June 23, 2021 Philadelphia Gay News
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“Some current contents of the draft being debated by the Senate reduce the freedom granted to the Catholic Church,” the Vatican’s note said, according to the Corriere della Sera newspaper, which first reported the letter.
Germany, Netherlands, Sweden, France, Ireland and Belgium have expressed disapproval of the new Hungarian law that prohibits sharing with minors any content that promotes homosexuality or gender reassignment.
Hungary’s extremist right wing ruling party claims the law is an effort to fight pedophilia. Human rights groups say the law will stigmatize LGBT+ people and prevent youth from accessing critical information.
Germany’s Europe minister, Michael Roth, told reporters that Hungary and Poland were trampling freedoms in their countries. Sweden called the law “grotesque.”
“The European Union is not primarily a single market. We are a community of values, these values bind us all,” Roth told media.
“There should be absolutely no doubt that minorities, sexual minorities too, must be treated respectfully.”
Hungary’s foreign minister, Peter Szijjarto was quoted by Reuters saying the new law was meant to protect children. Szijjarto said the law grants “an exclusive right of the parents to educate their kids regarding sexual orientation until the age of 18.”
The condemnation from EU countries comes as the Union of European Football Associations (UEFA) declined Munich Mayor Dieter Reiter’s request on June 22 to allow the city’s stadium to display rainbow colors to protest Hungary’s law.
As PGN has previously reported, Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orban has insisted that he wants to “safeguard traditional Christian values” from what he calls “Western liberalism.”
Last summer Orban signed a law disallowing transgender and intersex people from changing their gender identities on legal and identifying documents. The Council of Europe Human Rights Commissioner Dunja Mijatovic described that law as a “blow to the human dignity of trans people.”
PGN has been reporting on the encroaching extremism in Poland and how the government of far-right president Andrzej Duda has used LGBT+ issues to stoke animus against the LGBT+ community and to promote his own restrictive “family values” policies. Duda declared “LGBT is not people, it’s an ideology” while also claiming that LGBT people are “even more destructive than communism.”
On June 19, in defiance of Duda, the largest gay pride parade in central Europe took place in Warsaw. The Equality Parade was the 20 year anniversary of the first such parade in the Polish capital.
Warsaw Mayor Rafal Trzaskowski walked at the head of the parade in a sign of support for LGBT+ rights. Ambassadors and other diplomats from 14 embassies in Warsaw also took part, including the U.S. charge d’affaires Bix Aliu, who tweeted “Let’s choose love not hate.”
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