Russian President Vladimir Putin addressed gender issues at his annual press conference on Thursday, expressing disapproval for the current trends in the US which he described as “new strains” of a “pandemic”.
In response to a question from a reporter for RT, a state media company, about his views on “problems in Western society,” Putin responded, “If someone thinks that women and men are the same things, then be my guest. But there is common sense,” he said. “I adhere to that traditional approach that a woman is a woman and a man is a man. A mother is a mother, a father is a father. And I hope that our society has the internal moral protection dictated by the traditional religious denominations of the Russian Federation,” he said during the four-hour address.
“A woman is a woman, a man is a man”: Putin compares gender nonconformity to the coronavirus pandemic
— The Washington Post (@washingtonpost) December 24, 2021
Putin cited a recent case in the US when a criminal serving time for rape declared that he was female and after a transfer to a women’s prison committed the same crime in his cell.
He said that in the case of athletes if a man “declares himself a woman and decides to compete in weightlifting or some other sport, women’s sports would cease to exist altogether.”
Putin expressed hope that the Russian people would resist this trend.
“[We] have sufficient internal deep immune systems of protection against this obscurantism,” Putin said. “And it is necessary to fight this not with direct orders and shouts and accusations but with the support for our traditional values.”
Putin frequently criticizes this aspect of Western culture. In remarks at the annual meeting of the Valdai Discussion Club in Sochi in October, he said the fact that children in the West are “taught that a boy can become a girl and vice-versa” is “on the verge of a crime against humanity.