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Guest column: Put the glitter away — Gay Pride needs to stop

A note from Katie Hopkins:

This is a guest post by Mark Johnson, an aspiring writer and commentator who writes in support of the gay community of which he is proud to be a part.

He wrote this piece for TheGayUK. But they pulled it from their site citing concerns over upsetting their audience, and appearing “tone deaf” to their readership.

Mark told me:

“I was really proud of this piece. I thought it was funny and thought provoking and a little self-deprecating… After all, I am part of that community as well. I just wanted to air a different side of Pride and my honest thoughts.”

And as an ambassador for truths not being told, I have offered to guest host his piece here at HopkinsWorld:

 

My news feed over the last couple of weeks has been rife with people heading to Pride in Gran Canaria off the coast of Spain (a.k.a, “Europe´s favourite gay paradise.”) These posts are littered with photos of half naked men draped in rainbow flags and glitter, and videos of taking body shots and pink unicorn inflatables in low rent apartment pools.

Pride is something I am not ashamed to say I have never been to. Pride is something I am not ashamed to say I am never going to go to.

Why? Because it is unnecessary commercialised bollocks which gives our community a “free pass” to act like slags and scream in the streets of our various cities for weekends on end.

I get it, I do:

We have had to fight to get to where we are and that is something that shouldn’t go without mention. But we are here. We have our rights — more rights than I maybe think we need. So why are we still carrying on with this trivial nonsense? What is the aim of it? Surely all that money and effort and coverage could go to much more worthy causes.

We, as a community are very selfish.

Before you start, because I imagine you will, I am not some self-hating gay who wishes I was straight. I don’t covet the life of a heterosexual male and wish I had a conventional life. I am happy in my own skin and I am proud of the man I am slowly becoming.

I am, however, conservative in my values. Deeply so. If I was American, I would fall into the “Gays for Trump” category. Although I wasn’t brought up in a particularly religious family, and religion is not something I discuss often, I would class myself as a religious man. I believe in God and the values of the Bible. I am a big believer in western values and I love my country.

I am not ashamed of my political stance, or my sexual orientation. However, people in our community seem to be. How can I be gay, yet against gay marriage? How can I be gay yet support Teresa May and Donald Trump and have a particularly soft spot for Jacob Reese-Mogg?

I get lambasted on a regular basis for these views, saying I am out of sync and old fashioned. The word “bigoted” is often catapulted around as well. But listen, this is not the case. That said, I think that liberals and “inclusion” and “safe spaces” are starting to ruin this country. They are starting to label free speech as “hate speech.”

I want the normal things in life, I want my dog and my husband and my house in the suburbs. The Range Rover and the foreign holidays, and maybe, one day a child.

Caveats to this though: I want my own child. I do not want to adopt. There are so many straight couples that cannot have children naturally, that would be much better suited and could give those children a much more “normal” home. I, to the extent of my knowledge, though limited as it is, can have children, so intend to do so as naturally as a surrogate will allow.

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I want a “husband,” who I will be civil partnered with, rather than married to. Marriage, in my opinion, and as written in the Bible, is the union of one man and one woman. It’s the way it is. Do I want the same spousal rights as a straight couple? Yes, but do I believe that I should be able to do it in a church in front of God? No.

People need to stop being offended all the time, put the glitter away, and focus on something worthy. Does parading through the street with a rainbow flag draped over your near naked body help anyone but yourself?

Let’s look at this economically. Say you go to Pride in a different city to your own, like if I were to travel from Newcastle to Manchester. Friday night train, returning, say, Sunday afternoon? Two nights in a hotel? “Outfits,” drinks, food, souvenirs, nightclub entrances and tickets? What would that cost? Say no change from £5-600.

Now imagine all the good that money could do if it wasn’t laundered through bars and event organisers and High Street stores and glitter factories.

Imagine the difference that money could make to a mental health charity, or a women’s aid charity. What it could do for homeless shelters or nearby churches or hostels. Not to mention the fact that, providing you are a taxpayer, that registered charity can claim an extra 20 per cent.

We act as a community like we are liberal, do good, “save the world” types. But we aren’t. We are self-serving party people who like an excuse to shove it in people’s faces. There aren’t black parades, celebrating the equal rights of black people. Women don’t still march on a yearly basis because they are now allowed to vote. So why should we? Why is it necessary?

Yes, we have fought hard for our rights. But we have them. And don’t tell me this is about LGBT rights across the globe because it isn’t. If it were, you would be donating the money and heading out to those countries to really make a difference. Not sipping cocktails in Rusty’s dressed in a leather harness pretending to care.

So my final word on Pride: Stop it!

You want to make a real difference? Spend your money on a registered charity who can help people in our community across the globe who aren’t as fortunate. Spend the money on a sabbatical from work and fly to one of those countries. Reach out to people. Volunteer. Spend some time with Mind or CALM.

Put down the flag and put your money and compassion where your mouth is.

I may be mocked for being a white, male Christian in England and spouting off all this rubbish. What do I know?

But if you really read what I have said, you will probably find I am right. Reign it in. Do a good thing for people who really need it this Pride season. Maybe we could all stand to remember what we were fighting for: Equality. And now we have it. Let’s help those who don’t.

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