Thursday, 24 November 2016

Gay Male Sexuality Is Under Attack From Without AND Within

There are racist gay men. This shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone, given racism is pretty entrenched across the human species. I once had to call an ex-boyfriend to come "rescue" me from a date with a man ranting on about how awful black people are. They are out there.

Owen Jones has written a comment piece on racism among gay men. Needless to say it has conflated some actual racism with some personal sexual preferences. When you are on a "dating" app (or back in the days of Gaydar for oldsters like me) you are presenting what you are and what you want out into the world in the hopes of finding others who share, or mirror, your desires. Perhaps you only want intelligent men for a long term relationship. Maybe you desire men with big arms for a fling. It could be you find only white men attractive. These are not necessarily stating you hate stupid people, people with smaller arms or non-white people. But it is saying that for the purposes of a relationship (or just sex) you have certain desires in mind.

Sexuality is a beautifully complex thing. I'm very much broad-minded about what I find attractive. I find a lot of looks, attitudes and minds attractive for many different reasons. But I also have a couple of "types" of men that I find EXTREMELY attractive. And a few (leather wearers beware) I find extremely unattractive. I couldn't change those desires even if I wanted to. So demanding that people become open to finding things attractive that they don't is a bit much. Should gay men starting trying to find women attractive as to not do so would be misogynistic? I think not!!!!

Unfortunately this sort of ludicrous suggestion helps others pretend racism doesn't exist. Focus on the real stigmas and racism going on out there and stop policing sexuality.

He also finds objectifying certain races problematic. I objectify men with big arms. I can thus quite understand someone objectifying men for another facet of their personality or appearance. The idea it is racist to find a certain skin tone attractive but okay to find only a certain gender attractive is messy at best.

Owen Jones is wandering extremely close to "conversion therapy" territory and towards suggesting male homosexuality itself is problematic. Must we all be pansexuals? Is that where we are heading? Is there no value in individuality?

People with similar mindsets also oppose the "culture" of muscle worship among gay men. This culture is much overblown, and is mainly limited to "the scene". Unfortunately many gay men in prominent positions are part of that scene and forget that out here in the real world male homosexuality is a lot more diverse. Considering muscle worship to be unhealthy due to the body image problems it may cause is a bit much when we encourage bear/cub culture at the same time.

The real issue is this sort of criticism has been internalised by many gay men who nod along in shame when some progressive comes along to browbeat them back into line. It is long past time we stop cow-towing to these puritanical busy-bodies who not only want to get into our bedrooms but want to get into our fantasises.

I would say "we didn't beat conservative busy-bodies only to allow progressive ones to control our sexuality" but can't as we haven't beat the conservative busy-bodies. Oh we thought we had but they've been quietly beavering away... Our Government has many plans to block porn, from adults as well as children, of which this is just the latest example.

If you don't want Christians telling you who to fuck, you'd better start stopping everyone else making similar demands. Otherwise we'll be back to the 1980s in no time at all.

Don't just nod ashamedly in the corner. Fight for the right to love and fuck however you damn well want to. Resist the puritans at every turn!

Sunday, 13 November 2016

With Friends Like These... The End Of Western Civilization Moves Ever Closer

Nigel Farage, a man unable to win a seat in Parliament after 7 attempts nor able to win Brexit without the help of Boris Johnson, got to spend an hour with Donald Trump this weekend. It is hard to imagine much more of a diplomatic slap in the face to Britain's Government (and to the United Kingdom itself) than this from the man soon to lead the US. Farage actively participated in hurting his own country's reputation, and took time to take holiday snaps.

But the supposed defenders of British values, Brexit supporters chief among them, will see this only as a victory for their fight against the status quo. They do not value Britain's history, institutions or ways of doing things. They don't value our power or reputation. They're revolutionaries intent on disrupting our constitutional arrangements.

The United Kingdom has come to a crossroads. On the left is Corbyn and his Labour party. They are quiet and meek in the face of opposition (see reserved support for Brexit and an attempt to paint Trump's victory as indicative of an up turn in Labour's own fortunes!) and far too friendly with Vladimir Putin (the dodgy leader of Russia who, if you haven't been paying attention, has been engaging in a war of aggression with Ukraine for the last couple of years). Corbyn's attempt to cheer up his troops this morning was to point out that they managed to HOLD a couple of council seats recently.

Meanwhile on the right we have a Tory party determined to take us out of the EU. They are no longer engaging with EU institutions, despite previous promises to keep working as part of the EU until the end. They've got no support in the US from the next administration, have sullied our relationships with our neighbours and aren't even that friendly with Putin. They've isolated us for no good reason.

And then on the far right we have Farage who has placed himself as Britain's unofficial ambassador to Trump alongside Marion Le Pen (of the French FN). Putin and Trump are fluttering their eyelashes at each other. A dark alliance is forming and the characters involved couldn't spell statesmanly, let alone act it.

I've always been a proud Brit. I've none of the usual liberal hang-ups about our imperial history. I fully support our actions in the Second World War and the Falklands War, warts and all. Dresden and the Belgrano were terrible, awful events but we didn't start those conflicts. I like Churchill, respect Thatcher and worship Her Majesty, the Queen. It takes a LOT to make me feel ashamed of our country.

But as we begin to align ourselves against our European friends and neighbours, and send out feelers towards Putin and Trump, I fear that rather than finding ourselves in peril (as I thought we would be after Brexit) we may well BE the peril.

For the first time in my life my loyalties lie outside this country, with the people of continental Europe. The Tories and Labour are weak and morally suspect. UKIP has lost the battle for votes but is winning the battle for hearts. The Lib Dems can mount a small resistance but aren't going to turn the tide. And the nationalists await to help kick us while we're down.

We're probably done for as a serious contender for a leader on the world's stage now. We're at risk of becoming a satellite state of the new Trump/Putin axis. For all their talk of defending Western civilization, the right have happily overseen it's decline. The left would only be too happy to see the back of it too.

I've got no answers. No solutions. This re-alignment seems to be inevitable. Europe has a great many issues to overcome (the rise of the right, the idiocy of the social justice obsessed far-left, uncontrolled immigration, democratic deficit). I'm unsure if it'll be able to survive. But now I'm rooting for it to thrive as the liberal centre of the world. The continuation of our culture may well depend on it.

Saturday, 5 November 2016

Nothing Good Will Come Of Any Of This Brexit Nonsense

The referendum on whether to leave the EU is now over 4 months behind us. In its wake we had a Prime Minister resign, an opposition busy having a civil war, a Tory leadership "battle" that brought Theresa May to Number 10 and a seemingly endless division within our country.

Let's not look with rose-tinted glasses upon our nation's past. There has always been division and, as long as humans continue to inhabit these islands, there will always be division. We're hardly unique as a country. But we have usually succeeded in having reasonable people in positions of power (or at least in positions behind those with the power!) who have defended the basics of our Westminster system and appealed for calm rather than chaos (Thatcher, for example, was hardly blameless in the chaos of the Miners Strike but you can't say she wasn't looking for orderly obedience). At the same time we had sober voices in our press who'd grumble at any change to that system or perceived abuse of it. Tony Blair's use of the Parliament Act, for example, was hardly greeted with mass support from the majority of papers.

Now, however, the division that has followed in the wake of David Cameron's ill-conceived referendum has been allowed to fester with no real attempts at calming the increasing vitriol (from either "side") by those who should be leading us. Jeremy Corbyn, the man foolishly tasked with keeping those in power in check by the Labour party, hasn't got a clue about how to handle the responsibility he has. We're adrift and our country's moral compass appears to be left in the hands of the nastier members of the Tory party (and I mean that quite strongly in terms of their our personal morals being nasty, not just some vague dislike of the Tories there).

There have been those making some feeble calls for unity but those calls seem based on some idea that just calling for it will make it happen. Unity happens through absolute victory or through compromise. A 51/49 split at the referendum wasn't an absolute victory and "Brexit means Brexit" isn't exactly a compromise (nor is it very clear about what's up for negotiation).

When certain elements of the press call judges "Enemies of the People", the response from those who should be trying to unite and govern the country has been so abysmal as to suggest they probably agree. The Government doesn't even respect the supremacy of Parliament, preferring to deal completely behind the scenes and away from the scrutiny of even Leave backing Tory MPs.

The battle over Europe is, sadly, over. The referendum was lost by a whisker. No one was clever enough to put in any threshold better than 50%. But it was lost and the vote was to leave the EU. I'm strongly in favour of our membership of the EU but feel that the best place to express a desire to do so is at the next election. All we currently are is a barrier to the continued evolution of the EU and we should now leave to put an end to the confusion. I think that is the wrong thing to do, but the only reasonable thing to do at the same time.

The battle for Britain has now begun. I don't seek some silly unity based on everyone just pulling together for the public good. This isn't the same country that fought in the Second World War. We're a series of interwoven but extremely different communities. All of us pulling together isn't going to happen. But the reasonable people of all hues could do so, if a compromise of some sort can be agreed. Something needs to happen to protect this country from falling into some very dark times indeed.

 Unfortunately, I don't see there's much will within the current leadership of this country to make any sort of attempt to heal some of the wounds. In fact I don't see any real national leadership at all. Anti-intellectual, anti-liberal, anti-British elements seem to have infected our country from top to bottom. I know MANY people who are so angry, just as a general rule, that they'd welcome economic collapse or war rather than compromise on their ideological position. Death threats and calls for "Purges" aren't limited to the crazies either.

We're in the middle of a crisis. We've got no leader worth the title (with no offence meant to Her Majesty, who I'm sure would do a pretty good job. Just a shame she actually does value our constitutional arrangements and would never dream of interfering, God love her). We have a complete lack, across all stratas of society, of any urge to kept this country together or prosperous. We're up shit creek and no one is going to use the paddle because that might upset the direction of travel.

This United Kingdom has been one of the greatest countries ever to come into being on this Earth. Scoff at that if you wish but our influence remains great even in our old age. We are the country of Gladstone and Churchill. Of Victoria and Thatcher. Of Wellington and Montgomery. Of Shakespeare and Austen. And now, in what may become one of the darkest times of our history, we can't seem to step back from the abyss nor rediscover the better angels of our nature. Where is the leadership we need to get us through the storms ahead?

It is sad to see us turning into a disgraceful excuse of a nation and even sadder to see nationalism on the rise ready to destroy our Union. If you believe in a God, now is probably about the right time to start praying. If you don't, then hold tight and hope for salvation.