Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Ken Livingstone: Riddle Me This

Did you know Ken Livingstone hates The Gays?
Although in the last thirty years he's almost certainly done more for the LGBT community than any other British politician, apparently he's a fifth columnist who's despised us all along.
I found out this today from some of our tireless and long-standing allies, the Tories.
Late this afternoon the New Statesman published on its website some extracts from a forthcoming interview with Ken Livingstone.
As ever, he is frank and often funny whether talking about Boris Johnson, Margaret Thatcher or Rupert Murdoch.
But the interviewer, Jemima Khan, also brought up his "private life".
A pulled quote reads;

"We [Boris and I] both have five [children]. I can admit to all mine.
"[The public] should be allowed to know everything, except the nature of private relationships - unless there is hypocrisy, like some Tory MP denouncing homosexuality while they are indulging in it."

Pressed by Khan about his use of "Tory MP", Ken responds:

"Well, the Labour ones have all come out... As soon as Blair got in, if you came out as lesbian or gay you immediately got a job. It was wonderful... you just knew the Tory party was riddled with it like everywhere else is."

Fagburn agrees with all that.
But apparently he outed himself as a secret homophobe by using the word "riddled".
Riddlegate - as no-one calls it - seems to have begun around 5pm when Sophy Ridge tweeted one line from the piece - "Ken Livingstone on Tory MPs not being open about being gay: "The Tory party was riddled with it like everywhere else" - and a link to the NS.
Who is Sophy Ridge?
She's a political reporter on Sky News.
Oh, and she used to work for the News of the World - a now defunct tabloid not exactly known for its support for gay rights or the Labour Left.
In fact, Fagburn seems to remember them regularly attacking Livingstone over his support for gay rights.
Things blew up when this was picked up by Guido Fawkes (he gives a nod to Ridge) - a Tory blogger not exactly known for being pro-gay (his readers are often brazenly homophobic - have a look at the comments after the post).

Ken's Gay Gaffe

"With his usual tact Ken has told the New Statesman that he believes the Tory party "used to be riddled with it like everywhere else". What was this it. Gay people?
"There is never much doubt how people feel when they use the expression "riddled", but for the avoidance of that let's see what the dictionary says:

'Riddled: Fill or permeate (someone of something), esp. with something or someone), esp. with something unpleasant or undesirable.'

"Guido has to wonder how this is going to play at the LGBT London for Ken fundraising dinner in March."

You may have noticed the "quote" from Ken is getting shorter and shorter.
According to BBC News; "Angie Bray and Mike Freer, Tory MPs in London, wrote to the Labour leader, Ed Miliband, urging him to ensure Livingstone's remarks were retracted. Bray said: "These are the sort of offensive remarks we hear all too often from Labour's candidate for mayor."
Purely in the interest of balance here are some in-no-way offensive remarks by Boris Johnson; "Slowly Labour is winning the battle it really cares about, the Kulturkampf, adjusting what can be said, and what cannot be said… Homosexuality is to be taught in schools." The Spectator, April 29th, 2000.
"If gay marriage was OK – and I was uncertain on the issue – then I saw no reason in principle why a union should not be consecrated between three men, as well as two men; or indeed three men and a dog." Friends, Voters, Countrymen, 2001.
A spokesperson for Ken Livingstone said; "Ken is clearly saying the advance of lesbian and gay people into politics is unequivocally a good thing.
"He has fought for equality for gay and lesbian people throughout his life, and the fact they are represented in all major political parties is a sign of the progress that has been made."
All of which is as obvious as rain - unless you're a complete idiot or a right-wing goon with an agenda.
This is the most stupid, hypocritical, irrelevant manufactured outrage Fagburn can remember since the last one.
How ironic that the last part of Ken Livingstone's New Statesman interview reads:

What is your greatest boast?
"That I am still here after 30 years of unremitting media hostility."


  1. Tory MP Louise Mensch tweeted

    "How is it possible for Ken Livingstone to say Tory party is "riddled with" gays and remain Labour's candidate for Mayor of London?"

  2. A handy round-up of quotes on Riddlegate by right-wing cunts on LGBTory!/LGBToryUK

  3. All the gay Labour MPs have come out????

  4. The fact the Tories would try to manufacture this with Ken of all people makes me fucking sick.
    And Louise Mensch is a dickhead.
    There's clearly a sizeable apolitical and ahistorical twunt faction on the internet who'll just accept this as fact and pass it round.

  5. Louise Mensch is a greedy, grabbing, desperate, media PR attention slut like her boss. Yes, I fucking hate her. She i'm afraid she makes my blood boil.

  6. camerons fake "politicians" like mensch and himself disgust me. they are not politicians they are phony twitter PR media demagogues. causing PR storms for sky news to fill their drivelous programming presented by notw cast offs. they dont care about equality and rights they are just playing bullshit PR games. Who would you rather have fighting your corner as a gay person or any other minority group?
    Ken Livingston or skynewsnewsoftheworldcastoffslouisemenschdavidcameron???
    A misplaced word doesnt matter a jot, its actions that matter and Ken can stand proud on his, that tory media lot only care to cause a fake outrage and generate PR they are all bullshit PR people.
    I would say that ken used the word "riddled" as applying ton tory closetism not gay sexuality. coz the torys are riddled with that. loads of them are closet cases with fake phony marriages.

  7. Perhaps he meant that the Tory party was riddled with MPs-denouncing-homosexuality-while-indulging-in-it.

  8. I think he did.
    Just going through coverage of this in today's papers, almost all have assumed he meant "riddled" with gay men...

    1. They're debating this on the Daily Politics now.
      Chris Bryant said it isn't clear from the interview that he meant "riddled with gays" at all and the female presenter went "Oh come on, it's obvious he meant riddled with gays" - NO IT ISN'T DICKHEAD!!!
      Chris Bryant said the Tories are manufacturing fake outrage and said that Boris Johnson equated homosexuality with bestiality fairly recently, whcih the Tory MP said wasn;t offensive at all.
      Then Andrew whatsisface said that if Boris Johnson had said this Labour would have been outraged... well, if Boris had said something like this the assumption that the remark was homophobic would be more grounded as he's said tonnes of homophobic shit in the past and is the member of a clearly homophobic party - Ken Livingstone on the other hand has been a vocal supporter of gay rights for 30 years.

  9. Just read Peter Tatchell's comment on Attitude:

    GT seem more concerned with naked photos of Andrew Hayden Smith to bother commenting on the story at all. :(

  10. Judging by his Tweets last night Attitude editor Matthew Todd is very angry about this...