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There are few things more puerile … - Wemyss's Appalling Hobby:
From the Party Guilty of Committing 'Gate of Ivory, Gate of Horn'
There are few things more puerile …

… than that inane, smug, adolescent incantation of ‘Can’t Stop the Signal’: at once twee, subliterate, and counterproductively annoying.

Note that I say ‘few’: not, ‘none’; whereby hangs a tale.

It is I think generally known that I do not much like Mr Obama. I don’t like his politics, I don’t like his economic views, such as they are, and I particularly don’t like his idea of what constitutes being an Ally. His treatment of the Right Honourable the Member for Kirkcaldy and Cowdenbeath, what time that very Gordon Brown MP (for it was he) was HM First Lord of the Treasury, was contemptible and unforgiveable: barracking prime ministers is my job, not his. And I consider – as anyone watching the EU crisis, the Falklands, and anything else, frankly, must consider – Mr Obama (and his administration) to be not merely not an Ally, but an actual enemy to the Crown and the United Kingdom.

And it should never occur to me that I should instruct American citizens to vote against (or for) him or any other candidate. (It occurred to the Grauniad, who mounted a campaign in 2004 to have their lickspittle readers write, unsolicited, to random Ohioans to urge them to vote for Mr Kerry over Mr Bush, thereby, one suspects, assuring that the worthy citizens of Ohio helped re-elect the latter: very un-British, that; but, then, that’s really what one had expected from the Great Minds at the Grauniad.)

It seems to have occurred to numerous foreigners on LJ, however, to instruct us as to what we want to do: Americans, Brazilians, all sorts, have decided to undertake the duty of directing our political lives and our communications with our hon. members. These are the orders you presume to issue us (Who Do Yo Think You Are Kidding, and All That):

If you only do one thing today... [Actually, I’m rather busy with my own affairs.]

Dear UK Flisters,

I know I’m preaching to the choir with you guys when it comes to LGBT equality [do you? Are we all of one mind?], but believing something is fair and actually getting off your bum and doing something about it [something I in fact do on a regular basis, ta ever sodding so] doesn’t always follow like it should [I’m so terribly sorry we’ve disappointed you, O Mistress and Empress. We shall Work Harder! Arbeit – well, take that as read]. So here’s a little (and slightly preachy) reminder!! [‘Slightly’? Here’s a little rejoinder, then: Sod. Off. And take your excessive punctuation with you.]

Three things I’d like you all to do before you go to bed tonight (if you haven’t already) [and why in buggery, precisely, ought I to care what you’d ‘like me to do’?]

1. Go … and sign the C4EM’s petition for marriage equality [oh, how ever did I function without your instruction, and question-begging semantic infiltration, Comrade?]. This is the simplest and probably most visible way to show your support. It currently has 60,000 signatures – the petition against (by C4M) has over 500,000!!! [Good, because I signed the latter. I’d been meaning to do, but it was your intervention in our buggering affairs that motivated me. Please do come out in favour of Spain over Gib and the Argies over the Falklands, it helps those of us on the correct side immeasurably.]

2. Go … fill out the government’s consultation. It might take a little bit longer, but you can bet that for every pro-person who doesn’t find the time, there will be dozens of ‘anti’ people who will. [Me, for one.]

3. Email your MP. There’s a handy template there for you to use so you don’t even have to think [yes. That’s telling, isn’t it?] of what to say. Also, you can go here to see where your MP stands on the issue. A hugely important thing to do because the majority of MPs will be voting with their conscience [those that have one. Which is not all that common] rather than following the party line, so make sure you let yours know your feelings. [Fortunately, most of my local MPs, in adjoining constituencies, are sound (one, on the other hand, is an invertebrate LibDem). My constituency, which has been in existence since 1295 and has been represented by all manner of men from RC martyrs to irreconcilable Roundheads, and never a Labourite even in the debacle of 1945, is sound as can be.]

4. Okay, so I lied [there’s a shock]. There’s actually a fourth thing. And that is [to – Ed.] simply spread the word. The consultation ends in two day [sic] – it’s our [What was that? ‘Our’? ‘You’ are not ‘us’, damn you, and I’ll thank you to remember that] last chance to get as many people mobilised as possible. So tweet it, Facebook, blog it, beat your friends and family around the head with it until they give in!!! [Get stuffed. And your supererogatory punctuation.] And if you want to repost to your own journal (and please feel free to edit), here’s an ever-so helpful button….

I am, actually, British; and I am, actually, gay. Whilst I typically describe my pull record as ‘modest’, I have, actually, been on my knees or on my back for more fit lads than many of you shall have had hot dinners – at least decent ones (Rules, Simpson’s, Wilton’s: that sort of thing). I respect the views of, say, Staps, who I know has an argument and shall articulate it, and Tree&Leaf, who has made her argument with all the logic I should expect of her; but I do not consider that this legislative idiocy is wise or proper or good. I am opposed to upending centuries of common law and doing damage to the constitution in order to confer rights and privileges, and special obligations, upon any two subjects who happen to love one another, when the only possible justification for granting those privileges and imposing those burdens is rooted in the State’s interest in a legal status that exists, quite simply, for the orderly descent and distribution of heritable property to the presumed biological children of a marriage. You (fellow Britons) may disagree, as is your good right, and act as your principles require. But we none of us want to be directed, instructed, and taught by a pack of foreigners whose own countries do not always, or in this case, necessarily follow the policies their citizens, these same meddling foreigners, now presume in their arrogance to insist we support.

It’s nothing personal: some of you are people whose work I admire: but. I really have only one response to your well-meant intervention in matters that are none of your concern, and none of your bloody business; and I think I should say the same whichever camp I were in on this controversy (and I can be camp, in select company): and that is,




How dare you presume to dictate to us, damn you.

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8 comments or Leave a comment
lazy_neutrino From: lazy_neutrino Date: June 13th, 2012 08:33 pm (UTC) (Link)
I have to say I agree with you on this: I hate being hectored and I tend to dig my heels in.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: June 14th, 2012 05:54 pm (UTC) (Link)

Britons never, and All That.

We're a stubborn lot.
fpb From: fpb Date: June 13th, 2012 08:35 pm (UTC) (Link)
I never thought the Grauniad's notorious stunt was expected to achieve anything. They aren't that stupid. I thought it was an advertising stunt, and not badly conceived of its kind. But I have noticed that LJ itself, the management I mean, has been taking a definite position on what they call "reproductive rights", and so I am not surprised to find this. These people fantasize themselves as Martin Luther King in Birmingham; in point of fact, they are foolish fanboys who would faint dead away if they had to look at Bull Durham in the face.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: June 14th, 2012 05:55 pm (UTC) (Link)


I really do tend to think they are that stupid. On the rest, we are agreed.
blamebrampton From: blamebrampton Date: June 14th, 2012 02:56 am (UTC) (Link)
Wemyss, I love you, and I absolutely respect your right not to be hectored on any issue (scroll past anything with a repost button is my motto).

However, my maternal grandparents made it impossible for me to be raised by my mother because she was a lesbian, and therefore, in their opinion, ipso facto unable to be a parent.

For as long as LGBTI relationships are counted as different to heterosexual ones, people will be able to convince themselves they are different. Gays and lesbians DO have children, and these children suffer as a result of these perceived differences.

While it is unlikely that anyone's grandparents would go to court for custody in this day and age, forcing a child's father to keep said child on the opposite side of the planet to its mother (in itself, probably a blessing, accent-wise), I think of children like my friend Oscar. His mother D was inseminated by our mutual friend, C who takes an active role in Oscar's life and is listed as father on his birth certificate, where there is space for only two names. D's girlfriend M has also been Oscar's mother for Oscar's entire life, but has no legal standing as such as she has no adoption in place (which would have required C to cede his rights) and they have no marriage record to state their relationship.

As things stand today in Australia, M would probably retain some parental rights in the even of her relationship with D breaking down, but probably is not definitely and I am not optimistic enough to consider Western civilisation incapable of leaping backwards when it comes to civil rights: the current dominance of the GOP by the religious right and winding back of women's reproductive rights in many states being a prime example.

Marriage has long played a role in protecting the rights of children, and there are currently a significant number of children with LGBTI parents who lack these protections. Civil Unions do not have the same effect, for reasons which are a long essay, but which you probably already know (I have to run out the door, so no time to list them.)

I disagree with you entirely on this issue, and confess I am saying 'Will Nobody Think of the Children?' when I argue it with politicians here.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: June 14th, 2012 05:58 pm (UTC) (Link)

My dear....

... What the people of Australia choose to do is - this being rather the point, as we agree - is their business, and I shouldn't for worlds interfere.

I acknowledge and appreciate yr concerns and arguments; I remain unconvinced that they outweigh mine, as no doubt is true contrariwise. What I am, as ever, rejoiced by is that we can argue, debate the matter, like the logical, educated persons we are.
sgt_majorette From: sgt_majorette Date: June 14th, 2012 05:20 am (UTC) (Link)
Wait, you're against "gay marriage"?

Well, huh.

As a spinster who does not have the right to decide who visits her in the hospital, I'm not sure what I think of any non-procreative marriage. I can't help but feel I'm subsidizing the sex lives of those luckier/happier than I.

I say let marriage be a religious function whatever the respective genital configurations of the two parties; if you want to get the government involved, apply for a child-rearing license (they have those, don't they? They must: you need a license to raise a dog.)

In other words, if I'm not being served champagne and clever expensive nibbles, I don't care.
wemyss From: wemyss Date: June 14th, 2012 06:08 pm (UTC) (Link)

I am, yes.

And you will recall that was an Absolute Groupthink position in the 1970s, as far as that goes: the very idea of accepting, let alone seeking, that Wicked Heterosexual Institution shd have given everyone on Fire Island and at P-town hives, I always understood from Transatlantic Friends (of Dorothy). Obvs, that is not at all my argument, but the conclusion is materially the same.

And of course I am speaking of civil marriage, and I do sympathise w yr point that children are got far more readily than a dog, and thus often worse treated.
8 comments or Leave a comment