Does it surprise anyone that Russia’s new anti-gay law prohibiting what it calls “homosexual propaganda” is fueling a surge in homophobic acts by holier-than-thou organizations and individuals in that country?

Reports The Guardian:

Russia has experienced an upsurge in homophobic vigilantism following the introduction of legislation outlawing “homosexual propaganda” in June, gay and lesbian groups say. Activists say the legislation has emboldened rightwing groups who use social media to “ambush” gay people, luring them to meetings and then humiliating them on camera – sometimes pouring urine on them. These groups often act against gay teenagers, several of whom told the Guardian that rising homophobia and vigilante activity force them to lead lives of secrecy. The Russian LGBT Network said the harassment of gay people was being organised nationally for the first time through groups known as Occupy Gerontophilia and Occupy Paedophilia, who claim to be trying to “reform” homosexuals.

I’m betting some authorities and lawmakers behind the legislation are secretly, if not openly, applauding the attacks by the bigots and homophobes. Indeed, the Guardian report points out that “an MP in the Siberian region of Zabaikalsk called for a law allowing gays to be publicly flogged by Cossacks.”

Clearly, Russia is degenerating quickly. It appears to be less and less safe for LGBT people and anyone who supports them.

It’s time nations like Canada, the United States, Britain and France gave serious thought to boycotting the Winter Olympics in Russia for both the safety of our athletes and in protest against what many see as a violation of international rights . . . and plain old bigotry.