While Russia’s president Vladimir Putin today was telling the press that there is “no infringement on the rights of sexual minorities,” executives at the state-controlled Russian TV network Rossiya K were parting ways with an acclaimed journalist who came out as gay August 30. Oleg Dusaev worked for Rossiya K (Россия К), an arts and culture network originally named Kultura (Culture).
A few hours ago Dusaev announced via Facebook, “Today is my last day working at the TV channel Culture.”
Technically, the Russian government just didn’t renew Dusaev’s contract, but the document Dusaev posted, which The New Civil Rights Movement had examined by a Russian expert, is very formally signed, stamped, and states it is an “order” and uses the word “dismissal.”
Others, like RUSA LGBT, a group for the Russian-speaking American LGBTQ community, say he was fired.
Journalist and musician Oleg Dusaev was fired today from TV channel Russia-K (Culture). He came out on August 30th. http://t.co/OoFtteMCOW
— RUSA LGBT (@rusalgbt) September 19, 2013
Dusaev, who is 33, posted to Facebook the document from his employer, dated September 5 — days after coming out — stating that his annual contract would end today, September 19.
Later today on Facebook Dusaev wrote, “Friends, I ask you, no offense, but I just physically can’t answer. Please give me time to be alone to think, just relax. I really appreciate your support very much. But I have no strength.”
Dusaev came out publicly on August 30, in a Facebook post:
“Today and for me it’s a time to be brave,” the journalist, who is also an accomplished pianist, wrote. “Openly and honestly I want to tell you that I am gay.” Dusaev wrote that “[my] orientation…is not a determining factor in my attitude to life and people.”
“I am totally the same person you knew before. All the same, the pianist and journalist Oleg Dusaev.”
Saying that “any hatred is evil,” Dusaev exclaimed, “I am a faithful Christian, convinced that God created and loves me for who I am. And I will with conviction defend the most important right in my life, which I have identified–that is the right to do good for people.
“That we have no homophobia–this is false. The fact that homosexuals have the same rights as everyone else–it’s a lie.
“Let’s stop lying and, above all, stop lying to ourselves.”
On September 2 Dusaev, also via Facebook, announced he was in a relationship.
The termination, however disturbing, sadly cannot have come as a surprise.
In his August 30 post, Dusaev mentioned his friend, Anton Krasovsky, another journalist fired earlier this year by the Russian government, for being gay. Duseav commended Krasovsky for being “bold.”
In an interview on the day he came out, Dusaev told Russian news site Gay.ru, that what “I’m much more worried about now is not my career, but the fact that the thugs kill and maim Russian gays and lesbians. Silence in such a situation is impossible.”
Dusaev noted it is a “Shame to observe how deeply divided the gay community is in Russia. My hope is that my move could set an example to others, and we really turn into a community, not in words but in deeds.” He added, “My boyfriend has supported me, for which I am very grateful to him.”
Image of Oleg Dusaev via Facebook
Editor’s note: All quotes of Dusaev’s comments from the original Russian were translated via Google or Bing and some words have been slightly modified in the translation to English for readability and comprehension.
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