This article has been taken from Total Croatia News portal. The author is Forrest Stilin. You can access it here.
February 23, 2020 - Bakova povorka, the pinnacle of a 150-year tradition of carnival festivities in Imotski, Croatia was engulfed by scandal on Sunday afternoon when enthusiastic residents set fire to an effigy of a gay couple to widespread cheers.
Adopted Child Had Yugoslav Star on Forehead
Imotski residents chose to feature a gay couple with an adopted child, which had a five-pointed star on his forehead (resembling that of the Yugoslav flag) for the central carnival figure. They eventually set that effigy on fire and burned it to the ground to the cheers of onlookers.
“Like it or not, but this is abnormal for us, but everyone has the right to be whatever they want,” they proclaimed to onlookers.
It’s also worth noting that the child doll, with the five-pointed star on his forehead and being held by the effigy of the gay couple, had the face of SDP (Social Democratic Party) MP Nenad Stazić. Earlier this year, it was reported that Stazić had under-estimated the value of his apartment on his property assessment. The effigy of the gay couple was followed by a group of children from kindergarten in the parade.
‘We are a conservative society’
"My head is spinning from this culture of death, and since my body is ailing, this year let’s set this grotesque family with baby Nenad Stazić on fire," the announcer proclaimed. Then, “Play the music" was heard as they ignited the effigy to wild cheers and applause.
When Slobodna Dalmacija asked Milivoj Đuka, president of the "Bako Ceremony Cultural Society" (KD Bakove svečanosti), for comment on February 23, 2020; he explained:
“We are a conservative society, and are sticking by tradition. Give a child to a mother, as the saying goes. We think this is the right thing to do,” Đuka claimed.
In an interview for Imotski Online on February 7, 2020; the festival's organizer had previously indicated that the main character of the parade would remain a secret.
"I can't reveal it to you. I can only say that everyone will understand who and what it is about," Đuka pointed out.
According to a recent poll conducted by HRT (Croatia Radio Television); 63.7 percent of respondents are against allowing same-sex couples to be foster parents.
Croatia Parade Included Masks of Elvis Presley, Cleopatra, Josipa Lisac
Đuka made sure that there were as many masks as possible in the parade, all of which were made in homes throughout the town. Visitors also saw Nutcrackers, Cellists, Elvis Presley and his band, Flowers as well as individual masks of Cleopatra, and Pirates. In addition, there were homemade renderings of Croatia diva, Josipa Lisac, inspired by her performance at the inauguration of the new President.
The parade featured adorable groups like little lambs from the Kindergarten Ball, students from Imotski elementary schools, and many others.
Members of the HPO Gradske glazbe Imotski (HPO Imotski Town Music Group), performed cheerful carnival songs for more than a thousand Imotski residents and their guests.
Croatian leaders and citizens condemn effigy burning. MP Arsen Bauk files charges against event organizers.
This event is most likely connected to the decision made by The Croatia Constitutional Court to allow same-sex couples in Croatia to have the right to be foster parents on the same terms as everyone else.