Religious activists from the Russian city of Saratov have demanded Facebook be banned in the country over “gay propaganda” among minors.
The scandal erupted earlier this month after the popular social networking website introduced same-sex marriage status icons: one depicting two brides, the other two grooms. Such icons add automatically when a Facebook user marks a person of the same sex as husband or wife.
In response an Orthodox community in Saratov issued an ultimatum demanding that Facebook stopped “flirting with sodomites” and removed all content promoting homosexuality.
The activists sent a fax to the international network’s office in Russia and gave the company 24 hours to fulfill the demands. If Facebook does not comply, they threatened to sue internet service providers who give users access to Facebook content.
Since the ultimatum was ignored, the Saratov’s community began to collect signatures in support of returning a Soviet-era anti-gay article to the Penal Code. Activists say they've already managed to collect 34,000 signatures. The main goal is to collect one million signatures and then to submit an appeal to the State Duma.
Male homosexuality was a criminal offense in the Soviet Union, the respective article was canceled only in 1993.
Author: Julia Alieva