Russian Bloggers are calling today's supposed announcement by the country’s leading political party that is launching a “heterosexual flag” to honor traditional family values bogus.
The announcement was reported in today’s edition of the Izvestia newspaper.
An article claimed Andrei Lisovenko, deputy head of the Moscow branch of United Russia, the country's ruling political party, had shown reporters the flag which features the outlines of a woman and man holding hands with three children. The flag also displays the Russian-language hashtag “A Real Family”.
Lisovenko is reported as saying the flag would be officially unveiled at Moscow's Sokolniki park as part of a United Russia's Day of Family, Love and Fidelity.
If there is in fact an official Russian Government sponsored “heterosexual flag”, its unveiling comes on the heels of the recent ruling by the U.S. Supreme Court which legalized same-sex marriage. The White House honored the decision by being bathed in lights showing the colors of the LGBT community’s rainbow flag symbol.
“This is our response to same-sex marriage, to this mockery of the concept of the family. We have to warn against gay-fever at home and support traditional values in our country,” Lisovenko is reported to have said.
Although homosexuality is not illegal in Russia, a June 2013 law bans promotion of "nontraditional" sexual relations to minors. A poll published in May by the Levada Center showed 37 percent of Russians think homosexuality is a disease which needs to be cured.
After news broke of the heterosexual flag's design, Russia's microblogging site RIP Novosti questioned the flag's originality.
On its Twitter account it posted a photo of a similar flag bearing the symbol of France's anti-gay marriage movement La Manif Pour Tous.
The Day of Family, Love and Fidelity was introduced in 2008. Four Russian regions — Amur, Tula, Kurban and Kaluga have banned divorce proceedings on the day.