According to some right-wing Russians, this is probably going to turn your kid gay:
— Dewood (@nirvana0898) November 3, 2014
That's the cover of U2's most recent album, Songs of Innocence. You might remember it as "that album my iPhone kept playing whenever I accidentally opened up iTunes."
The Guardian reports that a member of Russia's Liberal Democratic Party of Russia (LDPR) is raising hell over the album, blaming Apple for "spamming youths with illegal content" – more specifically distributing “gay propaganda” to kids. He wants an investigation from the top legal authority in the country.
You may recall that last September, Apple did everyone the favor of giving out U2's new album to every iTunes user. During Apple’s big press event for the iPhone 6 launch, CEO Tim Cook gave Songs of Innocence to hundreds of millions of people for free. But here’s the thing – instead of just allowing users to download the album for free if they wanted to do so, Apple pushed the album to everyone. It was mandatory U2.
This led to lots of people waking up in a why the fuck is there U2 on my phone stupor, followed by a pretty significant backlash. It was so intense that Apple had to make a dedicated page with the sole purpose of helping people remove the album from their libraries with one click.
U2 called the whole stunt "incredibly subversive", "really disruptive", and totally "punk rock", as U2 would.
Apparently, it wasn't just the music that pissed off Mr. Starovoitov.
The photo, of U2's drummer Larry Mullen Jr hugging his son, is supposed to represent “how holding on to your own innocence is a lot harder than holding on to someone else’s”
But to anti-gay Russians, it's a dangerous promotion of gay sex.
According to a Russian newspaper, there's already talk of taking legal action against Apple.
Look, homophobic Russian dudes – U2 isn't trying to make anyone gay. Apple isn't trying to make anyone gay. You can't make anyone gay. It doesn't work like that. You can make someone's ears bleed, and they may be responsible for that – but that's about as far as it goes.
Even Siri is homophobic in Russia.
Image via Helge Øverås, Wikimedia Commons