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Kyiv Equality March 2018: Clash of traditional and non-traditional values

Author : Zoya Shu

Source : 112 Ukraine

Traditional questions to participants of the "non-traditional" event and their opponents
09:20, 18 June 2018

Read the original text at 112.ua.  

 

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The representation of the March of equality and its opponents has not changed for many years. On the one hand, there are representatives of the LGBT movement and people who share and support the ideas of the March of equality (including from among heterosexuals). On the other hand, there are representatives of the far right and various religious organizations.

Each side has its own vision of "freedom" and "family values."

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"We will catch some of them. We have been instructed on this case," says an anonymous representative of the far right.

Related: Equality March in Kyiv: 57 people detained

According to him, initially they had to attack someone by the crowd, but later it was decided to mask (for example, to put on shirts, closing tattoos as much as possible) and to catch the marchers during the day. He said they had to pay attention to the habits and clothes of the "objects of study," although the anonymous man himself admitted that he also wore a pink T-shirt.

In general, opponents of the March of Equality refused to show their faces and gave a lot of counter-questions. And yet, the position of some was voiced.

These are the adherents of the ideas of Otto Ohlendorf (Gruppenführer SS, - ed.) Voron, Hans, and Shatun.

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"We think the publicity of what they are doing is wrong. They want to show that they are equal, but this is a deviation from the natural norms. They cannot give birth to the children."

Related: European Parliament calls on Ukrainian authorities to attend March of equality

Nadia, who is representing the opposite camp, also speaks about the children. She holds the flag "Give a hand to LGBT parents."

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"We are here, to protect the rights of our children," she briefly explains her presence at the event.

And these are the opponents of the march, Andriy and Volodymyr

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They briefly explain their presence on the march: "We are standing here to protect the common sense."

Related: Equality March in Odesa - attempts to sabotage

"Everyone is equal, and everyone has equal rights," Eleanora is sure.

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"My friends often suffer from discrimination: they can walk down the street, and some people come and hit them. This is wrong. Therefore, the March of equality is held, so that such people are treated like everyone else."

Anna and Tamara mention discrimination too. They joke:  "Where else two white heterosexual women can find their boyfriends?"

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"I believe people should express their civil position. Speaking about discrimination, woman's salary is lower," the girls say.

This is Denys.

Zoya Shu/112.ua

"I'm here to prevent this uncivilized program, it is a terrible example for children and teenagers. I was never discriminated against, but I still do not understand it. I do not care what they do, but I am against the public display."

Related: LGBT representatives attacked at Festival of Equality in Zaporizhya

The words "equal rights" and "freedom" sound as much as the word "discrimination".

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For example, Vadym shares his own experience. "This year, me and my husband we were beaten. I want the attitude of our state to change so that we have equal rights and there was less homophobia in our country."

Valya, Diana, and Igor talk about the desire for "complete freedom of law and choice."

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"Ordinary couples on the street can hug, but homosexuals cannot do it. We also experience some psychological pressure."

Related: Equality March 2017 in Kyiv: participants, protesters and police

Svitlana supports them:

"I came to support my friends and defend human rights, sometimes my friends used to attack and beat us."

"All people are equal and everyone has their own rights"

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Dasha, Diana, Semen, Tory, and Roman also talk about rights, freedom, and love.

"Everyone deserves to be what they want, and we do not want people to suffer. Love has no sex. "

"Violence is bad, many people have been attacked."

"Freedom will change this country. Freedom is to love openly, not to hide, you should not be beaten in the street for your views."

Related: 10 people suffered during March of Equality in Kyiv, 7 attacks reported

Yegor and Rina came to support the event:

"We came to support people, everyone should have equal rights and all have the right to love."

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"We came to show that even heterosexuals can support the LGBT community."

Another topic is "traditional family values." Here's what the participant of the march Vladimir says:

"I do not like speculation with the expression "traditional family values," because it is about love and respect, honesty and trust, mutual support, and a family of men and women is not a family value, but a composition of a family.

"I am lucky, I do not have problems at work, my friends are also tolerant."

"Some people protest against the march, but having some individual views and values does not mean that others should have the same views and values."

The representatives of the embassies of the EU countries also came to support the participants of the march. For example, representatives of the Swedish Embassy in Ukraine:

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"We are here to support equal rights and the LGBT community and their work in Ukraine. This is both a clear policy of our government and a personal position. As for those protesting against the equality march, I would like to ask them the question of how equal rights can threaten them."

Related: Sweden allocated 5 million euros for gender equality in Ukraine

One of the opponents of the march, Ilya, spoke about the protest.

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"Since we were planning to conduct a peaceful rally behind the fence, but at 6 am there was an order to oust us out of this place." (Some of the Equality March opponents spent the night at the place, where the gay pride had to be held in order to prevent it. They blocked the street, and the police arrested them. The first fight with the police at the intersection of Volodymyrska and Shevchenko boulevard was provoked by far right C-14 members, an organization closely linked with Ukraine's Security Service and financed from the Ukrainian budget. Later C14 members have blocked the road in Lukyanivka district of Kyiv, as the police brought the detainees there.– Ed.)

"It is very sad that these people do not defend the family as an institution. There is no future without mother and father."

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As was reported before, the first successful parade was held in 2016, about 1,500 participants joined the event. Before the manifestation, Ukraine's far-right organization Right Sector had warned that their supporters would ensure the parade ended in a "bloodbath." 

Related: "National squads": Who marched into Kyiv and why did it happen?

In 2012, a Pride march planned for 20 May was canceled by the organizers because they had received threats of violence from various individuals and groups, and because the Kyiv police failed to guarantee the safety of the demonstrators, telling them “people would get hurt.”

In 2014 and 2013, Ukraine authorities canceled the Equality March after police refused to ensure its safety.

Related: Romani camp burned in Ukraine

In 2015, the pride was organized outside of the city center and lasted only a few minutes - the far right protesters disrupted the event, attacked the participants, threw the flares and firecrackers, and injured at least 9 police officers, the exact number of injured participants was unknown.

Related: Attack on Roma camp in Kyiv's Holosiivky park

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