Recently, however, Poland has taken a rather hard turn to the right, and now is led by the Kaczinski twins--one the president, one the prime minister, both gay-hating thugs. Taking a page out of Robert Mugabe's playbook, the Polish government
...announced it was planning to pass a sweeping bill that, under the guise of interdicting "the promotion of homosexuality," would ban discussion of, or teaching about, homosexuality in the schools. The move came just it was announced that President Kaczynski would deliver the opening address at a World Congress of Families organized this coming May in Poland by gay-hating U.S. Christian right groups.
The schools bill is sponsored by the Kaczynskis' Minister of Education, notorious anti-gay demagogue Roman Giertych, who is also Deputy Prime Minister. Giertych is the leader of the Catholic nationalist, anti-Semitic League of Polish Families party, the Kaczynskis coalition partner in government. Vice Minister of Education Miroslaw Orzechowski told reporters that the main goal of the law is to "punish whomever promotes homosexuality or any other deviance of a sexual nature in educational establishments," and that any teacher who violated the law could be fired, fined, and even imprisoned.
So very interestingly, terrible twin Jaroslaw Kaczinski (the prime minister) appears to be living up to the stereotype of the most virulent gay-bashers being closet cases themselves:
"Now all Poland knows that the Polish Secret Service was looking for Jaroslaw Kaczynski's boyfriend," a noted gay activist, Lukasz Palucki, one of the organizers of this year's successful Warsaw Gay Pride March, told Gay City News from Warsaw.
The Secret Service documents discussing the current prime minister's homosexuality were later published by the country's leading daily, Wyborcza Gazeta, as well. TVN24, a commercial TV network, also ran a report.
Charming. Thoroughly charming. Despite the PM's orientation, or maybe because of it, the government promotes a virulently anti-gay atmosphere that leads to official gay-bashing we've come to expect from places like Nigeria and Iran. It shouldn't be that surprising. "Inevitable" is probably a more accurate word when a strongly Catholic country begins to officially express the anti-gay beliefs of Pope Benedict (nee Jozef Ratzinger).
In 1992, Ratzinger upped the ante. In an analysis of Legislative Proposals on the Non-discrimination of Homosexual Persons, the [Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF)] repeated that "the inclination itself must be seen as an objective disorder" and extended this principle to civil law. " 'Sexual orientation' does not constitute a quality comparable to race, ethnic background, etc. in respect to non-discrimination," said the document. "There are areas in which it is not unjust discrimination to take sexual orientation into account." The obvious areas were adoption and education, but the CDF sought broader precedents for antigay legislation in housing and employment, noting that "the state may restrict the exercise of rights, for example, in the case of contagious or mentally ill persons." If homosexual orientation was sick and infectious, why should purification stop at the priesthood?
...The facile defense of Ratzinger's campaign against gay inclinations in the clergy is that the Catholic sex-abuse scandal proved these inclinations were too dangerous to tolerate. But even if you buy the argument that the abuse stemmed from homosexuality rather than pedophilia and sexual segregation—I don't—it doesn't explain why he targeted gay inclinations in 1986, long before the scandal exploded. Nor is it comforting that his Instruction applies only to priests. As he made clear 13 years ago, if homosexual tendencies are a contagious disease, the infection—and the purge—will go on.
Maybe fundamentalists have a good reason for refusing to consider European precedent when crafting United States law. If we focus too hard on Poland (to its credit, the EU is pissed), we get a big fat object lesson on the human costs incurred when religious dogma steers civil policy, and are unable to shrug it off as those crazy Muslims or nutty animist Zimbabweans failing to act as civilized as we normal Christian white people would. The average Polish government official looks pretty much like the average guy from Iowa and most likely worships the same god he does. It didn't take much approbation from the Vatican to embolden Poland in its gay-baiting spree, no more than a few beers and a few buddies might encourage the farm boy to beat the shit out of the too-skinny guy on the next barstool who brushes against him the wrong way. More of us over here need to start paying attention.