Pussy Riot Found Guilty! Femme Punk Rockers Learn Russia Is Still Like Russia!

On February 21st, three members of the Russian punk-rock collective known as Pussy Riot pulled off a guerrilla performance in Moscow’s Cathedral of Christ the Saviour. They did a 40-second performance where they asked the Virgin Mary to protect Russia from the old-fashioned censorious ways of President Vladimir Putin—inspired by the church’s own constant campaigning for Putin. A video of the performance went viral. In America, that would get somebody a record deal. In the Russia of President Putin, it got Nadezhda Tolokonnikova, Yekaterina Samutsevich, and Maria Alyokhina arrested for hooliganism. There was a big show trial, with Putin publicly requesting leniency even while his lackeys went after the gals in court. The three gals slowly became international punk-rock heroines, with Madonna recently risking overseas wrath by openly supporting Pussy Riot during her Russian concerts. Sadly, this saga just ended with the three gals being found guilty of “hooliganism”—which, in Putin’s Russia, has landed each of them a two-year jail sentence.  [image via wikipedia]

The protests have begun in Russia, and that’s pretty brave in itself. Putin doesn’t like disagreement. Pussy Riot had a lot of support before the verdict, too. Here’s another look at pics that tell a pretty weird tale, ranging from editorial cartoons to  shots of brave Pussy fans to photos from the band’s other guerrilla shows. You’ll also see Nadezhda, Yekaterina, and Maria refusing to be solemn and repentant in court. Nadezhda gets a lot of attention in the pics, since the 22-year-old is considered the leader of Pussy Riot. The philosophy student is well known as an activist, too, beginning when Nadezhda—along with her husband Pyotr Verzilov—held an orgy in a Moscow museum to protest the 2008 election of Putin’s handpicked replacement in the Kremlin. Check out the true face of defiant punk rock in the face of real oppressive authority…

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