Hey everyone I am to some extent a creature of habit as I suppose are we all and on most Sunday’s I like to take it easy and maybe go for a walk in the village. Well it’s the perfect way to end the day of rest.
The village I refer to isn’t Baillieston where I have lived for almost 14 years but my one of my virtual villages. This it’s the village otherwise known as facebook.
To me that is exactly what your online community is a virtual village and as landlord or in my case landlady you have to be responsible at least to some extent for the actions of all of those who you give residence in what is after all your social space.
Normally I have no problem with any of my lot, they are a good bunch coming as they do from a wide range of social and cultural backgrounds, and a reasonably diverse range of political opinions. Bearing those facts in mind we can and often do have good robust debates whilst respecting the rights of others to hold views with which we disagree. Well it’s a village I want not an echo chamber.
However tonight I was on one of walkabouts and I saw something which was truly alarming. More than that, it was so horrific it actually turned my stomach.
Now I am not naturally queasy but what I saw tonight would have made me physically sick had I not been furious beyond all measure.
You see as this is the weekend of London’s LGBT pride and the more importantly the weekend that United States Supreme Court ruled that equal marriage was legal in all 50 states, I was going for a stroll just to see how many people had hung up rainbow banners on their profile pictures and I have to say I am proud of my villagers tonight.
It truly was a wonderful sight to behold, all those rainbow flags waving proudly and good and valued friends making a stand for equality locally, nationally, and globally. Around 10 to 12 per cent of my friends had done their bit for equality and these included some of the biggest names in the neighbourhood such as my 2012 woman of the year Althea Maxwell, prominent spoken word performers Chris Young, Fay Roberts, Jenni Pascoe, and Stephen Watt, Musicians Bob Leslie, Laura Jane Wilkie, and Louise Bichan, and theatrical types such as Gary Maguire, Kellie and Sharlene Mitchell and Michelle Sloan.
The political activists were also prominent amongst rainbow supporters. Included in their number were The Liberal Democrats Caron Lindsay and a number of SNP members. Well they are the dominant political voice in my social space, I think that may have something to do with the fact I am a card carrying party member. Amongst those showing support were my local councillor Austin Sheridan and the new leader of the SNP trade union group Kirsteen Fraser.
I have to say however, I was reminded that the Osmonds once sang a song entitled one bad apple and I was unlucky enough to find it amongst this great harvest of humanity. On a night where the rest of the world sang in harmony as one global chorus I saw something truly evil lurking in my mist. What I saw was not reminiscent of a 21st century carnival of culture and hope. This was time travel to a land where happiness would I am sure have been outlawed and Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny derided as creatures of Satan. Yes believe me it really was that bad and I am not someone given to over exaggeration
You see, what I saw was one male I hesitate to use the term
man who had posted a photograph of a rainbow flag being burned with the words I will never support gay marriage emblazoned across it. This kind act is a far as I am concerned completely and totally vile and is an obscene act of ill informed prejudice against the LGBTI community. Needless to say the minute I saw this disgusting picture he was evicted from my village without delay.
The abuser’s comments demonstrate his ignorance of the issue which the rest of us believe to be a cause for celebration. I say this to raise what though some may see as a pedantic point. Pedantic as the point may be it is nonetheless an important one. You see there is no such thing as gay marriage what we celebrate is equal marriage. Whilst this may primarily be of benefit to gay men and lesbians it also beneficial to the transsexual population. This means it also applies to trans women such as myself and therefore could significantly improve the quality of life of the trans community. Therefore to see something so disgusting advocating discrimination against the LGBTI population is in my view completely, and totally reprehensible and reminds me more of Mississippi than the Maryhill area where I grew up.
These kind of views remind me of the America of KKK to a far greater extent than they ever will the Scotland of the SNP. If I am completely honest and I will be these kind of outrageous opinions are more likely to make me think of 1930’s Germany rather than the Scotland or Britain of 2015
One note of relief is that the male who posted this image now lives in London and believe me the people of London have my sympathy. That however is not said in any sense of smugness but rather as a timely reminder to guard against complacency. Our rights to be able to live our lives in the way we know we must were not easily won but they could be very easily lost if we don’t guard them with all we have. If that means losing a friend or two along the way be they virtual or otherwise then that I believe is a price worth paying in the name of diversity, equality and fairness.
I finish by saying the person who wrote this vile garbage was not someone I knew well, indeed it is doubtful if I ever had any meaningful dialogue with him but that said this kind of behaviour cannot and will not be tolerated by me let alone accepted. There is however despite his evil rant one thing this foaming at the mouth bigot forgot and that is he can breath all the fire and brimstone he likes but there is inescapable truth from which he can never run and that truth is this no matter how many people try to tell him otherwise even the darkest flames of hell can never burn a rainbow.
Love And Best Wishes