I In Moscow three members of an all-female rock group called “Pussy Riot” are under arrest for performing an impromptu performance in a Russian church. The group usually perform in skimpy dresses and balaclavas. Their membership seems to fluctuate between 7 and 11.
Their chief offence seems to be that they were singing anti –Putin songs. Putin, as you probably know, has served two term as president of Russia, and one term now Prime Minister. Now he’s President again. Russia has turned into one of those states where election results seem predictable and the winner always seems to win by a big margin. Just like other states loved and knew so well in the past: The Philippines under Marcos, Malaysia for the last 30 years, Iran with Ahmadinejad today.
Pussy Riot also have a history of performing in public without a permit. Well why do you need a permit to per in public? I guess that might apply in many cities: it might depend on the amount of electrical gear you are carting around.
The act that got them into trouble recently was singing in a Russian orthodox church. The lyrics of the song called on the virgin Mary to “chase Putin out.” The three members of the group who did that have been charged with “hooliganism” which carries a seven sentence. Seven years??? Seven years??? No that wasn’t a typo.
And even if they were disrupting a religious service, why can’t they be released on bail? Amnesty International has taken up their case.
Many readers of this blog will have religious backgrounds. They may not approve of violating a religious service. On the other hand, many of those same people will believe in democracy, where oppositions have a fair chance of winning elections, ballot counts are honest, and there is freedom of the press. Russia seems a little deficient on these front.
So what do you think? Is singing protests sings in a church an offence that should carry a seven year jail sentence? Leave a comment below
Here are some links to Pussy riot.
France 24 news article, Wikipedia, National Public radio
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