Madonna has vowed to defy St.
Petersburg's recently enacted gay propaganda law when she performs in
the city this summer, Bloomberg
“I will come to St. Petersburg to
speak up for the gay community and to give strength and inspiration
to anyone who is or feels oppressed,” she said in an email. “I'm
a freedom fighter.”
The law, which took effect last week,
criminalizes “public actions aimed at propaganda of pederasty,
lesbianism, bisexuality and transgenderism among minors.”
Offenders face a fine of up to $16,700
under the law first proposed by the dominant United Russia party.
The law effectively outlaws Gay Pride
parades and gay rights demonstrations.
“I don't run away from adversity,”
Madonna added. “I will speak during my show about this ridiculous
Supporters of the law say it is
necessary to protect children and are lobbying for a nationwide ban.
The law's passage has prompted calls
for tourists to boycott the city, Russia's top travel destination.
“There's lots of criticism from the
media community about this law, but somehow most of the media forget
about this crucial word – minors,” Vladimir Vigilyansky of the
Russian Orthodox Church, the nation's dominant religious body, told
about propaganda among minors, not about banning homosexuality
Lady Gaga duet? Madonna says, “Never say never.”)