Google Removes 'Pride and Drag Show' from Promoted LGBTQ+ Events Amidst Controversy Over Religious Sensitivities

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Google removed a 'Pride and Drag Show' from its list of company-promoted LGBTQ+ events in California after facing backlash from hundreds of Christian employees and others. The event, scheduled at the LGBTQ+ bar Beaux in San Francisco, was labeled by petitioners as a direct attack on religious beliefs and sensitivities.

Removal of 'Pride and Drag Show' Promo Section

According to a report from Fox News, the petition highlighted concerns about the provocative and inflammatory nature of the drag artist's performance, explicitly mentioning the artist "Peaches Christ." The petition claimed that such performances disrespect the Christian faith. In response to the criticism, Google promptly removed the event from its list of annually sponsored activities on its website. A Google spokesperson clarified that the event was initially posted without following the company's standard events process. While the event was removed from the company's official list, the performance will still proceed at the planned venue, open to the public for attendance. Google stated that they have a longstanding tradition of celebrating and supporting the LGBTQ+ community, including featuring drag artists in their Pride celebrations.

Moreover, the New York Post reported that in response to a question about whether or not the petition played a role in the decision to terminate the program, Google did not provide an answer. The San Francisco Pride Parade will take place on Sunday, Jun 25, 2023, and the revelers cheer during the parade. Google stated that the cancellation was necessary because of an error in the booking procedure, and it urged its staff to attend other Pride activities instead.

Furthermore, other employees at Google have voiced their opposition to both the petition and the company's decision to eliminate the episode from its series. Some people condemned the objections of their Christian coworkers, saying that they were subjective and that they contributed to the ongoing political culture wars. Comprehensive legislation targeting drag performers' rights has recently inflamed political culture battles. In addition, the workers condemned Google for allegedly caving to the petitioners' demands by secretly removing the event from the company's internal website.

Also Read: Google's Experimental AI 'Bard' Embraces Faith: Christianity Offers Hope to Artificial Mind

Russian Court Fines Google for Promoting' LGBT Propaganda'

Google faced a fine of 3 million rubles ($38,600) from a Russian court on Thursday, May 11, for its failure to remove YouTube videos that allegedly promoted 'LGBT propaganda' and disseminated "false information" about Russia's military campaign in Ukraine. Reuters reported that over the past year, Moscow had imposed numerous fines on Western technology companies to tighten control over the online content accessible to Russian internet users. In addition to enacting censorship laws following its deployment of troops in Ukraine, Russia also strengthened its legislation against the "promotion of LGBT propaganda."

The expanded law broadens Russia's definition of 'LGBT propaganda' and has drawn significant criticism from independent human rights organizations. It reportedly imposes heavy fines on actions or disseminating information deemed as attempts to promote homosexuality in public, online platforms, films, books, or advertising. On the other hand, Russian prosecutors accused Google of refusing to remove several YouTube videos, including one from a blogger labeled a "foreign agent" by Moscow. The videos discussed topics such as same-sex couples raising children and the LGBT community in St. Petersburg.

Related Article:Google Faces Lawsuit From Attorney Generals For Exploitation Of User Information