Madonna Faces $10.5 Million Lawsuit Over LGBT Support in Russia
After Madonna challenged St. Petersburg's gay pride ban at a concert there earlier this month, a group of activists has announced they will file a $10.5 million lawsuit against the pop star for "moral damage," reports RIA Novosti, a Russian news agency. Members of the Union of Russian Citizens, the civil group People's Assembly and the New Great Russia party are submitting the lawsuit today.
"We demand that she pay for moral damage suffered by St. Petersburg residents as a result of her actions during the show on August 9th," a spokeswoman for the Union of Russian Citizens said. "We must defend our right to normal cultural life without propaganda of values and views that contradict the Russian culture."
A lawyer representing the group said the "psychological stress and emotional shock" was felt beyond the show's attendees, claiming many other people were affected by footage of the show and reports on the Internet. "While speaking of tolerance, she abuses the feelings of believers," said Alexander Pochuyev, claiming Madonna's "open promotion of homosexuality" was at fault. The singer handed out handed out pink bracelets and repeatedly showed support for the LGBT community during her set August 9th, despite protests in the city.
The lawsuit adds more controversy to Madonna's MNDA tour: Elton John bashed her earlier this month and called her career "over." She displayed World War II-era footage of the Warsaw Uprising at a tour stop in the Polish capital, in reaction to protests. In July, a Paris crowd booed and call her a "slut" after her 45-minute set at an unexpected show. France's far right National Front party announced they will file a lawsuit against Madonna for her use of Nazi imagery at a tour stop in Paris. She has also canceled the Australian leg of her MDNA tour and was recently sued over an uncleared sample on her 1990 hit "Vogue."