Unfortunately as more and more countries embrace the LGBT community there are still large numbers where this could lead to prosecution.
This year, the home of the biggest sporting event in the world is one of those countries where being part of or celebrating the LGBT community becomes an issue.
In Russia, displaying the iconic rainbow flag has been banned, with it being well-documented that attitudes towards sexuality in the country remain largely archaic and dangerous.
However, a Spanish digital ad agency called LOLA MullenLowe recently teamed up with FELGTB, Spain’s federation for LGBT rights, to protest the ban in a creative way that embraces this year’s World Cup.
“When Gilbert Baker designed the rainbow flag in 1978, he did so to create a symbol and an icon for the LGTB community. A symbol, recognisable across the world, that people could use to express their pride.
Unfortunately, 40 years later, there are still countries in which homosexuality is persecuted, sometimes even by jail sentences, and in which the rainbow flag is forbidden.
Russia is one of these countries.”
In Russia it’s illegal to display the LGBT pride flag. So during the #WorldCup these 6 football fans have formed a hidden rainbow flag with their soccer jerseys, to protest Russia’s discriminatory laws in plain sight. #HiddenFlag ✊🏳️🌈 pic.twitter.com/I6uvYztGlR
— Jason Ball (@jasonballau) July 9, 2018
The Hidden Flag project has made use of World Cup shirts, ordering them in a way that matches the rainbow flag and capturing the combination in a series of photos around the country.
Currently, displaying the flag in Russia can lead to fines or even arrest.
Which color is which team? pic.twitter.com/8TxILZ0Kyq
— RFE/RL (@RFERL) July 9, 2018
“Spain, The Netherlands, Brazil, Mexico, Argentina and Colombia. Six countries. Six brave LGBT activists, that together, form the flag that toured around iconic sites in Russia, traveling to every corner to fight against a struggle that will never be silenced.”