Aug 272011
 

 

Another year, another Pride parade / day / party / celebration / farrago / fiasco …

 

Didn’t it all used to be so much simpler? I remember just five years ago, living in London at the time, it was a foregone conclusion that I, along with a selection of my closest friends, would be waking FAR too early on the Saturday in question, hopping on an-overflowing-with-gays train (plus the obligatory, sole, confused pensioner who had NO idea what was going on!) and sallying forth to London-sur-mer for the day’s festivities. Fifty-five minutes – and usually a couple of cocktails – later, we would have arrived, and the day would be glorious; from the practically guaranteed perfect Summer’s day, to the atmosphere of ribald mirth and cheerful fun, to the selection of music, entertainment and even shopping. What more could a poof desire?!

 

Now, however, the sheen seems to have gone. The last two years have beendisappointing. Whether itdue to the less-than-spectacular weather, or the media attention which seemed to presage failure, or possibly my familiarity with the city breeding contempt, donknow. Perhaps Isimply getting older growing up, and standing around in field for 4 hours isnmy thing anymore.

 

Actually, that never was my thing; I was born middle-aged and never really took to the joys of youth. (Youths, yes; youth, no!)

 

Nonetheless, something about the atmosphere of Brighton Pride always managed to help me overlook that and enjoy myself, ravening hordes and barking dogs notwithstanding!

 

So, I’m left pondering the question posed – what sort of Pride would I like this year? Successful, yes, though how you define that may as well be the same question, differently framed!

 

Do I want the parade? Yes – though I often miss it, alcohol NOT being to blame for this, I still value it as a reminder of why we have Pride in the first place!

 

What of the park? To my mind, it’s scarcely conceivable that Pride might happen without the celebration culminating in the park! My experience, as the travelling Londoner, was always and entirely at the park, the two ideas being inseperable in my thoughts! I realise others feel differently; they should get their own columns!

 

And what of the the week of community events leading up to the “big day”? I must confess, they rarely impinge upon my thoughts – I could for myself happily see them fall by the wayside. However, they’re not really up for discussion in the way that other, more obvious targets are; they’re not some monolithic entity, which stands or falls as one. Even if more than half of these events folded, others would remain and still more rise up to take their places. They neither operate under, nor require, the formal approval of Pride.

 

Let’s just keep it simple, shall we? Parade, Park, Party. No more politicking, sniping or in-fighting in the community – we’re going to face enough enemies without in the years to come, without fighting the enemies within! 


May 242011
 

This is an obscene transgression of the established constitutional settlement of the UK – and no-one notices!?!?!

The “UK Parliamentary Sovereignty Bill”, currently before Parliament, purports to be able to bind this Parliament’s successors, specifically in Sections 2 and 4:

2 Legal instruments

No Minister of the Crown shall make or implement any legal instrument which—

(a)is inconsistent with this Act; or

(b)increases the functions of the European Union affecting the United
Kingdom

without requiring it to be approved in a referendum of the electorate in the United Kingdom

4 Royal Assent

No Bill shall be presented to Her Majesty the Queen for her Royal Assent which contravenes this Act or amends this Act or which purports so to do except and until the Bill, having been approved by both Houses of Parliament, has also been approved in a referendum of the electorate in the United Kingdom pursuant to an Act of the United Kingdom Parliament.

How?! How can this Parliament modify the method by which a future Parliament can pass a bill into law?

Simple answer; it can’t! If it could, then the entire basis of the rule of law in our system would fall apart! It sickens me that nothing is being done to stop this farrago proceeding, and more so, that there is next-to-no publicity surrounding this bill. Pandering of the worst sort to the most moronic factions of the Daily Mail & Telegraph brigades.

Sickening.

Jun 012010
 

Have had so very much to say, that I’ve not been able to select anything in particular to expound upon. So, I haven’t.

A no-particular-order list of things that have been on my mind:

  • David Laws is an utter tit head – you might want to keep your private life private, but that’s not the way to do it – especially since you have no NEED for the money, you should just have claimed nothing, and no-one would have looked into it! Tit!
  • CameronClegg – ugh, it’s sickening, and smug, and I’m still afraid of what it will mean.
  • Labour Leadership – well, I support David Miliband for the leadership, but hope the contest WILL be open and lead to a reinvigoration of the party root and branch.
  • Health – I’m still struggling with getting my asthma under control, but am hopeful that the latest addition to the medication panoply will make a difference. Fingers very much crossed!
  • Life direction – we have possibly reached a decision which will give both of us new direction, but any more than that will have to wait ….
Apr 092010
 

Yes, I’m worried about the outcome – cards on the table time, I’m staunchly pro-Labour, and think Gordon Brown has been treated despicably by the media at large. I’m not blind to the problems that have occurred, and I’m certainly not going to attempt to justify the Iraq Invasion as some sort of legal war – however, major cock up though that may have been, it’s one glitch. Overall, both Tony Blair and Gordon Brown have led a government whose focus has always been fairness, improving the lot of everyone and – crucially from my point of view – a serious commitment to LGBT / gay rights.

Let’s take a moment to look at what that has involved:

Since Labour became Government, it has:

  • achieved an equal age of consent;
  • ended the ban on LGBT people serving in our armed forces;
  • ended discrimination against Lesbian & Gay partners for immigration purposes;
  • given LGBT individuals and couples the right to adopt children;
  • scrapped the homophobic Section 28 (Clause 2a in Scotland);
  • become a signatory of the Treaty of Amsterdam, which gave the EU powers to end discrimination on the grounds of sexual orientation;
  • banned discrimination in the workplace and in vocational training with the introduction of the Employment Equality (Sexual Orientation) Regulations;
  • created the Equality and Human Rights Commission (EHRC) which gives LGBT people statutory body protection;
  • included homophobia in the definition of hate crimes;
  • increased sentencing for homophobic hate crimes;
  • removed outdated offences such as gross indecency and buggery;
  • produced and implemented the Gender Recognition Act, allowing Trans people to have their true gender recognised in law;
  • created the Civil Partnerships, allowing LGB people to have their loving relationships recognised by law and have most of the same benefits as married couples;
  • outlawed discrimination in good and services (with no exceptions);
  • launched a campaign in the UN for the Decriminalisation of Homosexuality focusing on the nine countries where it is still punishable by death;
  • awarded statutory rights for fertility treatment for Lesbians on the NHS.

A quick visit to mygayvote will show the difference between the Tories’ voting record and that of the Lib Dems and Labour. How any person in the LGBT community could vote for the Tories remains an utter mystery to me – a veneer of presentability, Cameron’s chameleonic adapting of whatever “position” or “belief” seems best to increase his chances of attaining power, and the great swathes of dark, evil, bigoted, hate filled, selfish and closed-minded members of the same old nasty party … is there no gratitude for what has been done by this Government? No recognition that in some cases past performance MAY be an indicator of future performance in this case? The Tories, the party of discrimination, of special interests, of greed-is-good politics, versus the Labour party which has consistently championed and supported us.

So, please vote – and as a preference, please vote LABOUR!

(With thanks to Trevor Love)
Mar 062010
 

Canada Dry, by Adam Highway

“We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”
Bull.
Even the framers of that oft-quoted document didn’t really believe what they had written, or at least, not in the way that we today would. So what DOES equality actually mean? Is it a fluid, evolving, abstract thing, whose nature changes over time? Or is it an absolute, an ideal towards which we grope, blindly and optimistically? Are we destined always to live in some Orwellian dystopia, in which all are equal, but some are more equal than others?
Probably not, but it’s a thought!
Do we even want equality? After all, to be equal to is to be the same as something; perhaps we ought to strive rather for parity, or even more prosaically, fairness? Equity rather than equality? Or do we instead accept that equality has come to mean something other than its etymology would suggest, and that this is a commonly agreed and understood meaning? Probably the latter – after all, equality is also the goal between the sexes, though nobody is likely to consider men and women to be the same. (Unless very drunk!)
For my part, I know what I mean by equality. It means a world in which there is no country where it is illegal for my partner and me to share a bed. It means a world in which religious tolerance no longer means sexual intolerance. It means a world in which no person ever has to stop to think whether it is safe, before holding the hand of, or kissing, the person they love. It means a world in which, when Stephen Gately died, Jan Moir’s article, if even written, would have been regarded as, at best, the peddling of prurient and salacious gossip, and at worst as unacceptably insensitive, rude, inappropriate and utterly beyond the pale.
It means, I suppose, a world in which such well-intentioned documents as the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the United States’ Bill of Rights, the United Kingdom’s Equality Act and the European Convention on Human Rights are considered outdated.
Equality will finally come when we no longer need anti-discrimination legislation, because the attitudes which they exist to combat have become archaic, and utterly unimaginable.
Equality isn’t being told that you can’t think, say or do something “wrong”. Equality is when nobody would even want to think, say or do that something in the first place.

——————————–

From http://www.gscene.com/ – March 2010

Canada Dry March 2010

Jan 032010
 

Just realised that I might be an alcoholic, the nice kind of drunk really…..limiting myself to weekend drinking only, I suppose that’s worse than drinking everyday, well, according to the DAILY MAIL!! SO, binge drinking is “EVIL”, drinking everyday is “WRONG” and I will  DIE if I do not eat my 5 a day! YIKES!! WHAT IS WRONG WITH THIS WORLD!! ??

When did we give up control of our lives to the media, politicians and so-called health experts etc? Am I an average drinker? Healthy eater? Gym junkie? ordinary human being or am I in a tunnel of  MASS disorder and a frenzy of  hype….I DONT KNOW!! I suppose most of us adore the comfort of knowing that somewhere out there, another human being is in control, even when we hate this fact immensly!!

I, on the other hand, bloody hate giving up control over my thoughts and actions, and I want to know that what I do is purely my own choice and I will live with the consequences THANK YOU VERY MUCH!!
It’s like cleaning the house! DO NOT tell me to do it, I want to make that choice, when I want to, and the job will be done!!  ITS MY BLOODY LIFE!! Now, another glass of wine is in order and then a smoke and I might wash up in my box-kitchen….

 Posted by at 5:02 pm on 03/01/2010