Marat Qacem, a graduate of the Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia, a political analyst and expert on Russo-Latvian relations.
I happened to witness in live the preparations for many essential summits and festivals, including Universiade in Kazan and Winter Olympic Games in Sochi. But it’s the first time when I have to observe and discuss some events of a different sort. This concrete event called “EuroPride 2015” is to take place in Riga, the capital of my home country and so I don’t see how I can stay ignorant.
For the audience unaware of the details of this “western values’ triumph” (I hope most people belong to this very group) I’m going to give the gist of the issue. The so called “EuroPride” is actually one of the major festivities involving lesbians, gays, bisexuals and other transgender groups in Europe. This year Riga is hosting the event as the first former USSR city entrusted with it (previously it was Warsaw, the first ex-communist capital city).
The public opinion poll in Latvia revealed that only 2,5% citizens are supportive of the idea of EuroPride to be conducted in Riga. The composition of those supporters is no riddle, for they make 1%, which is right the approximate total number of lesbians and gays in this country.
The organizers of the EuroPride, LGBT and their friends’ association MOZAIKA, would come up with the traditional argument that the society has showed its attitude to the problem by the failed referendum to bar the underage from homosexual propaganda. They would point to the failure of the organization “Let’s defend our children” to get enough signatures for the bill to be passed into the parliament. My objection to it is that this is due to number of reasons actually: notorious personality of Bolshevik-nationalist Vladimir Linderman who acted as one of the referendum organizers, indifference to any initiatives on part of the Latvian social society lacking interest in political matters, and, most importantly, inability of non-citizens to put their signatures under the proposed bill at all.
The public opinion poll under the present circumstances is far more unbiased analysis of the populace positions, for it is not related to any necessity to visit a notary, pay state duty and possess a passport.
So, who’s actually keen on having this all-European gay parade?
The following conspicuous quotation from the USA Latvian embassy declaration actually prompts the answer:
“The USA Embassy is staying fully supportive of the LGBT rights as well as all the other people’s rights through exercising the programs of public diplomacy and regular cooperation with the state officials and the society. United States Secretary of State John Kerry notes that defense of LGBT community’s rights is an integral part of the global defense of human rights”.
The embassy also made it known that USA officials would take part in the conference to be held in the wake of EuroPride events, as well as in the LGBT march.
No comments, so to say.
Now, let’s remember another no less extravagant person directly linked to the pending sinful festival, and that is the head of the Latvian Foreign Ministry, that “proud gay” Edgar Rinkevich who made his coming out at the end of the last year.
Immediately, the minister was branded the first gay-politician in the history of Latvia, nominated for a title of “Man of Europe and Latvia” and generally he was considered just a brave guy.
Meanwhile, I had to upset Mr. Rinkevich. He is nether the first gay to occupy the minister position in Latvia, nor he is the first queer Foreign minister in this country.
It’s quite appropriate now to revoke the memory of 1936 and the head of the foreign agency Vilhelms Munters who was in sinful nexus with the then “father of the nation” Karlis Ulmanis.
The background of the ministry is rather a peculiar story, which is no wonder actually, for this is no secret that Latvian ministers both in the first period of independence and nowadays are actually American stooges, in particular, foreign ministers directly guided from overseas, from the country that many experts see as the true organizer of the parades and prides of all the sorts.
Strange at it might seem to you, the posture of Rinkevich is quite understandable. Moreover, it would be really strange if he acted somewhat differently, say, declared he’s for same-sex relations but against showing them off to escape radicalization of the society towards LGBT community. The minister long ago stopped being a diplomat. He has transformed into sort of a political show-man. He may skillfully demonstrate how happy he is over the ousting of the “New Wave” from Jurmala and then he may star as an arrogant politician comparing the neighboring country to the Third Reich. This kind of behavior is quite acceptable for him and I wouldn’t be surprised if one day he’ll use lipstick of bright color to join participants of the 20th July march, just in the forefront of it.
What’s really worrying in the context is the reaction of the conservative coalition partners of the “Unity” (for your information: “Unity” is the ruling political force represented by E. Rinkevich).
There’s also one more so called “tycoon”, a coalition partner and at the same time a major sponsor and permanent prime-minister candidate from the Union of Greens and Farmers, Aivars Lembergs, who is now staying with his lips tightly sealed. He has no distinct position on EuroPride, though he had braved taunting at the Foreign ministry head in mass media with the phrase, “I care a bit about the far reaching aims of Rinkevich when he uses his penis and his anus”. He also famously referred to the minister as just inept and defective. Still, he uttered no word on EuroPride.
Interestingly, a year ago or so in somewhat similar situation the Ventspils mayor Lembergs felt really offended by the brazen conduct of NATO seamen who urinated just in the streets of his city and pulled out flowers just from the flowerbeds for local ladies of the night. Lembergs didn’t bother to demonize as “occupants” those NATO sailors involved in violent incidents in Ventspils, and he went as far as to deliver the relevant message to the UN General Secretary.
But the might of NATO can’t par the strength of the world gay movement.
The nationalistic leader and an obvious follower of Ernst Roehm ideology, Raivis Dzintars, who’s recently renewed his parliamentary mandate after the parental leave, preferred just to distance himself from the events going on in Latvia where his newly born child will be growing up, as it is.
The coalition partners have not only failed to denounce same-sex oriented statements of the minister so much devoted to unilateral pro-American line and representing all their government, they also ignored the pending EuroPride in Riga, the subject relating the Latvian voters directly.
On the other hand, Latvia is now staying on the verge of electing a new president and a far right nationalist Egils Levits ardently urging on complete transfer of the national minorities’ schools to the Latvian state language may well occupy the presidential chair. He is going to start his presidential term just on the heels of the Riga LGBT event and amid the nearing expire date of the Latvian chairmanship in the Council of Europe, which has already resulted in some budget problems of the country.
So, why not start daily debating that already passed-by LGBT festivity, a climax of obscenities, instead of focusing on upcoming political and economic disaster?