Russian television channel Tsargrad TV has launched an initiative to get gay people to leave the country by offering them one-way tickets to America.
In a video posted on Facebook, a host for Tsargrad TV said that “sodomites” and “perverts” could have their plane tickets paid for in order to get them to leave Russia.
“If you are gay and wish to emigrate from Russia, channel Constantinople will buy you a one way ticket with great pleasure,” says the video’s description, complete with emojis of a plane and a sick face.
The homophobic video message was posted earlier this week on Saint Petersburg-based social network VK, Russia’s most popular website, and has since gained over 34,000 views.
The video features clips of LGBT marches from abroad as well as a Russian plane taking off with a unicorn cartoon climbing aboard its wings. There is also a moment when a guy rubs his nipples and screams like a howler monkey. We’re down with all of this — especially the unicorn.
Host Andrey Afanasyev says California is a sympathetic home to Russian LGBT people. “This is not a joke,” he says. “We really want you to return there, where you can openly submit to your sins.”
“Just recently, California — the most liberal state in the USA by the way — proposed to facilitate the granting of green cards to Russian perverts,” says Afanasyev.
“The staff of Tsargrad TV support this initiative. Moreover, we are ready to pay for a one-way ticket to anyone who plans to emigrate in complete earnest, and can provide a medical certificate proving that they are sodomites or have other forms of perversion,” he added.
However, the BBC reports that it’s unlikely anyone would be able to take the channel up on the offer. Gay people aren’t able to produce a medical certificate, because homosexuality is not considered a disease.
One commenter on the video said, “Andrey Afanasyev, on the skull, is not such a stupid guy, but this nonsense is that piercing his stupidity, limited and far mind. The profession of a journalist is to highlight news, analyst and expression, but without insults and labelling.”
The commenter continues, “People are always and all equal before God, before the law (if they are respected) at all, and no one has the right to humiliate, or offend from the country. Unfortunately, journalism in the country ended precisely with Putin’s arrival. There are some who have lost the sense of reality that disgrace the profession.”