Monday, 25 May 2015

Stock Photo Watch: Careful Now

A family whose image was used in a poster campaign by a group opposing gay marriage in the Irish Republic say they were "naive" about stock photo sites.

The photo had been placed on a website by a photographer in return for a free photo shoot, with the family's consent.

They told the BBC that while the Mothers and Fathers Matter group had legitimately used their image, they did not agree with its message...

"We got some lovely pictures and we agreed to let the photos to be added to stock. We were just unlucky this time," the father said.

In a statement released via Human Rights campaign group Amnesty International in Ireland the pair laid out their own views on the gay marriage debate, although as non-Irish citizens they were not involved in the vote.

"This family believes that everyone has a right to marry the person they love regardless of their gender," they said.

"And this family would vote Yes [in favour of legalising same sex marriage]."

Good for them.

Quick experiment: The most popular stock photo company is Getty Image's iStock

Search for 'gay' on their site and what comes up first as 'best match'...

Ivan Massow: So Hard

Ivan Massow has just launched a campaign to be selected as Conservative candidate for Mayor of London, yet here he is, sitting in the kitchen of his grand central London home – there is an Aga so large it could melt Greenland, and an island the size of… well, Greenland – telling me he has always found it harder to admit to being a Tory than to being gay.

Clearly he is not alone in this. Across the country there are people who would rather come out as gay than Conservative, and they’re completely heterosexual. “It’s always been a real problem for me because of the stigma it’s carried,” he says, very seriously. But Ivan, it’s not leprosy! “But it’s true! At the beginning of speeches I effectively have to apologise for being Conservative. Harder than coming out as gay was coming out as a Conservative.” ...

Dear reader, 

Can you help me - I've lost something.

The will to live...

Erm, can anyone tell me what Madame Massow means by this?

“Gay people are naturally quite conservative. Lots of gay people, they want low taxes and they don’t tend to use many state services [!] and they want to buy a house, and you know those things that they both get up to” – at this he puts his finger to his nostril and sniffs – “those things are quite Tory!”

If he means gay men and Tories both take a lot of cocaine, he moves in even more rarified circles than I thought.

PS The multi-millionaire, who is urging London businesses to pay a Living Wage, only pays his own campaign manager the minimum wage. Oops!

Will Young: Power Bottom Gear (Geddit!!?)

From the dead hand of Dan Wootton at the Sun.

It's Bank Holiday Monday, I might just go back to bed...

PS Will Yah was in the Independent on Saturday. If you can find one interesting quote in this, you're a better man than I.

Worst Cartoon Of All-Time: The Independent

The Independent.
The full horror of the utter shiteness of this has yet to fully sink in...

PS Crap art imitates a Fagburn piss-take?

Cartoon Of The Day: Martin Rowson

Martin Rowson, The Guardian.

Sunday, 24 May 2015

Morrissey Comes Out: For Gay Marriage

Behind you!!!
True To You.

What a loon.

Feel free to make up your own 'Morrissey's in Sydney right now' gags.

PS Will Never Marry.

Irish Marriage Referendum: Those Media Cliches In Full

And thousands cheered in celebration, gaily waving rainbow flags...

Let's not forget the politicians and campaigners who helped make this happen...

And the ones who didn't but still butt in...

Hectic scenes at Dublin Airport... #hometovote

Meme of these two dudes leaving a polling station...

Little old lady in a rainbow cardy...

But #VoteNo campaigners were also out in force...

Obligatory gay media sentimental twaddle involving a kid; 'heartwarming', 'adorable' etc etc..

And those all important supporting tweets from celebs...

And finally, a rainbow appeared over the streets of Dublin...

George Osborne: No Tongues

GEORGE OSBORNE was so convinced that the Tories would not win an outright victory in the general election that he offered to give Lynton Crosby a French kiss if they got a majority.

The chancellor made the bizarre pledge to the Conservative campaign chief on election day as senior Tories tried to predict whether David Cameron would be returning to Downing Street.

When Cameron stormed to an unlikely win, Osborne was forced to “consummate” his promise but withdrew his pledge, as one senior Tory put it, to give the architect of the campaign “a proper snog”.

The chancellor planted a kiss on Crosby’s cheek in front of Cameron and fellow strategist Jim Messina when they met in No 10 on the morning after their triumph.

Crosby said: “It’s true. His aftershave still haunts me. Fortunately tongues remained withdrawn. The pledge was on election day. The consummation was the day after at No 10.” ...

The Sunday Times.

I guess if you went to a posh school you find this sort of thing 'bloody hilarious'.

George Michael Watch: Reclusive Star Being Reclusive - Exclusive!

FRIENDS fear for troubled George Michael as he becomes a near “recluse”.

Close pals expressed concern for the former Wham! singer after he skipped the wedding of Spice Girl Geri Halliwell last week.

Despite planning a comeback it is now 615 days since George, 51, was pictured in public — and 949 days since his last performance.

A friend revealed: “We think George may be in a pretty bad way. He’s living like a recluse.

“He was invited to Geri’s wedding because they used to be so close.

“But he’s incredibly nervous about leaving the house and it seems he’s lost all his confidence — maybe because he’s put on a bit of weight.”

The last reported sighting of George was a year ago when paramedics took him to hospital from his North London mansion with a mystery illness.

Then last June The Sun on Sunday revealed he said he had stopped smoking dope after health scares.

Last night George’s spokeswoman said: “I’m pleased to say he is on good form.

“Following the success of the Symphonica album he decided to take some time for himself and is currently considering and working on new projects.”

Basically The Sun is very concerned they haven't heard much of a peep from George since he was last touring or had a record to promote, but you know... MYSTERY ILLNESS! HEALTH SCARES!!!

Ireland: Their Sunday Papers

Via Tom Hayes. x

Fagburn doesn't think a question of equal rights should have gone to a referendum, but loves the way this says to homophobes... OI! YOU'VE LOST! GAME OVER!!

PS Here's The Irish Sun's hilariously crap 'marriage referendum party playlist', includes Born This Way, Gay Bar, I'm Coming Out, and err, Snow Patrol!

Saturday, 23 May 2015

Oscar Romero: Closer To Heaven

The Salvadorean archbishop Óscar Romero was beatified on Saturday, the final step before sainthood, 35 years after he was shot dead at the altar by a rightwing death squad for denouncing the oppression of the poor by the military dictatorship.

Roman Catholics from around the world mixed with former Marxist rebels from El Salvador’s brutal civil war as more than 250,000 people gathered in the capital to celebrate the country priest who confronted a US-backed government.

Cardinal Angelo Amato, sent by Pope Francis, officiated the ceremony that followed decades of debate over whether Romero had rejected Church doctrine by embracing radical, leftwing rebels...

The Guardian.

It's what he wouldn't have wanted etc...

Ireland: Fuck Yeah!

Mail Online joins in the celebrations.

Don't think I'll spoil the moment by checking their reader comments right now...

Paul Ross Wife Quits: After Drug-Fuelled Gay Romps

Leaving only her hand behind...

Eurovision 2: Pavlov's Gays Say Boo!

Peter Brookes in The Times.
After a year in which Russia continued to be fiercely condemned for annexing the Crimea and its separatists' seizure of eastern Ukraine, the country remains a pariah through most of Europe.

Now, amid fears Russia's Eurovision singer Polina Gagarina will bear the brunt of the ill-will, contest organisers have installed drastic 'anti-booing' technology for the final in Vienna.

Special sound reducers have been installed in a bid to stop the acrimony towards Russia being broadcast - an issue that was last year labelled 'embarrassing' by organisers...

The organisers' intervention also comes after Russia's anti-gay laws continue to be condemned by the international community, while Vienna - this year's host city - has installed gay-themed traffic lights...

Fagburn looks forward to the deafening boos from the audience which will almost certainly greet the representative of the country with by far the worst human rights record, the apartheid state of Israel

Many have asked why Australia is entered this year, though it's only a silly gimmick for the contest's 60th anniversary.

Israel - which is also rather obviously not in Europe - has taken part since 1973, but what can this be but Pinkwashing?

Ireland: Excitement Mounts As The Count Begins

But this referendum was about more than just the right to marry. Much, much more. It was the manifestation of a social revolution that’s been simmering away in Ireland for some time.

It used to be that Irishness was defined by affection for the Catholic Church and resistance to European liberal trends. So stubborn was this identity that the country took longer than the rest of Western Europe to embrace secularism. But the paedophile revelations of the 1990s rightly rocked faith in the Church as an institution, while a series of recent scandals shook faith in its actual theology...

Shake off the last remnants of traditional religious authority, it was reasoned, and Ireland could finally join the 21st century. Au revoir, Father Ted.

To emphasise, the Yes vote was undoubtedly a reflection of growing tolerance towards gays and lesbians. But it was also a politically trendy, media backed, well financed howl of rage against Catholicism. How the Church survives this turn, is not clear. It'll require a lot of hard work and prayers.

Tim Stanley, young fogeyish Christian bore in residence, The Daily Telegraph.

In fine: Ireland to the Pope; 'SCREW YOU!'

Winston Churchill: Outrageous!

Gay or nay?
Note how the Daily Mail have semi-detatched themselves from these 'utterly implausible' suggestions/slurs about 'Britain's great hero'.

Another great promo for Michael Bloch's new book about gay, bi and gaybe British politicians, Closet Queens.

Terry Sue-Patt: 1964-2015

'Flippin' 'eck, Tucker!'

PS Terry was also the cover star of TRB's Up Against The Wall...

Twinkle: 1948-2015

Farewell Lynn Annette Ripley. x

Fagburn's thoughts are with Morrissey at this difficult time.

Derek Jacobi & Ian McKellen: The 50 Year Phase

What they’re both rather delighted about is that we now live in an age where you can debate the portrayal of gay couples on mainstream telly. They talk about their own experiences of being gay in an age where such a thing was illegal. It’s sobering stuff.

Jacobi says he came out to his mother when he was at university. ‘She said, “All young men, go through this phase, don’t worry.” I remember saying, “Don’t tell Dad.”’ He doesn’t know to this day if she did. ‘I think she did, but I don’t know. But they were wonderful, my parents, not much was said but they kind of knew, they got it.’

McKellen hasn’t heard his friend talk of this before. ‘That’s the first time I’ve heard that,’ he says, genuinely moved. ‘I never came out to my family. Biggest regret of my life.’ It turns out he didn’t even come out to Derek at university, even though it’s always been reported that he had something of a crush on him.

‘Yes, I did fancy Derek, but I didn’t act on it, God, no. It was illegal, remember. I do get on my high horse about it, because it was so difficult. There were no gay clubs you could go to. No gay bars, no gay newspaper, nothing. What there was was a bit sleazy, I suspect. One of the reasons I became an actor was that you could meet gay people. Even then everything was difficult. When you went to America they asked, “Are you now, or have you ever been, homosexual?” I lied on the form. It was a different world.’

His anger propelled him into the gay rights movement, and he’s still a very vocal campaigner. Jacobi, on the other hand, took the opposite route. When he finally gets the chance to talk – McKellen is definitely the chattier of the two – his story is no less compelling. ‘No, I wasn’t open. I just lived my life and people responded to me.

'If they knew, or thought, I was gay, that was fine. If they didn’t, that was fine. I’ve never been on a Gay Pride march. It doesn’t mean I don’t feel as strongly about it, I just don’t talk about it.’ In fact, he’s been with his partner Richard Clifford for nearly 40 years (they got together just after his first major TV role in the BBC’s I, Claudius), and they entered into a civil partnership in 2006.

What’s their secret? ‘Oh God! I don’t know. It is a long time, isn’t it? There’s a certain amount of work, but there’s luck too.’ McKellen fills in the gaps. ‘They adore each other, and are a very good match.’ ...

From an enchanting profile of Derek and Ian in the Daily Mail, which they put in the Femail section natch.

Quite bafflingly, Vicious returns for a second series on Monday June 1st.

Ian and Derek during their Cambridge days.

Eurovision: Vote No!

Modern Toss, The Guardian Guide.

Thankfully Fagburn's off to see Sleaford Mods tonight.

Friday, 22 May 2015

Neville Longbottom: All Grown Up

HARRY Potter child star Matthew Lewis is all grown up — and now his pants are casting a spell.

The 25-year-old, who played nerdy Neville Longbottom in the films, stripped off for Attitude magazine.

And the sight of Matthew’s magic wand left Harry Potter author JK Rowling more horrified than her fans when she killed off Dumbledore.

Referring to Harry Potter actor Daniel Radcliffe’s famous nude stage role, the millionaire writer tweeted: “Not as bad as watching Dan in Equus, but close. Warn me next time, for God’s sake.”

An embarrassed Matthew, who also appeared in BBC shows The Syndicate and Bluestone 42, replied: “Well, this is awkward. Sorry, Jo... ”

But Rowling told him: “I will always support you whatever you do, Matthew. Now go put some clothes on.”

Matthew was only 11 when he began playing chubby Neville Longbottom and had to hide his buff body under fatsuits by the time of the final film in 2011...

The Sun - and every media outlet on Earth.

It's funny how people don't look like they did when they were 11 when they're 24, isn't it?

Ireland: Vote Yes!

Dear Irish people,

If the history of our two nations teaches us anything, it is surely that there is nothing you lot like better than being told what to do by English people - so may I join with so many of my fellow countrymen (and ladies!) and implore you to go out today and VOTE YES!


PS Not sure I can document all the happy clappy huzzahs in the papers today, so here's a rare piece of uncommon sense, A referendum is not the way to go when it comes to gay rights or minority issues, Saeed Kamali Dehghan, Guardian, Comment Is Free.

Letter Of The Day: Cakegate

The Guardian.

See also Simon Jenkins The Law Can't Create Tolerance.

Thursday, 21 May 2015

The Guardian: Irish Gay Marriage Referendum Special Souvenir Supplement

From Germany to Buenos Aires, and with the gay marriage referendum taking place in Ireland tomorrow, here are some stories of couples celebrating same-sex marriage around the world...

As Ireland’s airwaves imposed a broadcasting embargo on the topic of same sex marriage – and as Ireland’s taoiseach Enda Kenny urged the country to vote yes because “there is nothing to fear for voting for love and equality” – [Colm] Tóibín told Channel 4 News that he was confident of victory. Polls have suggested that 58% of the electorate will vote yes.

“This time round something has lifted, the society has had the imagination to change, and that’s a great thing,” said the author, who is gay himself and who last week said in a lecture that “we are not talking about sexuality. We are talking about our love, the embrace of love, how our love equals that of our fellow citizens”.

“The issue is: what is the difference between my love if you’re gay and your love if you’re not gay that makes my love lesser than yours?” he told Channel 4 News’s Jon Snow on Wednesday. “And if you think my love is lesser than yours, who have you asked and how do you know? The question is really about degrees of love. And if you’re gay, I think you’re pretty sure in the way you’ve lived your life that actually love – for all of us, we’re human – is the same, and we would like that to be publicly recognised and under our constitution.”

With four Irish Catholic bishops asking their parishioners in letters to vote no tomorrow, Tóibín said the church “has no moral authority to speak on civil matters, because of the abuse, and I don’t notice them speaking much on spiritual matters, so that they’re sort of neutered”...

Gay Study Faked Shock: I Don't Believe It!

A study claiming that gay people advocating same-sex marriage can change voters’ minds has been retracted due to fraud.

What’s more, the funding agencies credited with supporting the study deny having any involvement.

The study was published last December in Science, and received lots of media attention (including from BuzzFeed News). It found that a 20-minute, one-on-one conversation with a gay political canvasser could steer voters in favor of same-sex marriage. Not only that, but these changed opinions lasted for at least a year and influenced other people in the voter’s household, the study found.

Donald Green, the senior author on the study, retracted it on Tuesday shortly after learning that his co-author, UCLA graduate student Michael LaCour, had faked the results. Science posted an official “editorial expression of concern” — a very big deal in the science world — on Wednesday afternoon.

“I am deeply embarrassed by this turn of events and apologize to the editors, reviewers, and readers of Science,” Green, a professor of political science at Columbia University, said in his retraction letter to the journal, as posted on theRetraction Watch blog...

BuzzFeed News - who are good enough to fess up that they fell for it.

Fagburn finds it very hard to believe some research about homosexuality turned out to be a load of rubbish that reflected the bias of a researcher.

Mind = Blown!

Question; why has this story got so much coverage when so much junk gay 'research' gets waved through unchecked?

PS No, I haven't checked this story. Weird thing is, I'd be surprised if the general gist of the findings wasn't true.

The Jeremy Kyle Show: Brotherly Love

THE JEREMY Kyle Show is 10 today. Happy Birthday the Jeremy Kyle Show! To celebrate, Jezza looked back at his favourite shows ever.

Some people would have celebrated with cake but not our Jezza.

Let's start with the case that Jeremy described as his most shocking EVER. That's quite a claim, we've seen some incredible scenes play out on 'Kyle.

But it turns out Jezza was right, this was the most shocking case we've seen on the show.

Lee and Paul met on the internet and felt a connection. When they met in person they felt a strong attraction and began physical relations before they began to suspect they were actually relations.

That's right.

Paul had been adopted at 18-months-old and when Lee introduced his new boyfriend to his family they noticed the striking resemblance between Paul and Ron, Lee's mum's ex-husband.

The two men stopped having a sexual relationship as soon as they began to think they might be half-brothers.

They came on the show for a DNA test to see if they were related.

The DNA test showed that they were half-brothers...


Tom Daley: Happy Birthday

Happy 21st, babes!


PS You're probably too old for you-know-who now, but have a good one.

PPS Picture switched with one birthday boy put on Instagram later.

Daily Mail: Exclusive!

Getting the Great Bard to write about Sir Cliff is quite a scoop, yes.

Poor sod.

Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Gay Dad Watch: Won't Somebody Please Think Of Our Children!

Over the weekend, the New York Times published one of the most frustrating, yell-at-the-screen articles I’ve read in a long time. The piece, cheekily headlined “Chelsea’s Risqué Businesses,” explored an ongoing skirmish in Chelsea, a Manhattan neighborhood that used to be edgy and largely gay but that’s now mainly blanketed in the boringness of gentrification. The fact that no one actually thinks of 2015 Chelsea as particularly seedy, in a gay sense or otherwise, makes the battle—which apparently has sanctimonious gay parents trying to drive out gay porn/novelty shop owners in the name of the CHILDREN—all the more exasperating. But, as I explored in my recent long-form piece on the history and future of gay culture, the phenomenon of gay people attacking traditionally gay spaces and practices in the name of respectability is, sadly, nothing new. Indeed, it’s been the main mechanism by which much of the mainstream advocate class has tried to cajole “equality” from straight people in the wake of the first AIDS crisis...

J Bryan Lowder on great form as ever on Slate. Now read on...

There goes the neighbourhood etc etc.

McQueen: Questions To Which The Answer Is No


PS The new play, McQueen, may not be much cop shock!

From The Personal Ads: Oh MUM!!!

India's first gay marriage ad: Mumbai mother seeks 'vegetarian groom for my son'

Mother of gay activist places advert seeking "Well-Placed, Animal-Loving, Vegetarian GROOM for my SON" in Mumbai newspaper’s matrimonials pages...


Gilbert & George: At Home With...

LOL etc.

The Guardian.

PS Fagburn's been for tea and cake there, you know...

Elton John: The Musical

TELLING the story of SIR ELTON JOHN’s life in a stage show was never going to be a small project.

But I’ve discovered his incredible back catalogue — from Your Song to I’m Still Standing — will finally be making it to Broadway and the West End.

That’s because his highly anticipated biopic Rocketman, with TOM HARDY as Elton — real name Reginald Kenneth Dwight — is already being developed into a musical.

It’s being worked on by the creative team behind the smash hit musical adaptation of Billy Elliot, including its writer LEE HALL.

In an exclusive interview, highly-regarded producer SALLY GREENE, who runs London’s Old Vic, revealed: “It is in the works right now.

“It will be called Rocketman but we will do the film first. It will open in Broadway before London.

“It will be Elton’s back catalogue... he will never end his career.”...

How Fat Reg from Pinner became QUEEN OF THE WORLD!!!

Suggested title, a Lionel Bart-esque Elton!

Hope it is his lifestory (Greene doesn't say that directly here), it's been suitably dramatic, and some of his best songs were Bernie Taupin writing about him; Someone Saved My Life Tonight, The Bitch Is Back, I'm Still Standing, Made In England, and just think of the costume changes.

Please don't let his back catalogue be shoo-horned into a silly and completely incongruous story like We Will Rock You and Mamma Mia!

Gay Cake Row: A Very Strange Can Of Worms

The Telegraph.

"At the end of the day, if you went in there and two days later they said, 'We don't want to make your cakes because of our beliefs', you'd just never go back to that shop and you'd probably say to all your gay friends, 'Don't go there, they're anti-gay', and boycott it.

"What about if somebody walked in and said I want a cake and I want the whole Islamic State on it and how I support it and how I support them killing our people. Because it's a business, do they have to make it? And if they turn around and say they're not making it, we'd all applaud it."

Coleen Nolan on yesterday's Loose Women - watch her here.

It's a bit of a stretch to say; 'Coleen Nolan compares supporting gay rights to backing IS.' The Sun et al.

PS Beware self-righteous intolerance, whatever quarter it comes from - Michael White, The Guardian.

Tuesday, 19 May 2015

Will Young: What Is Point?

Will Young says that he has one simple question for Simon Cowell, the man behind Will's first big breakthrough.

Will, who was the first winner of Simon’s TV talent show ‘Pop Idol’, tells HuffPostUK: “It would be like speaking to a devout Catholic or something, someone anti-gay marriage and anti-contraception.”

However, Will who acknowledges he made a lot of money from the competition and his ensuing career, wants to have a chat with the pop supremo and ask him “What’s it all for? How much is too much? What’s the drive?” ...

Will Young chatting to Huffington Post UK about his crippling sense of existential doubt.

Will Nice-But-Dim regularly writes blogposts for HuffPostUk, I strongly suggest you 'check them out'.