Friday, 7 February 2014

Annie releases new pro-LGBT song 'Russian Kiss'

The Norwegian electropop chanteuse Annie has released a new song "Russian Kiss" whose lyrics defend LGBT rights while the song title clearly points a finger at (or perhaps gives the finger to) the Russian president Vladimir Putin and his recent anti-LGBT laws that forbid "gay propaganda" such as rainbow flags and public displays of affection between same-sex partners. The laws have worsened the social status of Russian LGBT citizens who have experienced discrimination and violence because of their sexuality. There's even an organised group called "Occupy Pedophilia" (apparently, the group regards homosexuality and pedophilia as somehow linked) that systematically harasses gay men in several ways while filming it and then uploading the videos on the internet to further humiliate their victims.

Annie encourages the LGBT people to fight for their human rights by singing "Don't give up, maybe then they can understand / It is right that you fight for your love demands" before chanting "Shake a fist for the Russian kiss!". The release of the song and the accompanying music video was timed to coincide with the opening of the Olympics to make clear what the message is. Would it work better without the cliché-like imagery of scantily dressed promiscuous people and the sound of the men moaning in the background? Well, yeah. I personally think the over-sexualisation of the LGBT rights campaigns kind of shoot themselves in the foot, but the intention is good and the statement is bold nevertheless. You can watch the music video below.

Meanwhile, Google has made a similar statement on its home page with its rainbow-coloured, Olympic-themed doodle which features a quote that deals with the connection between the Olympics and human rights:

Hopefully there will be a time where we don't have to fight for universal human rights anymore and they would be taken for granted everywhere in the world. Meanwhile, you can support the work for LGBT rights for instance by buying Annie's song over here - proceeds from the sales will be donated to the non-profit LGBT charity All Out.

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