It’s the drainpipe that launched a thousand memes: the escape route utilized by József Szájer, who has resigned as an MEP and member of Hungary’s ruling rightwing Fidesz social gathering, as he tried to flee the scene after Belgian police raided a homosexual orgy he was attending.
After surfacing in web jokes and avenue artwork, it even made a cameo look within the Hungarian parliament on Monday, because the opposition MP Zoltán Varga brandished a size of drainpipe at Fidesz MPs throughout a parliamentary session.
“Look within the mirror … and in case you are horrified at what you see and need to escape, I’ve introduced you one thing acquainted,” he stated.
The drainpipe has change into a part of #Hungary’s political consciousness. MP Zoltan Varga of opposition DK, wielded one in parliament, telling Fidesz MPs: “God, nation, household, proper? Don’t fiddle. You are the government of public cash, cocaine & hookers. That is your actuality.” #Szajer pic.twitter.com/f5nmyOGMvT
— Eszter Zalan (@eszterz) December 7, 2020
Whereas Belgian police raided the social gathering as a result of it broke coronavirus rules, Szájer’s involvement triggered further controversy due to the anti-LGBTQ+ insurance policies of his authorities, headed by Viktor Orbán, the prime minister. Szájer had boasted of personally rewriting the structure in 2011 to outline marriage as an solely heterosexual establishment.
“You say ‘Household first’ – good slogan. However you overlook to say that when the household isn’t there, you’re taking part in orgies or visiting prostitutes,” stated Varga, referring to each the Szájer episode and an incident final yr when a prime regional Fidesz politician resigned after a video emerged of him collaborating in an orgy on a yacht.
The precise drainpipe concerned has been memorialised with a makeshift plaque mounted by Hungarians dwelling in Brussels, that includes a picture of Szájer’s face and an inscription in each English and Hungarian. “The political profession of József Szájer … ended right here when he tried to flee the authorities utilizing this gutter,” it learn.
In Rome, a mural of Szájer has appeared, provocatively toasting him as Hungary’s “new homosexual icon”, apparently the work of the Italian avenue artist Laika. “I desire a world the place even Szájer may be free to dwell his sexuality the best way he believes, with out hiding from the eyes of his personal social gathering,” the artist wrote on Instagram.
For Orbán’s authorities, the episode has been no laughing matter, and got here because the Hungarian prime minister threatens to veto the EU funds over plans to hyperlink some funds to a so-called rule-of-law mechanism.
Szájer admitted to attending “a home social gathering” and apologised to his household, although he claimed the medication had been planted on him. He has give up his job as an MEP and left Fidesz. Orbán stated Szájer’s actions have been “unacceptable and indefensible”.