Sunday, 26 February 2012

Stuart Andrews MP: Butt

The Mail On Sunday leads with an interview with Stuart Andrews - "The gay Tory MP allegedly head-butted by a Labour politician has spoken for the first time of his harrowing ordeal in a Commons bar brawl" - which they flag as an "Exclusive".
It's a literally blow-by-butt account of the alleged attack by Eric Joyce MP.
The Mail keep bringing up Andrews' sexuality, admittedly usually in quite a matter-of-fact manner.
But note how Chris Bryant - the gay Labour MP - didn't mention it once when he wrote about the incident in his column in Saturday's Independent.
The Mail tells us;
'It was the first time he had been involved in violence since he was beaten up for being homosexual 15 years ago. 'I was the victim of a queer bashing...
"'I was walking home and knocked unconscious by three men who abused me for being gay and a Tory. My father chased them off and got a fractured skull.'"
And most touchingly we learn;
"Earlier Mr Andrew had dined with David Cameron. They discussed Mr Andrew's visit to the Eurovision Song Contest in Latvia with his partner, and the MP's and Prime Minister's mutual love of the Gavin And Stacey television comedy."
And is the reader meant to read anything into this bizarro line?
"According to one account, at around 9pm, Mr Joyce was dancing the 'Gay Gordons' with two women on the terrace."
Were the observers really that expert at identifying specific Scottish country dances?
Are the Mail suggesting this may have been an anti-gay slur expressed through the medium of dance?"
Later in the article we get a clarification;
"It was the first time he had been involved in violence since a homophobic attack in 1997 – though there is no suggestion that anything similar was involved in Wednesday's incident."
Interesting to see at the end a credit "Additional reporting - Tony Grew."
Grew is a former editor of Pink News, and the best journalist they've ever had by a mile or two million - he's now Parliamentary Editor/Editor at epolitix.
"Additional reporting" is often a press euphemism for "we took some of this from something written by someone else".
I wonder what it means here.

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