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Poland to consider outright ban on LGBT+ Pride parades after horrifying bill backed by more than 200,000 homophobes

Emma Powys Maurice November 11, 2020
Poland

Far-right extremists clash with riot police at a Pride parade in Lublin, eastern Poland, in 2019. (Wojtek Radwanski/AFP/Getty)

Poland’s ugly war against LGBT+ people continues with a horrifying new bill that would ban Pride parades throughout the country.

The proposed law, entitled “Stop LGBT”, was submitted to parliament on Monday (November 9) by the lobby group Life and Family Foundation. If passed, it would ban Pride parades as well as any other public gatherings that “promote” queer identities.

The citizen’s legislative initiative – a type of bill that can be submitted by the public so long as it receives 100,000 signatures – also seeks to criminalise any promotion of “sex as an entity independent of biological conditions” and any legal solutions “aimed at privileging same-sex relationships”.

“Equality parades: exhibitionism, public scandal, profanation, provocations, insults of Catholic symbols, clergy and lay faithful, ridicule of the emblem, flag and other national symbols,” the petition states.

“The #StopLGBT project is aimed at ensuring that the constitutional principle of family protection is included in the practice of holding public gatherings, so that public space is free from homopropaganda, and citizens do not have to watch hideous shows on their streets.”

The bill is backed by parts of Poland’s influential Catholic church and has already received over 200,000 supporting signatures from citizens – double the amount needed for it to be reviewed in parliament.

Poland LGBT+ Pride ban may not be possible under constitution.

Pride parades became a flashpoint ahead of Poland’s presidential elections, which saw the leading party, PiS, secure a landslide win after a campaign based on virulent homophobia.

The party’s leader Jarosław Kaczyński made clear his intention to ban Pride, urging Poland to do away with the “travelling theatre” of equality marches.

“The hard offensive, this travelling theatre that is showing up in different cities to provoke and then cry,” he told voters. “We are the ones who are harmed by this, it must be unmasked and discarded.”

Despite this, a PiS spokesman offered no promises that the proposal to ban Pride would actually be possible under Polish law.

“I cannot imagine how the law would be formulated so that it would not violate the constitution,” Radosław Fogiel told Radio Zet on Tuesday (November 10). “It feels like an attempt to stir up emotions that have subsided. This is not the best idea.”

His reticence could be a sign that PiS is treading carefully after their most significant ally, Donald Trump, was defeated in the US elections. According to recent reports the party is uneasy after the victory of Joe Biden, whom they fear will be critical of their anti-LGBT+ domestic policies.

More: Europe, Life and Family Foundation, PiS, Poland

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