They’re fighting over the kids and now artists are joining in.
This time it is a row between the governments of Russia and the U.S. It seems that Russian President Vladimir Putin has recently instituted a ban on American adoptions of Russian children, presumably a calculated response to U.S. legislation aimed at punishing Russian political corruption.
Now a group of prominent Russian cultural figures have issued a call to repeal the ban, including an exception for children to join American parents that have already come to know. As the Times reports,”
“Chulpan Khamatova, revered here for her charity work as well as her acting, spoke in front of a screen showing blown-up photographs of families whose adoptions have been halted. Beside her sat Beth Hettinger of Westfield, N.J., who flew to Russia to bring back Aleksei, who is 18 months old. Ms. Hettinger was scheduled to leave Russia without Aleksei on Friday.
“’A child, even if he is very small, is already waiting for his mama to come and get him, and she does not come,’ Ms. Khamatova said. ‘When he grows up he is told, ‘When you were small, this thing took place.’ This will happen, anyway. I think he will hate his country, and hate his motherland.’
“She said she had visited children’s homes in Russia ‘where children lie in heaps, in huge wards,’ and added: ‘Dear, respected president, dear, respected society, let’s make an exception. Our country is so big, and we always ignore the specific fates of people. Just once, let’s not ignore them.’
“ Khamatova, who has a husky voice and an unguarded manner, commands unusual moral authority in Russia, and shocked many in creative circles by agreeing to star in a campaign advertisement for Mr. Putin last year. Her appeal on Thursday pointed to the passionate social divide over Mr. Putin’s decision to ban American adoptions, a response to American legislation aiming to punish Russian officials accused of corruption. While polling shows that the move met with approval in Russia’s heartland, people in Moscow were far more critical, and tens of thousands joined a protest march in January.”