In defending the recent anti-pedophile laws, Orbán maintains that “education in schools must not be in conflict with the will of parents; it must at most be supplementary, its form and content must be clearly defined and it must be subject to parental consent” and that “parents also rightly expect that on platforms used by our children, pornography, sexuality for its own sake, homosexuality and gender reassignment programs should not be available.”
He pointed out that the laws do not interfere with the private practices of consenting adults but are only aimed at protecting children, affirming that “in Hungary, no one has a say in how adults live their lives” and that “a free adult should not have to give an account of his life in front of any secular authority — only before God when the time comes.”
The new laws do not apply “to the lives and sexual practices of adults over 18, nor to what they are exposed to as an adult in the public realm,” Orbán emphasized.
The Hungarian prime minister also took aim at the mainstream media and the political left, asserting that “European mainstream media exclude, neglect and ban thoughts which are not compatible with the worldview they relay day in day out.”
“Let’s face it, this movement is eternal, and its new slogan is no longer ‘Proletarians of the world, unite!’ but ‘Liberals of the world, unite!’ This, of course, reinforces the Central European conviction that today’s liberals are in fact communists with degrees,” Orbán added.
In further defense of the new laws, Hungarian government spokesman Zoltán Kovács emphasized that the restrictions on LGBT content aimed at children are not the main focus of the legislation. Rather, the laws are meant to create a tougher stance against pedophiles by, among other measures, making the penal code “stricter in the case of sexual offenders, with penalties increasing and no statute of limitation for the most serious crimes.”
One aspect of the legislation is the creation of a searchable photographic register of child predators, along with language banning them from many jobs where they might come into contact with children.
It also establishes that children cannot be shown any content encouraging gender change or homosexuality. This ban extends to advertising.
David Vig, director of Amnesty International in Hungary, fired back at the legislation, claiming that it “appears to be a deliberate attempt by the Hungarian government to conflate pedophilia with LGBTI people.”
Critics have compared the Hungarian laws to the 2013 Russian legislation “for the Purpose of Protecting Children from Information Advocating for a Denial of Traditional Family Values,” often referred to as the “gay propaganda law.”
The Russian law targets “propaganda on nontraditional sexual relations.”
These moves in Europe come as parents in American schools become increasingly concerned about sexual content and pro-LGBT messaging in the nation’s classrooms.
In a recent example, a presenter at a Manhattan prep school gave juniors a lesson on “porn literacy.” The New York Post reported that in addition to showing pictures of partially-nude women (some in bondage), “one slide cited various porn genres such as ‘incest-themed,’ consensual or ‘vanilla,’ ‘barely legal,’ and ‘kink and BDSM’ (which included ‘waterboard electro’ torture porn as an example).”
Then there’s the Black Lives Matter at school program being implemented on campuses across America for children as young as kindergarten age. The program teaches students to be transgender and “queer-affirming.”
While U.S. state and local governments have not directly tackled LGBT propaganda as Hungary has, a number have taken action on related issues, such as banning boys from participating in girls’ sports.
In April, Arkansas became the first state to outlaw transgender sex change therapy for minors, with the state’s legislature overriding Republican Governor Asa Hutchinson’s veto to do so. Tennessee followed a month later.
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