By Stefan J. Bos, Chief International Correspondent Worthy News reporting from Budapest, Hungary
(Worthy News) – Hungary’s embattled prime minister condemns mounting European Union criticism over a new homosexual and transgender law that he says protects children against pedophilia.
Viktor Orbán told Worthy News Thursday that the legislation forbids sharing with minors any content portraying homosexuality or sex reassignment, including in schools.
“The new Hungarian law” adopted this week “simply states clearly that only parents can decide on the sexual education of their children,” he said.
“Education in schools must not be in conflict with the will of parents; it must at most be supplementary. Its form and content must be clearly defined, and it must be subject to parental consent,” Orbán stressed.
He also defended limitations on discussing gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender (LGTB) issues in media. “Parents also rightly expect that on platforms used by our children, pornography, sexuality for its own sake, homosexuality and gender reassignment programs should not be available.” Orbán added that “These restrictions must also be defined with surgical precision.”
His comments came after several European leaders suggested punishing Hungary over the legislation. The prime minister of Belgium, where the EU has its headquarters, said Thursday that the EU should introduce financial measures
Alexander De Croo told lawmakers that he believes that Hungary should face financial sanctions from the EU.
“The EU is not a cash machine from which you can withdraw money but then do not have to follow the rules,” he said, referring to billions of euros in EU aid that Hungary received. “Europe is a club with clear rules. So there must also be mechanisms that force members to respect certain rules,” De Croo argued.
In addition, thousands of Hungarians unsuccessfully protested against the law while leftist opposition parties boycotted the parliamentary session.
Critics say Orbán’s conservative Fidesz party, which voted for the law, wants to stigmatize the LGBT community by linking them to pedophilia.
However, Orbán wrote that while his government wants to protect minors, “in Hungary, no one has a say in how adults live their lives.”
The self-declared “illiberal” and Christian leader added: “In our view, a free adult should not have to give an account of his life in front of any secular authority — only before God when the time comes.”
He said that within the 27-nation EU, “They’re now setting off alarm bells across Europe over Hungary’s new laws to severely punish pedophiles and protect our children. Let’s face it, this movement is eternal, and its new slogan is no longer “Proletarians of the world, unite!” but “Liberals of the world, unite!”
He warned that “This, of course, reinforces the Central European conviction that today’s liberals are in fact communists with degrees.”
The Hungarian leader claimed that the “current left-wing campaign against Hungary is further proof that today, the left is the enemy of freedom. Because instead of freedom of speech, they want political correctness as defined by them, and hegemony of opinion instead of a pluralism of ideas.”
The new Hungarian law “does not conflict with any lofty ideals or European laws,” he argued. Orbán, who faces elections next year, says he wants to build Hungary on what he views as a Christian conservative and traditional family principles.
Hungary now has one of the strictest LGTB laws in the EU, while heavily Catholic Poland has also imposed restrictions.
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