by Rex Wockner
A new poll by Russia’s Center for Public Opinion Research has found almost universal opposition to gay people, GayRussia.ru reported Aug. 8.
The poll, conducted in late July, questioned 1,600 people in 130 cities and has a margin of error of 3.4 percent.
It found that 74 percent of Russians believe gays and lesbians are morally dissolute or mentally defective, while only 15 percent think they are normal.
Thirty-nine percent of those questioned believe that homosexuals should be forcibly treated for their condition or isolated from society, 24 percent think gays should be sent to psychologists, 25 percent think gays should be left in peace and 4 percent think homosexuals should be eliminated.
On the matter of equal rights, the findings were better, with 45 percent of Russians saying gays and lesbians should have equal rights – unless the issue is marriage. Only 14 percent of those questioned support letting gay couples marry.
And unless the issue is freedom of assembly. Eighty-two percent of Russians object to gay pride parades. A whopping 8 percent support them.
The poll found that men, older people, poorer people and people with less education are more homophobic.
“The conclusion we can make from these results is that we only have more work ahead,” said Moscow Pride head Nikolai Alekseev. “The attitude of Russians toward gay prides (and) same-sex marriages cannot improve when officials are using the media to call for hatred towards the LGBT community.”