In a profile published Saturday in The New York Times, Russian gay activist Nikolai Alekseyev (sometimes spelled Alexeyev) blamed apathy for the country's persistent homophobia.

Alekseyev is the founder of Moscow Pride, an annual Gay Pride march which has been brutally suppressed by authorities and attacked by neo-Nazi thugs.

Last month's march, held outside the Kremlin, was over in a flash as authorities quickly rounded up its leaders – including two Americans, Lt. Dan Choi and Andy Thayer – and protesters yelling anti-gay slurs dispersed the rest.

Alekseyev, who after six years of protests and numerous media interviews has become the face of the gay rights movement in Russia, is given little credit for pushing the movement forward in Russia.

One transgender activist, Anna Komarova, calls Alekeyev challenging: “He is a complicated person and does not have a mild personality. But laid-back people choose other occupations.”

And the paper introduces the activist by recounting his recent meltdown during a televised debate on gay rights. Alekseyev stormed off the stage after being attacked with anti-gay slurs and hostile remarks not only from his opponents but also from the debate's moderator.

“He is brash and provocative, even among would-be supporters,” the paper wrote. “He has berated journalists for coverage he disagrees with.”

Near the end of the piece, Alekseyev ostensibly blames the slow slog on gay rights and persistent homophobia in Russia on the gay community's apathy.

“What society wants is bread and spectacle, that's it,” he said. “I don't see any problem with people standing in lines outside gay clubs, but tell these people that they have to fight for their rights and they say, 'No way.'”