August 8, 2012

Madonna and Yoko Ono appeal to Vladimir Putin to free Pussy Riot.

Pussy Riot is on trial for a performance in the Christ the Saviour Cathedral in which they "danced and sang a song which parodies a Christian prayer, imploring the Virgin Mary to rid Russia of Mr Putin." They are charged with "hooliganism" (or whatever word or words in Article 213 of the Russian penal code have been translated into "hooliganism") and "are accused of inciting religious hatred." The chose the site for their performance, "in front of the altar of Moscow's main cathedral" because "the head of the Russian Orthodox Church, Patriarch Kirill, publicly back[ed] Mr Putin in elections."

IN THE COMMENTS: Irene points out that the English word "hooligan" began around 1898 and quickly made its way into Russian, where it is "khuligan."
By 1900-01 khuligan was widely used to describe the gangs of young toughs who were frightening respectable citizens all over Russia, and it has never fallen out of favor since.

46 comments:

Carnifex said...

Not to be facetious but, God bless our 1st amendment rights.

wyo sis said...

Cats are rioting? Why?

wyo sis said...

It's odd what appeals to Vladimir Putin.

shoutingthomas said...

Dunno.

Yes, First Amendment is great. Yada yada.

Yes, people like this Pussy Riot group want to destroy tradition, defame men and glorify homosexuality. We're dealing with the outcome of 60 years of this bullshit in the U.S.

A pox on both sides.

edutcher said...

That headline even beats, "Headless man found in topless bar". It just sings.

And, of course, ol' Vlad is terribly concerned with maintaining respect for the Orthodox Church, just like Joe and Lavrenti did.

Ann Althouse said...

"Not to be facetious but, God bless our 1st amendment rights."

And what happens when you go into a cathedral here and, without permission, put on a rock show in front of the altar? Seems to me there are content neutral laws that would make this a crime and the First Amendment wouldn't help you.

Nonapod said...

The headline
"Madonna and Yoko Ono appeal to Vladimir Putin to free Pussy Riot." seems like it's from a rambling, free form stream of consciousnesses poem about pop culture or something.

AprilApple said...

The elite celebrity left are anti-free speech in America. All your speech belong to the "just shut up and worship the democrat party" or lefty celebrity will refer to you as a Nazi inside a dance routine.
But when it comes to Russia and Putin, the lefty celebs are down with the free speech struggle.
Got it.

edutcher said...

Freedom of speech is too important to be left to everyone.

(New Left 60s saying)

prairie wind said...

Putin loves his celebrity. Maybe he will listen to Madonna and Yoko Ono because they are celebrities, too. They probably think he's the cat's meow.

Fen said...

Too bad Madonna & Yoko can't be counted on to defend the free speech of Americans like Truett Cathy.

traditionalguy said...

Ridicule is now a weapon of politics. So the Ruler has arrested the opposition for a public blasphemy.

Putin is like the Honeybadger, he don't care.

ricpic said...

Plus, Yoko promised to tickle your balls and Madonna will go down on you as only she can. Do it, Vlad!

Irene said...

"khuligan"

Carnifex said...

I don't know professor. Let's look at what happens to the GLBT people that disrupt church services in SF wearing nuns habits and generally cavorting like fools. I'm too lazy to google this and I'm sure other posters remember such episodes and might know the outcome. If they were charged with more than trespassing I would be greatly surprised. And if charged with more, what of conviction?

Free speech means that you are able to voice your opinion,no matter who it offends. I don't like Nazi's, or the clan, or the Westboro Baptist Church, or the GLBT dickheads, but by God! I lovethat they can express their viewpoint without sanction by the government. If the private parties do something in retaliation, well, their just expressing their rights too. Freedom of speech does not include freedom of consequences.

rcommal said...

Is the space in front of an altar in a church to be thought of as part of the public square, an important concept to consider, IMO, with regard to free speech rights?

Private space and private property matter, too, in promoting individual dignity and freedom. Free speech and/or freedom of expression aren't the only important rights, and they are not the only necessary ones, either.

edutcher said...

Leave it to the Micks to give the world all the words for bad behavior.

Good one, Irene.

Bender said...

And what happens when you go into a cathedral here and, without permission, put on a rock show in front of the altar?

And what would have happened if a rock band had gone into a synogogue or Catholic church and put on a rock show supporting Putin?

Let's be clear here -- they were arrested mostly for criticizing Putin and secondarily for violating the Russian Orthodox church specifically, not for violating religious freedom in general.

Kirk Parker said...

Putin is sure to back down now that Yoko Ono is on the case.

Ann Althouse said...

"Free speech means that you are able to voice your opinion,no matter who it offends. I don't like Nazi's, or the clan, or the Westboro Baptist Church, or the GLBT dickheads, but by God! I lovethat they can express their viewpoint without sanction by the government. "

Westboro Baptist Church wins in court because they are extremely careful about avoiding violating any of the content-neutral laws such as trespassing.

Imagine them barging into some other group's place of worship... maybe a Sikh temple... and putting on their show. They would be arrested and convicted, I would bet.

Here, check out what Act-Up did in the United States circa 1990, notably in the biggest cathedral in NYC. They were arrested.

Alan said...

I've got an offer that Vlad can't refuse - we take Pussy Riot, he keeps Madonna and Yoko.

Ann Althouse said...

Under American law, what's important is viewpoint neutrality. So whatever you'd like to see done to these defendants for this protest, you have to want the same if they were expressing an opinion that you find hateful. That's the test of your support for free speech.

So imagine a punk rock group that goes into the cathedral and in front of altar in exactly the same way expresses... oh, let's say the ideas that Wade Michael Page believed in: totally despicable racism.

Okay, carry on with your paeans to the First Amendment. Just stay on track and don't forget the principle you're committed to.

Ann Althouse said...

"If they were charged with more than trespassing I would be greatly surprised."

Pussy Riot is facing a 3-year sentence.

Saint Croix said...

Pussy Riot is the most awesome name for a punk band, ever.

prairie wind said...

Okay, carry on with your paeans to the First Amendment. Just stay on track and don't forget the principle you're committed to.

Is that difficult to do?

creeley23 said...

My Russian professor preferred the eccentric Alexander Lipson textbook, which eschewed boring normal vocabulary about pencil boxes for parodies of Soviet propaganda. One of the early sentences I learned was how hooligans were uncultured and loved to smoke cigarettes.

I see on Amazon that a used copy of Lipson is going for $248.

Chef Mojo said...
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Chef Mojo said...
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Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

IIRC, Russian doesn't have an initial (i.e., start-of-the-word) equivalent of "H." Sometime-USSR-ally, sometime-enemy Adolf was (transliterated) "Gitler."

wv: 30 candlem. Is that the going plural now? My bad; I've been calling them "candles."

Chef Mojo said...

Pussy Riot is facing a 3-year sentence.

Pussy Riot is getting off lightly by Russian Standards.

Imagine if they were Journalists?

harrogate said...
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Methadras said...

It's pretty funny to see moronic leftists asking soviet leftards to free those that spoke against the godhood of their system. ROFL.

Robert Cook said...

If Pussy Riot had pulled a stunt like this in NYC the NYPD would have tased them and/or sprayed them with pepper spray, possibly knocked 'em around a bit or made sure their bonds were painfully tight and their limbs wrenched into agonizing positions.

Of course, "they deserve it" would be the hue and cry of the Althouse reg'lars if that had been the case.

Ann Althouse said...

Discussion of deletions will be deleted. Put it in email.

Nichevo said...

Yeah, I don't blame you.

But why bother? I'm in a hospital listening to fifty doctors, I haven't got the time for repetition.

Suffice it to say that Russia is not America, and by failing to recognize that, you and Robert Cook show your quality.

Methadras said...

Robert Cook said...

If Pussy Riot had pulled a stunt like this in NYC the NYPD would have tased them and/or sprayed them with pepper spray, possibly knocked 'em around a bit or made sure their bonds were painfully tight and their limbs wrenched into agonizing positions.

Of course, "they deserve it" would be the hue and cry of the Althouse reg'lars if that had been the case.


It's pretty funny to see a moronic leftist... Ah, well, as you can read cookies nonsense, you can see the point.

Nichevo said...

+1 Meth, he really ripped off the mask with that one, didn't he? After all that time trying to play principled radical, too, he's just a Stalinist plant. Except you need a new word because, no Stalin. Still, same difference. Well, what can you do.

Frankly I'm more vexed at our hostess. Wouldn't have thought it of her.

Robert Cook said...
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Robert Cook said...

"Suffice it to say that Russia is not America...."

Oh, No?

Of course, it's been going on for years now even without a judge's imprimatur.

Nichevo said...

Hey Cook. Did you read my prior post, the one that's missing? If so maybe you could address that. Or, just be yourself.

Robert Cook said...

No.

Carnifex said...

We are talking across each other... I agree that trespassing charges would, and should be filed. But that has nothing to do with freedom of speech, that hasd to do with property rights. Does the church "own" the roperty it's built on? If the answer is yes, then the church can allow, or dis-allow anyone they want. But you can say what ever the hell you want without some government Nazi getting a bug up his butt.

And if I sing paeans to the First amendment, is that a bad thing? Obviously there are limits...you can't shout "fire" in a theater is the classic example, but that's just for public safety, not because it's harsh politi-speak.

I appreciate all our amendments. I just wish some more would. Like those that want to curtail my 2nd amendment rights. Do they not appreciate all the amendments equally? Provably, they don't. So when you try to step on my 2nd or any other right, do I have the pleasure of trying to withdraw or curtail the ones you hold sacred?

Robert Cook said...

"And if I sing paeans to the First amendment, is that a bad thing? Obviously there are limits...you can't shout 'fire' in a theater is the classic example, but that's just for public safety, not because it's harsh politi-speak."

I've alway considered this to be totally bogus, inapt argument...shouting "fire" in a crowded theater is not "speech," except in the most mechanically literal way, (and if a theater were on fire, one would justified in shouting it). "Speech," as used in and protected by the 1st Amendment is the expression of ideas, even those contrary to general consensus, popularity or propriety, or the revelation of facts and expression of opinion that may be embarrassing (or worse) or disagreeable to the authorities for any reason.

This specious metaphor was used by the Court to justify the principle that the state may suppress speech it considers inflammatory. Of course, the state also gets to determine what is inflammatory.

The "shouting fire in a crowded theater" standard is nothing but a neat and devious trick on the American people.

city said...

thanks for sharing.

Alan said...

"Suffice it to say that Russia is not America...."

True. Russia has only one czar.

Cartoon characters like Madonna and Yoko Ono coming to Pussy Riot's defense is a public relations win for Putin.

Pussy Riot's offense ranks with the tamest of the Occupy crimes (trespassing and disturbing the peace), but it doesn't warrant an indictment 2,800 pages long. "Hooliganism" isn't a bad name for the crime on someone else's property uninvited is worth a trespassing charge

Alan said...

(That last sentence starting with "Hooliganism" was from an an earlier draft that was supposed to wind up on the cutting room floor but didn't.)