Vienna has introduced gay-themed traffic lights in preparation for this month’s Eurovision contest, aiming to present the city as open-minded. Supporters also say the changes could improve road safety, attracting the attention of drivers and pedestrians.
A total of 120 pedestrian crossings in the city will be replaced with the new installations, which show male and female, as well as gay and lesbian couples in the standard colors of green and red.
According to Greens MP Maria Vassilakou, the move is designed to show how open-minded Vienna is. But the progressive effort comes at a cost of €63,000 (US$70,779).
It’s a figure that has infuriated some residents and right-wing politicians. The Freedom Party has announced it is lodging a criminal complaint against Vassilakou, saying the lights contravene traffic regulations and are a waste of taxpayers’ money.
“That’s our tax money – not your private play money! Couldn’t a better use for it have been found?” one person wrote in the comments section of Kronen Zeitung newspaper, The Local reports.
“There’s not enough money to help single parents or build new play parks but there seems to be plenty of money for senseless things,” another said.
But Vassilakou said the lights have another aim – to improve traffic safety. She said the city hopes the unusual images will attract the attention of drivers and pedestrians, thereby decreasing road accidents.
The implementation of the lights is part of a ‘test phase’ which will last until June. The city will then analyze data to determine whether the campaign helped traffic safety.
Last year, 22 children were injured at pedestrian crossings in the city.
It’s not the first time that traffic lights in Europe have been the source of controversy. Last year, the dominance of male figures in traffic lights in the western city of Dortmund sparked debate, with some politicians urging the city to pursue gender equality at pedestrian crossings.
In response, the German newspaper Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung proposed a light-hearted compromise – the introduction of traffic light couples. Although the suggestion wasn’t taken up in Germany, it seems Vienna was more than happy to oblige.
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Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils – 1 Timothy 4:1 (KJV).
Having eyes full of adultery, and that cannot cease from sin; beguiling unstable souls: an heart they have exercised with covetous practices; cursed children- 2 Peter 2:14 (KJV).
For when they speak great swelling words of vanity, they allure through the lusts of the flesh, through much wantonness, those that were clean escaped from them who live in error- 2 Peter 2:18 (KJV).
They are corrupt, and speak wickedly concerning oppression: they speak loftily – Psalm 73:8 (KJV).
How that they told you there should be mockers in the last time, who should walk after their own ungodly lusts – Jude 1:18 (KJV).
Lovers of Pleasure: “lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away” 2 Timothy 3:1-5 (KJV).
For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. But watch thou in all things, endure afflictions, do the work of an evangelist, make full proof of thy ministry – 2 Timothy 4:3-5 (KJV).
And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. And through covetousness shall they with feigned words make merchandise of you: whose judgment now of a long time lingereth not, and their damnation slumbereth not- 2 Peter 2:2-3 (KJV).
Romans 16:18 For they that are such serve not our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly; and by good words and fair speeches deceive the hearts of the simple – Romans 16:18 (KJV).