We are in an “isn’t politics awful yet predictable” phase at the moment. Our LibDem coalition performs badly in the local council elections, while Labour does very well gaining 823 seats. So suddenly, members of the coalition start saying that the reason why they’ve done so badly is nothing to do with scaring everyone into panic buying petrol, the granny tax, getting rid of the 50% tax rate for the super-rich, cosying up to Rupert Murdoch and the austerity measures which are removing leaders all over Europe, but it’s due to the fact that everyone in the country hates gay marriage – something which Labour support.
You do not have to be doing a dissertation in political theory to recognise this for the cheap distraction tactic that it is. Rather than listening to the message that the country is telling them “We hate the cuts and we hate you”, they’ve decided to become even more conservative. Well enjoy the next three years LibDems before you’re booted out and gay marriage comes in anyway.
My favourite bonkers Tory at the moment is Nadine Dorries. She’s a classic old-school 1980s Tory – so right-wing that she hates Cameron and Osborne for being softy liberal posh elite boys. Writing an analysis of what went wrong at the local elections, Nadine trots out that old Tory favourite – blame the gays – in this statement on her blog.
“Gay marriage is a policy which has been pursued by the metro elite gay activists and needs to be put into the same bin [as Lords reform]. I have yet to meet a gay couple in my constituency or beyond who support it; in fact, the reaction has been quite the opposite. Great Britain and its gay couples don’t live on Canal Street in Manchester, shop in The Lanes in Brighton or socialise at Gaydar in London. Gay couples are no different from heterosexual couples and yet this policy transforms them into political agitators who have set themselves against the church and community.”
Yes, she actually wrote those words. In 2012. Let’s dissect this bizarre statement piece by piece.
“Gay marriage is a policy which has been pursued by the metro elite gay activists”. Just who are these Metro Elite Gay Activists – or MEGA-gays as Nadine Dorries claims? I have this picture in my head of a haughty cartoon gay couple called Ivan and Tarquin, living in a swanky loft somewhere near Primrose Hill. Ivan (wearing only a silk kimono and AussieBum knickers) is booking joint botox appointments for them both (via Siri on his iPhone 4S of course), while Tarquin is liberally drizzling extra virgin olive oil over some lightly toasted focaccia in preparation of a secret meeting of the MEGA-gays who are plotting to take over the world. Nadine doesn’t name any of these MEGA-gays because, of course, they don’t actually exist. They’re a pretend construct she invented. It’s all part of the new “clever” homophobia. This is how homophobes think in 2012: Oh drat, we can’t go around saying we hate gay people anymore like we did in the 1980s (it’s all Europe’s fault and political correctness, oh for the 1950s when you could just lock ‘em up, give ‘em electric shocks or give ‘em drugs so they’d grow tits – that was a golden age!) So rather than saying we hate gay people, let’s reserve all of our bile for “gay activists” – that tiny minority of stroppy militant unreasonable gays who all the other gays actually hate. Because let’s face it, most gay people aren’t political at all – they’re just happy watching clips of The Golden Girls on YouTube, staring mindlessly at the Grindr app, pining after unattainable heterosexuals, saying “you go girl!” to our female friends and dancing to Donna Summer (or k.d. lang if lesbians). That’s all they want. This enormous “apolitical” mass of gay people can be safely ignored – and instead the gay elite militants must be destroyed. Because, when they’re dealt with … we can turn our attention to the disco-dancing sheep …
Back to Nadine: “I have yet to meet a gay couple in my constituency or beyond who support it; in fact, the reaction has been quite the opposite.” How odd. Who are these gay couples who our Nadine is spending so much of her time with? Can you imagine a dinner party at her house? She invites all her gay couple friends round and they spend the evening talking about how much they don’t want to be married. “Oh Nadine, we HATE the very idea of gay marriage. Why on EARTH would we want ANY form of EQUALITY? You must write one of your fabulous columns in the DAILY MAIL telling everyone that all the gays in Britain just love being unequal to straights. Oh and by the way, I LOVE your BLONDE BANGS DARLING! YOU GO GIRL!”
“Great Britain and its gay couples don’t live on Canal Street in Manchester, shop in The Lanes in Brighton or socialise at Gaydar in London” Well my scene-obsessed friend Kevin, who loves those places, assures me that they’re full of gay couples and he can’t think how Nadine missed them. Perhaps she was off her head on hallucinogenic drugs when she was visiting them so while everyone else saw a load of gay couples, she saw a flock of multicoloured unicorns or something. Easily done.
“Gay couples are no different from heterosexual couples and yet this policy transforms them into political agitators who have set themselves against the church and community.” Erm yes, we are different from heterosexual couples. And I’m not talking about our dislike of sitting on white plastic garden furniture and eating from B+Q Barbecues. We’re different because we can’t get married.
Well Nadine, I wish you could hold me up as an example of a MEGA-gay, but I’m afraid I’m actually more like one of your invisible majority provincial gays. I live in a semi in a respectable little northern town that has a population of 46,000. I haven’t been to Canal Street in years and my Saturday nights are spent at home watching telly. Yet funnily enough, even though I’m not a MEGA-gay, I’d like to have gay marriage all the same, and I’d love you to come round my house and meet my partner (he’s a Scouser, just like you). We promise to serve you egg and chips, not any of that metro elite gay activist Italian flatbread nonsense. We can even have it on a tray while we watch The Voice. Because clearly you are mixing with the wrong sort of gays. Or you’re lying. Which is it lady?