Thursday, 26 February 2009

The Sexual Cleansing Of Iraq

Most of us LGBTs have heard of what has been going on in Iraq... Maybe it's time we did something?

Watch the video:

Read the Peter Tatchell comment.

Get involved... before it's too late.

This blogger works for nothing but the joy of writing but always appreciates things bought from his wishlist

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

The Rights Of Parents In The Education System

To be honest I feel everything comes down to money, and who is paying it. Even the ever present controversy over teaching about homosexuality in state schools. Personally I find the views of parents opposed to such teaching baffling.

Homosexuality is real. Almost everyone will have dealt with the issue on a personal basis (be it explore it, have a gay friend, meet a gay person or simply see depictions of it on the television) by early adulthood. It is a real thing and something children should thus be taught about. Just as one introduces children to the basics of mathematics, science, language and history from an early age, we should also introduce children to the diversity of relationships and lifestyles they will encounter in the course of their lives.

The idea of with holding information from children is, to be frank, idiotic. There's no point having publicly funded schools if we aren't going to teach them everything possible. Of course I'm not suggesting they learn about the mechanics of sex at the age of 5, but then again I'm not suggesting one teaches them the full horror of the Second World War at that age either. But it's good to lay a groundwork so that when they are taught about sex it is within the framework of a complex world of relationships just as when the Holocaust is taught it is helpful to have an understanding of the basics of the Second World War.

People don't complain about Horrible Histories like The Rotten Romans or the Vicious Vikings (in all their gory, dirty detail) so why complain about "And Tango Makes Three"? Schools are paid for collectively and thus must serve us all collectively. If parents wish to have the right to stop certain subjects, which our elected Government sees fit to allow, then I suggest they stop their anti gay campaigning and start campaigning for an end to publicly funded schools and the National Curriculum. I don't agree the country would benefit from such a move, but it would be the only logical way of then allowing parents to send children to schools which brainwash them in a way more to their liking.

Now in reply to this article...

by Andrew Hibbard - The Parent Organisation Ltd
The value of marriage has been eroded in the past decade and the emphasis switched to same-sex relationships and single parenthood.

Erm... you're point being?

Schools now teach children as young as five that both are acceptable, although neither is condoned by any religion.

Oh you're a God botherer, makes sense. You do understand that being condoned by a religion isn't all it's cracked up to be? Public execution, slavery and genocide are all condoned in the Bible. Hardly a ringing endorsement of religious endorsement!

Schools call it 'relationship' education. It is the start of sex education.

Whereas teaching them marriage isn't? I thought marriage was all about sex (joke)! Used to be you could get your marriage annulled if you hadn't done the nasty. And homosexual relationships are not just all about sex. A bit like marriage, it's complicated!

Why teach them?
Infant school children are not naturally racist or homophobic.

No it takes religious/bigoted parents and teachers to make them so.

If they make comments, they rarely understand them. Why teach them?

And there I was thinking schools were all about educating people who don't understand things... that's why we teach them!!

Homosexual subject matter may be suitable for older primary school children but by age 10 most would see a story of two male penguins hatching an egg as nothing but childish fiction.

Yes totally fictional, except in the real world... and are you saying that because a story is completely fictional it has no moral value, nor ability to educate? If so then I think an entire educational tradition of fables and parables just went out the window. Jesus taught in fucking parables!

Last year my 10-year-old announced he had been shown in class how to put on a condom.

Why did he need to know? It is irrelevant and inappropriate.

Well last I checked one day he will be a man and may just need a condom. It's a life skill.

It is not appropriate to teach infants about homosexuality any more than it is appropriate to show 15-year-olds graphic images of genitalia and oral sex – images stronger than they can see legally outside the classroom.
There is huge inconsistency in sex education - some schools go much too far while others barely touch it.

Imagine! Showing 15 year olds pictures of genitalia when they are meant to be learning what to do with... genitalia... next they will be showing cross sections of rivers when talking about sediment in geography or, heaven forbid, reading books in English Literature.

Consistency is important, but why has government not sought the views of parents?
Why do some organisations want five-year-olds taught about sex?
It can come as little surprise that having been shown, in detail, how to do sex, and given access to free contraception, morning after pills and abortions without their parents' knowledge or consent, that teenagers get pregnant.

I hardly think the books mentioned teach 5 year olds about sex. Again Mr Hibbard is allowing his sick ideas of what homosexuality is to rule his brain. Because that is what they are, Mr Hibbard is sexually obsessed with homosexuality as are most homophobes. It's disgusting that he then infers the same obsession onto innocent children.

Plus free contraception and morning after pills are causing teenagers to get pregnant????? This is as bad as the stuff stupid "MMR" jabs cause autism crazies say. It makes no logical sense!

Tuesday, 24 February 2009

What Do You Tell Your Children??

Some parents are worried about how to explain a television presenters lack of hand (she was born with only one)

But a minority of parents expressed concern that Ms Burnell's appearance was "scaring" children. One father said he feared it would give his daughter nightmares and a mother said her two-year-old girl could not watch because she thought the presenter had been hurt.

If you're daughter gets nightmares because someone is somehow different to her, then you are already bringing her up badly.

If a child asks "Mummy, why does that lady only have one hand?" you say "Because she was born with only one hand. Not everyone is born exactly the same, and that is why this world is so interesting." Simple.

Saturday, 21 February 2009

What Has New Labour Ever Done For Us?

Undoubtedly, the 1997 election of New Labour into Government was welcomed throughout the country. The Tories has simply outstayed their welcome and although they'd started to fix their mistakes the problems of the early nineties still loomed large in public perceptions. And New Labour has done much to make this country better (although these achievements escape me right now). But as someone who, despite being a Lib Dem, has supported much of the New Labour Governments I feel totally disappointed with the last 12 years.

1. The reform of the House of Lords. What was the point of getting rid of the hereditary peers without completing the reform? It has created a weak, Government padded chamber unable to perform the function of reviewing legislation nor act as a check on executive power. Half hearted, lukewarm and unfinished initiatives seem to be the hallmark of the New Labour movement.

2. Devolution. A very "British solution". i.e. it's a total hodge podge of a compromise. I understand the urge for devolution. But what has happened is a confusing and unstable restructuring of the very fabric of our Union. Rather than seeking a sensible solution of referendums for the entire country (shocking) and then implementing a quasi-federal structure, New Labour have just bolted on extra bits of complication to our messy unwritten constitution. It's upset a great number of people across the country and really leaves no one happy. The nationalists want more, the unionists want less and the English just want something. Personally I believe the way they have handled the implementation of devolution has created the basis for the collapse of our country. Sad but true.

3. Gay rights. Wow I thought as Labour took a hatchet to the unequal age of consent and Section 28; here's a Government that truly believes in equality for the LGBT community. How wrong I was. Yet another hodge podge occurred with the introduction of Civil Partnerships.

i) Civil Partnerships have created an apartheid on marriage rights. Separate but equal. Again this doesn't please the religious crazies the Government was trying to appease and it leaves the LGBT community with different rights to their straight friends and family.
ii) By creating this situation they have pretty much made the likelihood of the introduction of gay marriage any time in the future (and I'm talking long term) nil. Plus that introduction will be complicated by the pre existence of civil partners whose status will make it very difficult to bring in gay marriage without voiding or damaging their new found rights. It would have been better if they'd just left well alone and allowed a Government with more balls the chance to implement a more equal institution.
iii) A deeply Catholic country can introduce gay marriage (Spain). An African nation can introduce gay marriage mere years after ending racial apartheid (South Africa). And a former Himalayan Hindu kingdom can begin the process of introducing it (Nepal). Yet we here in the supposedly advanced UK can't do it. What a flipping embarrassment.

4) Civil rights. The people of this country have lost more rights in the last 12 years than ever before, outside of the World Wars. Disgusting.

5) Foreign perception and diplomatic clout. Are stupid, unnecessary intervention in Iraq has damaged our reputation just as much as the Suez Crisis (which we didn't recover from until the 80s!) and, worse, took the heat off of the Afghanistan campaign allowing the Taliban to survive. Tony Blair should be unable to operate on an international level, and it is deeply concerning people still take that God bothering, war mongering idiot seriously.

I'm going to say it: Labour has been in power too long. Bring back the Tories. All is forgiven. I feel sick saying it but it has to be said. New Labour has failed.

Friday, 20 February 2009

What Exactly Is Wrong With Polygamy (and the rest)?

Another person moaning about polygamy, and how others choose to live their lives.

What exactly is wrong with consensual polygamy/polymory etc?

"There has to be a culture change and that has to brought about by policy makers taking a very clear stance on this issue, saying that in this country, one married man is allowed to marry one woman," she added.

Yes there does need to be a culture change, one where women are empowered to stand up to requests/coercion to do something they don't want to do and where everyone is free from religious stupidity. Attacking polygamy is missing the point, the problem of people being forced to do things against their will goes across allsorts of issues. Young men and women forced into arranged marriages, women forced into doing things they don't want to do and children forced to live with the unhappy consequences.

Tackle disempowerment and religious dogma but dictating the way someone wishes to live their life isn't the way to go about things.

Womens rights are human rights. Women should be free to choose how they wish to live. That is the most important thing surely?

Thursday, 19 February 2009

Banning Dissent?

When Geert Wilders was banned from the UK, because he might incite hatred against a certain group and this create a public disturbance, I felt a wave of discomfort come over me. What was being said was "we are so fucking scared that a bunch of violent extremists might be so upset at what he preaches that they might cause trouble". And to avoid that the UK Government decided to remove the freedom of movement of an elected representative of an EU state within the EU. Unless he was calling for death to all Muslims then I can't see why he was banned. The reggee singers who preach murder against homosexuals have not been banned, so why him???

But now the Government has gone a step further banning the Phelps of Westboro Baptist Church, famous firstly for, from entering the UK to protest a play. So probably homegrown religious crazies are ok to protest against Jerry Springer The Musical and get it stopped but it's not ok for these folks to come over from America and try the same thing?? How does that make sense? As a gay man I beg for the Government to rethink this decision (not that they read this nor that my feelings will ever reach their ears). We should have the right to confront the Phelps, not just the lesser members of the WBC, here in this country and show them that their hatred is NOT the way forward. Whilst they celebrate the death of homosexuals, and others, they do not actively encourage violence or murder. And unlike some other minority groups it is unlikely their precence will push our countries now rather integrated LGBT community into acts of general violence. So what is the reason for banning them???

At least my favourite person has his brain switched on:

Peter Tatchell, from gay rights group OutRage!, said: "The Phelps are odious, homophobic bigots. They give Christianity a bad name.

"Objectionable though they are, I don't agree with them being banned but since the Home Secretary banned the Dutch MP Geert Wilders at least she is being consistent by also banning these Christian preachers of hate.

"It makes it all the more odd that the Home Secretary has not banned Jamaican reggae singers who incite the murder of gay people.

"Why are they allowed in to the country but not the Phelps?

"Inciting murder is even worse than inciting hatred. Why the double standards?"

I think the site Phags for Phelps has the right idea... allow them the freedom to spout their nonsense because every word shows homophobia up for what it is... STUPID.

Saturday, 14 February 2009

Unionists Shame

God darn it. Don't you hate civil servants and their stupid ideas. They proposed "solutions" to stopping Scotland laying claim to the North Sea oil fields. They suggested even sowing a movement for independence in the Orkney's and the Shetland's.

I am, as you all well know, a unionist (small u) and believe in the continuation of the Union. But I do not believe in treating those in northern Britain with suspicion or fear nor in treating them as vassals. It should not even have crossed the minds of the British civil servants to consider a situation where an independent Scotland might lay claim to the fields and suggests a level of cynicism, English nationalism and bad faith in the higher echelons of our Government.

That is disgusting. And when I share the same opinion as the leader of the SNP, we all know it has to be pretty darn awful a thing to have brought our opinions into alignment.

The Union is surely doomed if people in positions of power fail to respect the unity of our island and instead try to put one regions rights above another. As always I find myself more and more disheartened at the prospects for the survival of our country for many more years. Let me be the first to say that if our Union does fail I am starting the Kentish Nationalists movement to try to ensure we don't end up dominated by the sorts of career civil servants who come up with stupid ideas like those released today who seem to be so prevalent in London.

Thursday, 12 February 2009

Dutch MP Thrown Out Of The UK

Cabinet Office minister Liam Byrne said, on BBC One's Question Time: "This guy wasn't coming here to exercise his right of free speech. This guy was trying to come here in order to sow division between us in this country.

"Everything I've heard about this guy tells me he's a bigot and the right place for him is to stay at home."

Free speech can meaning sowing division. Having an opinion means sowing division. Another blow against freedom.

Tuesday, 10 February 2009

Such A Waste

Whilst Boris Johnson swoons over glamourous plans for post 2012 east London, including building thousands of new homes, Inside Housing reports the biggest rise in empty homes in 17 years. The Empty Homes Agency also reports that there's nearly a million empty homes throughout the UK as part of Inside Housing's campaign to increase awareness of the issue.

We have millions of people on housing waiting lists, we have thousands of the homeless, we have hundreds of thousands of empty houses blighting our neighbourhoods and all the time politicians are calling for ever more green spaces to be consumed in the bid to build new homes! Wouldn't it be more cost effective, and better for communities, to bring empty homes back into circulation and build only enough homes to meet the residual demand? I'm sure amazing savings could be made by using the money allocated for affordable homes on bringing these homes back up to scratch?

Why not sign the petition over at Number 10's website to show support for the three main principles:

VAT - a cut in VAT on repairs and maintenance to 5 per cent, to make it more attractive for owners to invest in an empty home, or for a potential buyer to make an offer

Grant – use cash from existing Homes and Communities Agency budget for social landlords to buy and repair long-term empty properties

Guidance – clearer advice from the government to help councils use Empty Dwelling Management Orders

Sunday, 8 February 2009

Bonuses??? Jesus, these folks are messed up...

I can't believe that:

1) the staff of RBS are so stupid as to expect bonuses at a time when the whole country is watching them so very closely. Stupid timing
2) the staff of RBS expect bonuses since they have so obviously failed to meet the requisite capitalist benchmarks (i.e. make money and do not collapse). No offense but if all the banks in the country had suffered the same fate I'd be more sympathetic but not all of them have which suggests bad management, and bad decisions which should mean no bonuses.
3) the Government didn't think to cap bonuses months ago.

Thursday, 5 February 2009

Carol Thatcher Deserved The Sack

I can't believe the Evening Standard has taken the editorial line that Carol Thatcher didn't deserve to be sacked because she issued a blanket apology, when it is becoming clear she didn't apologise when personally confronted by people offended by her words at the time she said them.

The BBC is an employer. When it's employees are on the job, even in break rooms or in this case "the green room", they are required to meet certain requirements. One of these is to avoid using offensive or discriminatory language. If I were to refer to a famous black person whilst at work in my break room as a "golliwog" the company I work for would be entitled, and required, to begin disciplinary procedures against me. If I was as high profile as Carol Thatcher then perhaps those discipliary procedures would simply compromise getting fired.

It's an open and shut case. I believe in freedom of speech, on your own time, where it does not bring the consequences of your speech down upon your employer. At work one is bound to follow the rules that hold sway.