I still don’t care about sport: I don’t understand it at all, all I know is that there are some really gorgeous specimens on my television and BBC 1 HD is more than happy to broadcast them live all day long.
I’m not sure that Lord Reith said that the aim of the BBC was to ‘Inform, Educate, Entertain and Arouse’, but anyway…
You know, one day, some leftie-PC-brigade reform — probably gay marriage — is going to send the Daily Mail and its awful readers over the edge. Then they’re going to build an Ark and set sail from Londonistan (as they call it) to wherever they think is more in line with their laughably authoritarian and theocratic views — Iran, I suppose.
You know what? I’ll help them, I really fucking will. I’ll even smash some champagne over the side, christen the ship and wave Britain’s worst inhabitants goodbye.
Oxford University students will no longer have to wear gender-specific academic clothing after concerns it was unfair to the transgender community.
It will mean men can attend formal occasions in skirts and stockings and women in suits and bow ties.
The new rules come after a motion by the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Queer society (LGBTQ Soc) was passed by the students’ union earlier this year.
The changes, to start from 4 August, have now been agreed by the university.” —
Good for Oxford. Glad to see they’re making good progress on LGBT issues. (Though I think I’ll stick with the suit).
Let’s remember the politics of marriage itself. The simplistic formula that claims “you’re either pro-marriage or against equality” makes us forget that all forms of marriage perpetuate gender, racial and economic inequality. It mistakenly assumes that support for marriage is the only good measure of support for LGBT communities. This political moment calls for anti-homophobic politics that centralize anti-racism and anti-poverty. Marriage is a coercive state structure that perpetuates racism and sexism through forced gender and family norms. Right wing pro-marriage rhetoric has targeted families of color and poor families, supported a violent welfare and child protection system, vilified single parents and women, and marginalized queer families of all kinds. Expanding marriage to include a narrow band of same-sex couples only strengthens that system of marginalization and supports the idea that the state should pick which types of families to reward and recognize and which to punish and endanger.
We still demand a queer political agenda that centralizes the experiences of prisoners, poor people, immigrants, trans people, and people with disabilities. We reject a gay agenda that pours millions of dollars into campaigns for access to oppressive institutions for a few that stand to benefit.
We are being told marriage is the way to solve gay people’s problems with health care access, immigration, child custody, and symbolic equality. It does not solve these problems, and there are real campaigns and struggles that would and could approach these problems for everyone, not just for a privileged few. Let’s take the energy and money being put into gay marriage and put it toward real change: opposing the War on Terror and all forms of endless war; supporting queer prisoners and building a movement to end imprisonment; organizing against police profiling and brutality in our communities; fighting attacks on welfare, public housing and Medicaid; fighting for universal health care that is trans and reproductive healthcare inclusive; fighting to tax wealth not workers; fighting for a world in which no one is illegal.” —Dean Spade and Crag Willse in I Still Think Marriage is the Wrong Goal (via spittingonhegel)
‘Leftie Multicultural Crap’, raved Tory MP Aiden Burley, apparently annoyed by the fact that the opening ceremony featured ‘all these rappers’. Of course, Burley’s definition of ‘leftie multicultural crap’ is somewhat suspect, especially given that this is a man who wasn’t too bothered by being caught attending a Nazi themed stag party and drinking toasts to Hitler. I liked the Olympic Opening Ceremony, even if I’d had most of a bottle of wine; and I like it even more in the knowledge that Aiden Burley, who is a total twat, and the cretinous Toby Young both hated it.
Whilst I disagree with the wording and the sentiment employed by crypto-Nazi-cum-Tory Aiden Burley, he’s kind of right. Danny Boyle did a pretty good job of pushing some of my tipsy Lefty buttons. Never let it be said that Lefties hate fun! I mean, there was a massive long overture to the NHS, including the letters being formed from hundreds of shining hospital beds. There was, I saw in the mix, also a celebration of the Suffragettes, and of Windrush, which I wasn’t necessarily expecting. For sure, the ‘history’ of Britain presented, if one can dignify it like that, minimised the suffering of workers in the Industrian Revolution (certainly there was no dramatic staging of Engels’ The Condition of the Working Classes in England), and basically entirely skipped over the role of the slave trade, and over the Empire. It was, as one would say on Tumblr, problematic. But it was also a pretty decent spectacle, and one that celebrated immigration, inclusion and socialist medicine. I hope some Republicans turned off their televisions in disgust in the USA.
Of course, the most awkward moments for our post-imperial Olympics all came during the procession of athletes from different countries. The most awkward moment, at least in my hazy recollection was when the Indian team came out, and the camera cut to the Queen, who looked positively morose. It must be awkward, coming to the throne in 1952, and finally hosting an Olympics when the Empire’s gone. Certainly, she wasn’t the only one who thought so, and a bunch of Tories and the ever hateful Piers Morgan (sorry, we had to send him to you, America), all tweeted about wanting an Empire. Uch. Furthermore, the commentators useless and inane comments on ‘third world countries’ and how poor, at war, or oppressed they were got pretty tedious. Stick to sport next time, guys. That said, even the athlete’s parade made me proud, seeing the athletes under the International Olympic Flag not giving a fuck; seeing the female athletes that were taking part of the first time, and in some cases even carrying the flag; seeing the Palestinian team. All good moments. Much better than a spray tanned Tom Daley. He’s not very interesting with his top on.
Of course it was multicultural; over two hundred nations were represented. And some who weren’t representing a nation at all. I take back at least some of my cynicism, but the Tube is still packed, and McDonalds is still the official restaurant of the Olympic Games. And there’s still an official bikini line trimmer. Why?
I really only have three gripes.
1. Paul McCartney. WHY? Haven’t we suffered enough?
2. Auntie B cutting away from the fireworks at the end for their power ballads and clips from past Olympics. Stupid decision, obviously everyone wanted to see the fireworks.
3. When they revealed Steve Redgrave, it was done in such a poor and anticlimactic way; his identity should’ve been better hidden until he made it into the actual stadium. Poor planning, Auntie.
Other than that, it far surpassed my (admittedly low) expectations of what we might pull off. And there was no Boris to be seen — our crowning mercy.