I’m into fitness, so on Instagram I follow some Russian fitness guru who’s also a gymnast. Apparently, judging by his photos (nearly all of the text is in Russian), this guy is some kind of instructor for a girls gymnast class. In one video he posted, it shows him shirtless, and a bunch of the girls (who appear to be between the ages of 9 and 14) all dog piling on top of him. If something similar happened in the U.S., how long would it take for “concerned parents” to raise absolute hell? How long before “child-abuse” investigations would be conducted against this guy? So, are the Russians less hysterical about “pedophiles” and “pedophilia” than Americans are? Or is Russia just a more “innocent” society?
relevant Op Ed in the NY Times today: How Gymnastics Culture Breeds Sexual Abuse
My guess is that Russia doesn’t have the same cultural interest in protecting its girls as the US, because feminism is not developed there in the same way. It is feminism which makes it possible to protest the sexual abuse of young girls.
ALL of Russia’s attitudes toward anything related to sexuality seem to be several decades behind us.
I am sorry, is this the same Russia which pioneered state communism? And brought in no fault divorce, abortion and birth control on demand, generous maternity benefits, free child care? And a massive Programme to get women to the workplace? That Russia?
Women’s equality was something the communists were very big on.
Actually after the Bolsherviks came to power, they sort of stated that homosexuality was all dandy. And free love was awesome. One of the reasons that many gay intellectuals supported the Communists, were communists as well. They only changed their views late in to the USSR’s existence. So, I would say you are several decades behind them.
there’s a really very, very, very long spectrum of awareness and/or concern stretching from the Anglo-sphere at one end way across to zero concern/total denial.
Look at Japan, FFS.
It’ll roll out around much of the word in the next 30 years, maybe. Got to remember there aren’t a whole lot of transparent democracies with free press, not in the interests of the powerful for large scale inquiries to start digging.
Actually, Russians are very much opposed to pedophiles, from what I read, because they use that fact to stir up the Population against the homosexuals. In Slavic languages, the word for “pedophile” and “homosexual” are the same or closely related, so it’s easy to trot out the lie that “perverts who like men will also molest children” (just as some fundie Groups in the US still do).
However, non-US culture doesn’t always Interpret any Skin contact as molesting. Not every Country would suspend a 6 year old from School for giving a classmate a kiss on the cheek.
On the other Hand, we look at “Miss …” competitions for Girls as young as toddlers, dancing in very provocative clothes and sexualized poses being accepted as normal in the US and think … WTF? How is it okay to teach Girls that the only worth they have is the sexual Appeal of their Body, Long before they are allowed to kiss a Boy their own Age?
Ballet and gymnastics is the same, just for middle-class parents with Money instead of underclass parents. Taking a 4-year old child and sending it into Training every day is brainwashing, and they do it for the adult judges, not because they like it.
In Russia, you have to decide what it is you want to complain about. You are taking that risk.
No, this is the Russia that just legalized beating your wife.
No they did not. They lowered the penalty is certain cases, but they absolutely did not "legalize’ it, hysterical headlines notwithstanding.
Last year, I spent a month in the former Soviet republics. I got more hugs there in a month than I got in America in the last ten years. People there have not been indoctrinated in a stranger-danger terror of all things tactile, and they feel perfectly comfortable exchanging the warmth that can be conveyed by physical contact.
On a similar note, as a middle aged male it’s interesting to contrast being in the company of African or South American families with British, the latter you can literally feel recoil in horror if one of their children approaches you. The former openly want you to play with them.
It’s got to the point where both situations are awkward.
Well, maybe the slang words (in Polish, the equivalent of something like “faggot” might be pedał, which comes from the word “pederast”), but the official words for pedophile and homosexual share the same roots as in English.
Is this a new development? Because I read in several different articles over several years (talking about the growing persecution of gays in Russia under Putin as easy scapegoats, and the Orthodox Church going along with it) that there was only one word for homosexual. No mention of slang vs. official words, but I don’t know if all the authors spoke Slavic themselves or relied on Interpreters.
I’m reminded of an American aid worker volunteering in Sarajevo after the Yugoslavian wars, where he was working in an orphanage. He told me that everyday he was surrounded by boys and girls who had watched their parents being blown up by landmines. He daily found himself buried under a monkey-pile of squirming delighted children, hungry for the tactile warmth and attention of any caring person Every child wanted to touch him all the time. At first, he thought, Whoa, but then he realized that this is how healthy humans relate to each other as the natural order of socialization.
Maybe in Russian, but in Polish (you said “Slavic” langauges), the words are “pedofil” and “homosexualista” for the equivalent, non-slang terms.
I’m not sure the comparison is as stark as you think. USA Gymnastics has been accused of ignoring the sexual abuse of young gymnasts for decades.
Decades ago, in a magazine in a doctors waiting room, I read a survey that asked women in different countries to rate how satisfied they were with their sex lives. Russian women came in the highest. If that was true, their whole culture must be doing something right.
Edit – I just fouind a more uptodate survey:
Well you could try an experiment, or rather you probably shouldn’t, see if you get more pictures of naked girls under the age of 18 if you include the word Russian in the search.