Homosexuality has definitely been flavour-of-the month as far as the media is concerned. And, in the main, it has been sympathetic coverage.
The Keith Hampson affair, coinciding as it did with a parliamentary debate on the subject, ensured maximum exposure for the ugly ‘pretty police’.
But did all this attention really make any difference to the situation? Well, perhaps the promise from the Metropolitan Police to “tighten up the rules” is pretty meaningless, but, as far as public opinion goes, I think we have made major inroads.
It was interesting to see how various papers treated the issue. According to THE SUNDAY MIRROR: “Police deny claims often made in clubs that they act as decoys to trap gays.” Whilst on the same day in THE OBSERVER: “Police sources said the decision to use agent provocateurs was taken at a very high level.”
The commentators were unanimously favourable in their support for an end to entrapment. It was as though someone had, at last, shouted foul! and all the media gurus joined in the call for fair play.
Lynda Lee-Potter in THE DAILY MAIL said: “If the destruction of Dr Keith Hampson MP’s career results in ending the vendetta against homosexuals which the police have been conducting for years, possibly one iota of good will emerge from this sad and sorry case.”
John Vincent in THE SUN wrote: “As the police know full well, the real crime that worries the public is out on the streets. For most people safety on public transport and in their homes comes before private morals.” Even the ghastly Woodrow Wyatt in THE NEWS OF THE WORLD managed to admit that he had “no room to cast stones” and ruminated on how the sex drive can “make worthy and sensible men behave like lunatics.”
THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH carried a large and sympathetic piece entitled Law, Liberty and the Homosexual in which Paul Williams explored the gay world and its reaction to police activities.
Ken Livingstone was reported in the LONDON EVENING STANDARD as saying: “I think it is absolutely monstrous that in a city where mugging, burglary and rape are the main concern, we have police officers wasting their time around gay bars, waiting for someone to pinch their bums.”
And even the normally vituperative SCOTSMAN managed to say: “Just as in the era before homosexual law reform, the blackmailer was generally regarded with greater detestation than his homosexual victim, so in today’s different moral climate the police agent provocateur might be more generally disliked than the homosexual he arrests.”
I hate to return to the distasteful subject of DAILY EXPRESS gossip William Hickey, but his recent spiteful anti-gay tirades have been too much to ignore.
First, he set about trying to destroy the Conservative Group for Homosexual Equality. He did this by publishing the names of those Tory MPs brave enough to offer themselves as vice-presidents of the group. This was supposed to be some sort “expose”, but the story amounted to nothing but spite, malice and ill-intention.
But he went one better a few days later by calling on Sir Peter Hayman, the elderly diplomat recently fined for cottaging, to surrender his knighthood. Or better still — in Hickey’s book — the Queen should take it away from him.
It took a pretty heartless bastard to write, as Hickey did: “After treachery one might suppose that fiddling about in public lavatories is only one down the scale in bringing dishonour to honours.”
He wrote this about an old man who has given most of his life to the faultless service of his country.
If Hickey knows what shame is, I hope he’s hanging his head at this very moment.
REPORTING that Tory MP Richard Alexander had resigned from the Conservative Group for Homosexual Equality (see previous item) THE SUNDAY MIRROR says: “Mr Alexander stressed that he did not practise the group’s activities.”
Eh? Can we just have a re-run of that? …”he did not practise the group’s activities.”
Like what — licking envelopes? Organising meetings? Lobbying parliament?
Or does the CGHE have livelier ‘activities’ than we know about?
In an astonishing about-face, Sir John Junor, editor of THE SUNDAY EXPRESS and long-time critic of gay rights, has actually admitted that gays are often treated unjustly.
He was commenting upon the case of Richard Longstaff, who emigrated from England to the USA in 1966 and has now been denied American citizenship because he failed to declare his homosexuality on his original visa application all those years ago. “I hardly go singing and dancing in the streets in favour of the Gay Liberation movement,” writes JJ, “But isn’t it a little tough that someone who cannot be blamed for having been born the way he is should be victimised for not having had the courage to give a truthful answer to a humiliating question put to him when he was little more than a child?”
You’re making progress, Sir John. But hasn’t it dawned on you yet that America isn’t the only country that persecutes homosexuals?
Why not drop a line to your friend Margaret Thatcher. She can give you all the details.
According to THE SUN, ITV has sold The Benny Hill show to Russia. But the Soviets insist that all references to homosexuality be deleted from the shows.
It would be nice to think that the Russians didn’t want to insult the sensibilities of their gay citizens by exposing them to Hill’s vulgar and unfunny jibes. But the truth is more likely to be that they want to keep alive the myth that homosexuality does not exist in the USSR.
Whatever the benefits the revolution brought to the people of the Soviet Union, gays were, as they are everywhere else, excluded from enjoying them.
That haven of tolerance and love, Belfast, has, according to THE SUNDAY NEWS, been up in arms at the idea of Man Around’s gay holidays being made available to Ulster homosexuals.
“DUP leaders lashed out at the ‘filthy’ holidays,” the paper says, and with unusual restraint Assemblyman Wesley Pentland said: “Package holidays for homosexuals are dirty, deplorable, filthy, anti-God and unscriptural.”
Whereas East Belfast MP Peter Robinson said: “I’d like to send perverts and degenerates on a one-way trip to gay resorts.”
Believe me, if I lived in Belfast, I’d be the first one knocking on Mr Robinson’s door begging for that one-way ticket. Anything to get away from the poisoned minds and soiled mouths of these ga-ga men of god.
“Straight Talking John Smith” in THE SUNDAY PEOPLE chides the homosexual community for “hijacking another perfectly decent English word.” He refers to ‘pink’, telling readers that there is a ‘pink’ economy. And the money spent in this twilight world is known as the ‘pink pound’.
“Thus tainted,” he says, “the word pink will take on a simpering new significance far removed from its original intent.”
Well, as you’re so fond of straight talking, why don’t you take back all the words you and your wonderful kind have lumbered us with in the past? To start with you can have “queer” and “puff” and “fairy” and “nancy” and all the other perfectly innocent words you’ve corrupted in your sickening attempts to insult and belittle us.