CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV/AP) -Two months after Russian President Vladimir Putin defended Russia’s anti-gay law by equating gays with pedophiles, evangelist Franklin Graham is praising Putin for his stance on homosexuality.
Putin made headlines ahead of the Sochi Winter Olympics saying Russia needs to “cleanse” itself of homosexuality if it wants to increase its birth rate.
A Russian law passed last year banning “propaganda of nontraditional sexual relations” among minors has caused an international outcry. The law has contributed to growing animosity toward gays in Russian society, with rights activists reporting a rise in harassment and abuse.
Putin said the law was aimed at banning propaganda of homosexuality and pedophilia, suggesting that gays are more likely to abuse children.
In the March 2014 issue of “Decision Magazine,” Graham said he wasn’t endorsing Putin, but stated that it was sad that “Russia’s standard [of morality] is higher than our own.”
“Even though Putin said that gays and lesbians would be allowed at the Olympics, the fact that he took a stand—simply to protect children—ignited a worldwide cultural firestorm,” Graham stated.
Read more: WBTV