Madonna has joined the Human Rights Campaign’s (HRC) new “Love Conquers Hate” T-shirt campaign in support of Russia’s beleaguered lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community.
It isn’t the first time that the Material Girl, 55, has spoken out in defense of Russia’s LGBT residents. During a St. Petersburg show on her MDNA World Tour, she urged fans to “show your love and appreciation to the gay community.” She then added, “We want to fight for the right to be free,” Reuters reported at the time.
She was later sued by a coalition of anti-LGBT groups for more than $10 million for “moral damage suffered by St. Petersburg residents” during her performance. That lawsuit was later dismissed.
The Queen of Pop penned a poignant email to HRC members:
Dear fellow equality supporter,
“Love conquers hate.” It’s an iconic message that the Human Rights Campaign’s members and supporters have spread to millions around the United States.
But right now in Russia, LGBT people and our allies who support basic fairness and dignity face a different reality. They are being targeted by hateful new laws that outlaw support for LGBT equality. Even with the 2014 Sochi Olympics just a few months away, fair-minded Russians are facing fines, harassment, and violence at the hands of thugs.
At this dangerous moment in Russian history, we as advocates have a responsibility to speak up and take our hopeful message global. That’s why I’m joining HRC’s Love Conquers Hate campaign, in hopes that more and more fair-minded people around the world will stand up and fight against the Russian government’s campaign of hate.
Right now, you can send that message directly to the Russian people and provide much-needed support to LGBT advocates in Russia by purchasing the Russian-language Love Conquers Hate t-shirt. And once you have your t-shirt, share a picture of yourself wearing it on social media using #LoveConquersHate. With your help, we can make this simple message go global.
Make no mistake about it: the goal of these hateful laws is to leave LGBT Russians feeling isolated. Worthless. Completely alone.
Together, we can send a message to LGBT Russians that the world is on their side, and that those who seek to support them aren’t alone in this fundamental fight for fairness.
It’s time for love to conquer hate everywhere, for everyone. I hope you’ll stand with me in this fight.