A Russian men’s magazine has published a list of 10 openly gay male celebrities including Neil Patrick Harris who deserve to be “forgiven” for their sexuality given they’ve earned a certain level of “respect”.
In the article entitled “Gays We Respect”,
the Russian edition of Maxim opens with "we, men, do not consider men who love men to be men”.
"But there are exceptions. There are gays who have earned our respect and the right to remain real men in our eyes," it read.
Among the celebrities named is How I Met Your Mother
star Neil Patrick Harris, who as a “happy gay” is praised for developing the “Bro Code”.
“It is impossible not to respect the one who raised the hunt for the girls in the present art, systematised all the tricks and techniques and created the "Bro Code." Even if he just played the role. But as it is played!”
Also topping the list is British actor Sir Ian McKellen, forgiven for his portrayal of “villain Magneto of the trilogy, X-Men and Gandalf from the Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit,” and the Queen’s decision to knight him in 1990.
Following McKellen is comedian Stephen Fry, which the magazine calls “the sample of an English gentleman”, and "the living embodiment of the idea that one can be openly gay and a sensible person at the same time".
Fry’s “forgiveness” is earned from his appearance alongside Hugh Laurie in nineties television series Jeeves and Wooster.
The magazine article also recognises Fight Club
author Chuck Palahniuk for creating “a countercultural product saturation” despite his homosexuality.
“In our list Palahniuk has appeared, of course, thanks to Tyler Durden, a role model of all men,” said the article.
The highly offensive piece has received widespread criticism across social media, and within it’s own comments section.
“I had always respected you for adequacy. Not anymore… It's very, very, very worthless material,” wrote one user.
“Speak for yourself, moron,” said another.
Talking to BuzzFeed News,
the editor of Maxim Russia refused to apologise and said “our position is clearly formulated in the introduction of the article."
However US Maxim, was shocked by the piece. "We are deeply disturbed by the article in Maxim Russia and fully condemn it. It is entirely against the views of US Maxim," a spokesperson said.
Russia banned the “promotion of non-traditional sexual relations” through the introduction of anti-gay propaganda laws in 2013.
In late October of this year, a draft bill was introduced to Russia’s parliament to also ban “public expression of unconventional sexual relationships."