Parliament Passed the Putin-like Propaganda Law

Thousands protested and more than 100,000 people signed the petition in vain; Parliament doesn’t care about the opinion of Hungarians. Parliament passed the propaganda law banning LGBTQI-themed educational programs, products, and advertisements for those less than 18 years old.

Parliament passed the modified proposal which would ban all products, advertisements, and media in which homosexual or trans people appear for those less than 18 years old. It would also prohibit the appearance of LGBTQI people in social advertising as well as every (even partially) LGBTQI-themed educational program which mentions the existence of homosexual or trans people.

The proposed law is eerily similar to the law, known as the Propaganda Law, passed by the Russian legislature in 2013 which, in addition to inciting hatred against the LGBTQI community, makes scientific dialogue and outreach about homosexuality and transgenderism impossible. The revision of the law unequivocally hurts further the right to freedom of expression, dignity, and equal treatment. This step endangers the mental health of LGBTQI youth and adults and prevents them from accessing information and affirmative support in a timely manner for preventative purposes. LGBTQI people have the right to live as members of society with equal dignity, without stigma and oppressive taboos.

In Hungary, almost two thirds of LGBTQI students have been verbally harassed due to their sexual orientation, and more than half for their sexual self-expression. Now the government and the right wing representatives have let down LGBTQI youths: they have made it impossible to have sensitizing programs and conversations which promote acceptance.

Monday evening at 6:00PM 10,000 people protested in Kossuth Square against the revised proposal. Moreover, 100,000 people indicated with their signatures as well that they do not want this propaganda law! According to a recent IPSOS 2021 poll, 59% of Hungarians believe that same-sex couples should have the same rights for adoption and 60% believe that same-sex couples are as good as parents as heterosexual couples. In this way without the support of society, the propaganda law is forced on people with the hope of profiting from inciting hatred.

The government is not taking its first blow at LGBTQI people: in the spring of 2020 the legal recognition of the gender of trans and intersex people was made impossible, in December passages were introduced into the basic law that stigmatized transgender people, and the amendments to the Civil Code have made it more difficult for same-sex couples to adopt. The real people hurt by these changes are the children who must spend more time in state care rather than finding a loving family as soon as possible.

Regarding this situation, Luca Dudits, an administrator for Hátter Society said, “the government is trying in vain to make an enemy out of LGBTQI people. The last few days have shown that Hungarians do not want any of this hatred. In the future we will focus on challenging inhuman and illegal law at home and abroad with every available legal tool.”

Budapest Pride organizer Viktória Radványi also added, “The most important thing is that we tell LGBTQI youth and their families that they are not alone and that the masses are standing up for their rights. This is what 10, 000 protesters, 100, 000 petition signers, and everyone who posted or spoke out against this evil law did yesterday.Let’s stand together July 24th during the 26th Budapest Pride Parade, and send a message to everyone: you cannot make us keep quiet and you cannot ban us. Reality cannot be banned.”

Signed by:

  • Amnesty International Magyarország
  • Artemisszió Alapítvány
  • Budapest Pride
  • Emberség Erejével Alapítvány
  • Haver Alapítvány
  • Háttér Társaság
  • Közélet Iskolája
  • Labrisz Leszbikus Egyesület
  • Levegő Munkacsoport
  • Magyar Helsinki Bizottság
  • Nyomtassteis
  • Ökotárs Alapítvány
  • Szivárványcsaládokért Alapítvány

Translated by Amy Soto

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