Three of the stupidest words in the English language

“Promoting gay lifestyles”

Why am I still reading this sad, miserable, squashed rag?

*sigh* here we go again. Point-by-point rebuttal alert! This is your last chance to turn around and run for the hills!

“But some gays, it seems, still feel they are the victims of discrimination.”

Oh, they feel that, do they? What an unfortunate statement to make today, of all days. And that’s only a very mild discrimination story, I could find much worse ones without looking too hard.

“Meanwhile Ben Summerskill, chief executive of Stonewall, has circulated an email in which he announces a new series of training events for staff in primary and secondary schools this autumn ‘to equip teachers with the tools and confidence to tackle homosexual bullying’.

In fact, there’s no evidence of any homosexuals being bullied at any of these schools.”

You poor, naive man. Most bullying is invisible and/or ignored, even when the school has a self-proclaimed “anti-bullying policy”. There have been many cases of parents having to take their bullied child (for whatever reason) out of school, either because no one cared or because addressing the problem would have made the school look bad. The last thing an anti-bullying policy is supposed to do is unearth some bullying, because that would be awkward.

So please don’t say smugly “there’s no evidence, therefore it’s not happening” as this statement is truly laughable. An ostrich would be proud.

“None of these schools appears to be demonising homosexuals. Grace Academy, which runs schools with a Christian ethos in Coventry, Solihull and Darlaston in the West Midlands, is quoted by The Independent newspaper as saying: ‘The governing body will not permit the promotion of homosexuality.’”

Has anyone noticed that none of those people who go on about ‘promoting homosexuality’ ever explain what the hell that means? Because I for one would love to know.

Is it acknowledging that there are gay people in the world?

Is it mentioning homosexuality, in so many words, in public places?

Is it telling young people that no, they won’t go to hell for being gay, don’t be silly?

Is it allowing gay people to do, y’know, gay things, without putting them in jail?


Because all these things seem pretty normal to me. Replace the word ‘gay’ with ‘straight’ and ‘homosexuality’ with ‘heterosexuality’ in the above sentences and tell me, who would bat an eyelid?

This man destroyed a generation.
This man destroyed a generation. Apparently.

“Not one school cited by campaigners denounces homosexuality, or suggests that gays are in any way reprehensible. They simply do not want to promote it on an equal basis with heterosexuality.”

Right. And yet he says…

“Most of us, I think, would abhor any educational establishment that encouraged its pupils to discriminate against homosexuals, or any other social group. Apart from being morally objectionable, such an approach would break a number of laws.”

So the overall message, I think, is “Listen, gay people: there’s nothing wrong with being gay – nothing whatsoever – but it’s still not as good as being straight.”

I am distinctly unimpressed. That’s what happens when you try to make an illogical argument sound logical: a severe case of cognitive dissonance.

“But shouldn’t parents who have reservations about the promotion of homosexuality on equal terms with heterosexuality be free to send their children to schools where their views are reflected, as well as respected?”

Is this a genuine question? Because my answer is a resounding NO. Parents should be prevented from filling their children’s heads with bullshit as much as possible. At worst it might stop the child from growing into an balanced, open-minded adult and at best, for all the unpleasantness it causes, it’s often a total waste of time and energy.

Case in point: I had a Catholic upbringing and a strongly homophobic father.

I know, right? I’m still wiping tears of laughter myself.

“Nonetheless, all things being equal, they would probably be happier if their children turned to be straight rather than gay.”

Then they are morons who don’t deserve their children. It’s that simple. Of course there are people out there who openly say “I hope my unborn kid isn’t ginger”, so never underestimate just how stupid mankind can be.

Out of interest, what is the point of starting this sentence with “All things being equal” when, according to you, they patently are not? Might as well have started with “I’m not a bigot, but…”

“Don’t such people have a right to influence their children’s values according to their own beliefs and consciences (…)?”

No! Absolutely not! I vomit on people who think it’s their right to indoctrinate their children!

Look, it’s very simple: either a kid turns out to be straight, or they turns out to be gay. There is nothing parents can do about it. There is nothing to promote.

If your kid is straight, gay people and things have no relevance whatsoever to their life, so why bother teach them to hate those people and things? You might as well teach them to hate Uzbek underwater basket-weaving.

If your kid is gay, you’ve just taught them to hate themselves. And you’ve also taught them that you hate them. Result. Be proud. One family ruined. Check!

“Gays should be free to live and work and play just as non-gays are (…)”

Why thank you, kind sir. You’re too good, you really are. I’m sure ‘gays’ (nobody says ‘straights’, do they?) are queueing up to kiss your feet as I speak, just look out of the window and see if I’m wrong.

“(…) and it is a credit to our society that at last they are able to do so.”

That’s no thanks to you though, is it? Please don’t take credit for what was achieved by people you despise and almost certainly opposed at every turn. It makes you look pathetic.

“They have been abominably treated in the past, and perhaps a few of them still are.”

I bet typing this was a real struggle. Did you have to go and lie down afterwards?

“But those gays and non-gays who believe in freedom of conscience should defend the rights of their fellow citizens so long as their own rights are not threatened.”

# Aux aaaarmes, citoyens! #
# Aux aaaarmes, citoyens! #

Oh wait, wrong country.

“But prejudice and intolerance live on. And they have a strange propensity to flourish among the people who were once their victims.”

Hello kettle, my name is pot. My, how black you are!

Bankrupt celebrities, or First World Problems

Some boyband member is bankrupt. Let’s discover what this means to him.

“Shane, 34, recalled the heart-breaking moment when his son Patrick saw a Spiderman toy in a shop window and told him it was too expensive and he couldn’t have it.

‘I remember my little fella Patrick looking in a shop window and going: ‘Daddy, look at that Spider-Man toy! Can I get that?’

I looked and it was £29.99. I was like: ‘That’s really expensive. We can’t get that now.”

Wrong answer Shane. The correct answer was “It’s not your birthday or Christmas, so NO. And next time, try saying please.”

It’s suddenly very clear why he’s bankrupt, isn’t it?

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through

Stephen Fry thinks the French are a better-educated race than the British.

First of all, the French are not a race. Neither are the British. It never ceases to amaze me how much Lefties love that word. But never mind.

Unless I’m very much mistaken, Stephen Fry knows next to nothing about the French education system. He was educated in England and has no child currently at school in France. He’s only basing his remarks on one study, which is hazardous at best – but knowing nothing about a topic has never stopped Stephen from inflicting his opinion on us in the past, so why should he start now?

He may have a point about French primary schoolchildren knowing more than their British counterparts, but what he’s missing is that this state of affairs is all due to relentless rote learning, one-size-fits-all teaching methods and much stricter discipline than in British schools. Sadly, it appears nothing has changed since I was at school.

A French primary school, today.
A French primary school, today

He says

“A lot of it is at the right age, somehow getting that gear, that cog fitting that excites a child, that makes them feel pleased with themselves for achieving and for knowing.”

Yes, that would be nice but that’s not the way they go about it in France. I don’t remember feeling pleased with myself for “achieving and knowing”, but for not getting detention at school and a bollocking at home if I got a bad mark. French kids have no interest in learning anything that isn’t marked by the teacher, because it’s worth nothing to them and is a waste of brainpower.

He’s also not realising that all this knowledge is acquired at the expense of creativity and self-expression. No one cares what pupils think or what they are capable of creating. They’re at school to fill their heads with other people’s thoughts then regurgitate them at exam time, and that’s it. It’s the same at primary school, secondary school and even higher education level.

If Fry had gone through the French education system himself, he could never have learned to act by joining the Footlights at university as there would have been no Footlights to join. In order to write his novels, he would have had to learn writing techniques on his own, as an adult, as there would have been no Creative Writing classes to attend. And so on and so forth.

Of course, there is no University Challenge in France either. As if.
Of course, there is no University Challenge in France either. As if.

Yes, the French education system produces people with a good smattering of general knowledge, but it doesn’t produce good all-rounders. Anything physical is neglected at best and despised at worst and woe betide the pupil who has different learning needs, as streaming is banned in the name of equality. As I said earlier, one size fits all and if it doesn’t fit you, you are made to feel a failure.

Since Stephen has spoken at length about how much of a gifted outcast he was at his English public school, I wonder how he would have fared in the strict French system where individuals matter even less. Not too well, I suspect.

My birthday cake deserves its own post

Does this person look familiar to you?
It's just like being in the Potions dungeon
It’s just like being down in the Potions dungeon, isn’t it?
He's even more terrifying in the cold light of day
Professor Snape is even more terrifying in the cold light of day. Those eyes!
Oh Severus, you have such a way with words.
Oh Severus, you have such a way with words
Such presence… *shivers*
Hmmm… looks like Polyjuice to me
I even get my own owl! Sitting on my own spellbook! My life is complete
Textbook slice, if I say so myself
Yes, it’s a big cake. Yes, there are only two of us. Your point?