdue says:

    Not just the religious right, but the politicians who pander to them.

  43. Bill_Perdue says:

    This is another big step backward.

    The Florida ban on LGBT adoptions was passed in the late 1970’s and not repealed until 2010. And not so long ago, 1994, a lesbian mother won a court case to get her child returned.

  44. emjayay says:

    I doubt that anyone anywhere is paying any attention tho this
    Alexeyev guy anymore other than other nutjobs. I do keep wondering anyway how the claim with video about the government ransacking his apartment and taking his computers or whatever fits in.

  45. JozefAL says:

    Yeah, except for a little bit the Advocate covered. (

    This has to do with pole vaulter Yelena Isinbayeva’s response to a question she was asked about the “propaganda” law: “If we allow to promote and do all this stuff on the street, we are very afraid about our nation because we consider ourselves like normal, standard people. We just live with boys with woman, woman with boys.” (Note: The quote is presented as in the Advocate’s coverage. I don’t know if the odd singular “woman” and plural “boys” is the result of a typo or a mistranslation or a mistransliteration but, for some reason, I don’t think the Russian government would be all that supportive of the obviously non-traditional arrangement of 1 woman with multiple male partners. The same caveat applies to the odd intermingling of “woman” and “boys.”)
    Now, bear in mind that the IOC is actually suggesting that she COULD lose her (honorary) title as Mayor of the Olympic Village for this comment, yet they’ve already gone on record threatening to punish any athlete who makes any effort to “protest” the laws. LGBT and supportive athletes have already been warned against wearing any rainbow pins or badges (or fingernail polish)–that such displays could lead to being suspended from the games, having medals stripped, etc. And the IOC has also warned against any displays of same-sex affections; a winning gay skater can’t be kissed by his husband, a losing lesbian skier can’t be consoled by her wife–even the idea of being congratulated or consoled by a same-sex relative or coach is currently being considered as potentially actionable by the IOC. But, the IOC is, at this point, only saying she COULD lose the title. I’m betting that the IOC won’t do shit to her. They’ll accept her “apology” and her “promise” that she’ll uphold all the ideals of the Olympics.

  46. Stev84 says:

    Way to miss the point.

  47. I just updated the story. Guess who’s pushing the Kremlin line on this?

  48. When was the last time an American president permitted lynch mobs to roam the country and freely abduct minorities? The case against Russia is a totality, it’s not just based on one story. The situation in Russia is rather horrific, and rather than argue that they get their chance to be hateful bigots too, perhaps we should do something about it. I didn’t see a lot of people arguing that South AFrica didn’t get a chance to be as hateful as the south.

  49. Anonymous says:

    The religious right in the US are almost as bad as Russian leaders. This fact is painfully obvious. The difference is that we fight to take away their power in the US.

  50. Stev84 says:

    Don’t be so quick to get on a high horse by the way. Before anti-sodomy laws were declared unconstitutional only 10 years ago, American courts routinely awarded custody to the straight parent (or other relatives), even if they were abusive.

    There is the case Bottoms v. Bottoms were the Virginia Supreme Court took away a lesbian’s child. In lower court she was interrogated about her sex life in great detail and lost her child because she had oral sex.

    In 2002(!) infamous Christian Taliban judge Roy Moore of Alabama voted to take away another lesbian’s child and went out of his way to declare that the state has the right to execute her for being gay.

    Even today there are courts that prevent an unmarried same-sex partner from moving in with someone who shares custody of their children with someone else. It’s the same for straight people, but those can get married.

  51. Anonymous says:

    Let’s call it what it is: fascism. Even if there wasn’t a study, they wouldn’t need one. It wouldn’t matter, because they don’t have to answer to real scientists anyway. It’s time to stop saying we “disagree” with them and instead say we are disgusted with them. This isn’t a debate anymore.

  52. karmanot says:

    You are doing great work on this SG. why not put it altogether and submit it to John and staff for possible publishing here on AB.

  53. karmanot says:

    “yes, that Nazi analogy, sadly, becomes more just every day” Bingo!

  54. ARP says:

    Pay no attention to the corruption, power grabbing, and support for a dictator (likely) gassing his own people. Look at those icky gay people raising kids!

  55. Kevin Johnston says:

    I had a very bad feeling that it would come to this. The IOC needs to pull the Sochi Games NOW.

  56. StraightGrandmother says:

    the Russians are Relying on #REGNERUS.

    Read this other story as well which reveals also the basis that they are making the law is #REGNERUS

    I am heartbroken as I have been tracking this since day -1 of the publication of that defective study.

    Please e-mail the following People at the American Sociological Association
    and LGBT Sociology Scholars and demand an ASA investigation of this
    study. TWO Peer Reviewers were also PAID consultants on the study. Brad
    Wilcox as a peer reviewer was especially egregious as he was Director of
    the Witherspoon program who funded #Regnerus.

    don’t know what else to do but to ask you to join me in demanding an
    official American Sociological Association Investigation. PLEASE WRITE
    TO THESE PEOPLE, Ridgeway is President of the ASA, Erick Olin Wright,
    past President Sally Hillman Executive Director Wending Manning did the
    research they used in their Amicus Brief.

    Cecilia Ridgeway ,
    Erik Olin Wright ,
    Wendy Diane Manning ,
    “Sally T. Hillsman” ,
    [email protected],
    Simon Cheng ,
    Philip Cohen ,
    Andrew Perrin ,
    “Gates, Gary” ,
    Darren Sherkat

    God Help us All for allowing this to happen in Russia. It is the defective
    research of Mark Regnerus that is driving this world wide. PLEASE E-Mail
    & Call That is Brian Powell in Indiana All Sociologists except for
    Gary gates of the Williams Institute

    Listen, I can’t do it all I am older. I have posted to Becca asking her to please investigate because I think Regnerus misused his Witherspoon Grant money and diverted it for use on his new book. He filed Payment Vouchers requests asking the University of Texas for various people to get paid because they worked on the New Family Structures Study. I don’t think they did. I looked at the records carefully and I am 99% sure the people worked on his book. It is against all school ethics to falsify Grant money payments.

    I need help! Who is willing to help get this study retracted?

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