There’s a remarkable piece on Comment is Free by Putin’s Propagandist in Chief: Dmitri Kisilev. Kisilev is the Deputy General Director of the Russian State Television and Radio Broadcasting Company.
It contains this gem:
Russian journalists are free to tackle difficult issues in their reporting without fear of government sanction. To take one such issue, unlike in Great Britain or the US, gay men in Russia are not prohibited from donating blood or organs, a heart, for example. In the US, any man who has had sex with another man after 1977 is banned for life from donating blood. The UK recently relaxed its rules, requiring that at least a year pass after the last contact with another man, but continues to bar homosexuals from being donors. Gay men who die in accidents cannot donate organs, and their bodies are buried or cremated along with their perfectly healthy hearts.
Personally, I believe the US and the UK have the right policy, and I have discussed this at length on the air. My opponents have called me a homophobe and used their freedom of speech to wage a war of words against me. But Russian journalists are free to comment on this or any other issue, from events in Ukraine to problems in Russia and the world. There are no government sanctions restricting freedom of speech or freedom of movement in my country.
This might be true, I suppose – if you exclude “killing journalists with polonium” from the definition of “restricting freedom of speech”.
But I think it is important to note precisely what Kisilev’s position is on gay organ donation.
I think that just imposing fines on gays for homosexual propaganda among teenagers is not enough. They should be banned from donating blood, sperm. And their hearts, in case of the automobile accident, should be buried in the ground or burned as unsuitable for the continuation of life.
Give this man a Guardian column, pronto!
Alec adds: HP regulars should remember a spate of supposedly British posters with, to be honest, extremely oddly chosen Anglo names, and who clearly did not have English as their first language; instead writing with an Urdu-like cadence. Like the general slickness of Russia Today in contrast with the likes of PressTV, I would say the former is more discerning in its linguists.
One contributor to Gay-Finder General, Kisilev’s thread is the eager Caroline Louise who appeared fully-formed at about the time of the Crimea annexation, and has been posting constantly on related threads with a firmly pro-Kremlin line. For whatever reason, her profile pic has been cropped to conceal her lovely shirt.