ST. PETERSBURG, November 22 – RAPSI. US pop star Madonna did not break law on the promotion of a homosexual lifestyle among minors during her concert in St. Petersburg earlier this year, a court ruled on Thursday.
“Madonna’s actions were planned and aimed at the formation of a distorted view of personal relations,” read the lawsuit, which was dismissed after a six-hour-long hearing by the St. Petersburg court.
The nine plaintiffs were claiming over $10 million in compensation for “moral damages” suffered during Madonna’s show in August, during which the star handed out pink bracelets to the crowd in a show of unity with the city’s gay and lesbian community.
The organizers of the concert had stated that entry to the concert would be barred to anyone under 18 years of age.
The authorities had earlier refused to open a criminal investigation into the allegations.
"The law was brutally violated and in the coming years it'd be a common practice," plaintiff Marianna Yakovleva told the court. “We have set a precedent for the artists to take into account the fact that the law prevails in our city.”
The plaintiffs also said Madonna’s “gay propaganda” would lead to a deterioration of Russia’s demographic crisis and its subsequent inability to man its army. They also said her promotion of homosexuality would lead to an increase in divorce rates.
The most outspoken of the claimants' representatives, avid Stalinist Daria Dedova, argued in a variety of ways that she doesn't hate gay people just for being gay; rather she passionately opposes the exposure of children to the perception of homosexuality as normal.
The judge showed a healthy amount of skepticism throughout the course of the day with regard to the amount of money the claimants were asking for. He was confused as well by their claims that children were hurt by Madonna's speech.
To address the latter issue, the aggrieved parties scoured the Internet for video proof, ultimately coming up with one singular clip showing a small child with his mother as Madonna delivered her speech.
The plaintiffs were backed by St. Petersburg lawmaker Vitaly Milonov, who authored the city’s gay propaganda law. The law, which was passed in March, criminalizes "public action aimed at propagandizing sodomy, lesbianism, bisexualism, and transgenderism among minors." Those charged with breaking the law face fines from 5,000 to 500,000 rubles.
Please find the full text coverage of the hearing here.