According to the Daily Beast, Vadim Shumkov, governor of the Kurgan region, cited Black American music stars as the reason behind the collapse of Russian society.
In a post on his official Telegram channel, Shumkov described a gaping hole at the center of Russian culture, which he believes is due to “an underestimation of the importance of native national culture.”
“Many of our children… are already growing up without knowing or remembering their kindred tribe,” he wrote, adding that they are instead “singing songs written by the descendants of African-American slaves, often playing the ape and imitating the habits and language, brimming with, frankly, second-rate quasi-cultural vulgarity. Clinging to this secondariness, being proud of it.”
“Hence the growth of overt spiritual emptiness, depression, suicides. The lack of meaning in life,” Shumkov said.
Though Shumkov’s remarks were widely criticized on social media, the Russian State Duma defended his post.
Alexander Sholokhov, the deputy chairman of the State Duma Committee on Culture, told local media that Shumkov's post wasn't offensive because he’d used the term “African-American.”
“I think that depression is connected with the lack of ideology in our country,” Sholokhov said. “I disagree with [allegations of] incitement. He used the word African American. The governor acted more than politically correct, using literally the American version to designate this race, and besides… this same African-American culture occupies a significant part of show business and variety shows.”