There’s something odd

You know, I just realised that there’s something odd going on in the world. We’ve recently had major earthquake, terror attack and rioting in the streets.

And no-one has been blaming the gays.

There are many struggles still to engage in and many places where LGBT people have little dignity, no human rights and minimal hope of change.

But we’re winning.

This video’s becoming history not commentary:


  1. Agatha says

    Ok, if you want an argument put forward, here’s one. Gay marriage stretches the idea of family beyond the traditional norm. Indeed I have read here on these pages that family is a dirty word and I should not be calling my local GP my family doctor. But if family is then a tarnished idea and children and young people have no respect for their families they will create an alternative “family” in gang culture and/or have no respect for the community of families around them. With dire consequences.

    So can we have gay marriage but still within families please?

  2. No Agatha – family is not a dirty word, it is just not accurate to speak of family doctors when lots of us don’t happen to live like that. Referring to someone’s doctor as their family doctor when they are single (for example) may well be heard as an example of discourtesy to them. However. saying so does not convey any moral judgement about people for whom the word family does describe how they live.

    Nor is family tarnished. There are simply good experiences of being in families and there are bad ones.

    Most of the same-sex couples I know who have ceremonies would describe them as great family occasions. Not all would however.

    Oh, and I’m dead against gay marriage by the way. It is marriage that a lot of people would like gay couples to have access to, not gay marriage.

    I’d have thought that the idea of a straight couple who are married but without children challenges the idea of family just as far as a same-sex couple could ever do in any case.

  3. Amen. The history of the ugly ideology dressed up as “Family Values” suggest that , at best, a gay person uncritically accepting the term is a bit like the proverbial turkey-voting-for-Christmas (not that it’s only gays who have problems with it of course).

    The NHS is for everyone, and single people (not to mention widows etc) pay tax too. One can understand politicians having to play the family values card, or woo the mad MILFs of mumsnet in order to get elected. But Doctors adopting (or, in fairness, being forced to adopt) such language is an absurd capitulation to the exlusionary and inappropriate.

    And on purely aesthetic grounds “General Practitioner” is useful and (in the best sense) technical whereas “Family Doctor” is twee and stupid (“hi, I was wondering if you could help me. I just broke up with my wife, and she got custody of the kids – can I still see the “Family Doctor”, or should I just stick to the locum”)

    There have been gangs for centuries too, and I’d guess that at least some of the kids pretending to be Bloods and Crips are acting for reasons not a million miles from stealing trainers because they look cool.

  4. Rosemary Hannah says

    It is a monstrous modern idea that ‘family’ only refers to a married heterosexual coupling with the intent of procreation. My son and his husband are part of my family – part of five kids, and their husbands, and partners and children, variously assorted, and also a sub-set family of their own. Indeed, three of my grandchildren, though ‘only’ cousins, are very close and supportive of each other. Although my husband pushed off with another woman, I too am still part of a family – still mother to my children and a grand-mother as well. Family is an odd sort of a thing. Elastic, various. There is a heck of a lot more to it than one couple and 1.98 kids, or whatever. In the same way, when we were together the ex and I were still daughter and son to parents, and parents to our children, and cousins to other people.

  5. Rosemary Hannah says

    And in case that does not sound quite as I meat it to, so too are Ruth and her husband and their children a sub-set family, as indeed are my youngest and his partner… what I mean is, as well as being a family-couple, they are also part of a larger thing.

  6. Yes Rosemary. Though, that monstrous idea of the family that you outline does seem very often to be what people mean by the word and is, I think, very much what it means in both political discourse and much modern parlance.

    Also, as I’ve said to someone else earlier today in another context, my experience is that the more the word family is used in a church context, the more likely it is as a gay man that I will be treated badly.

    I am part of a family. However, I don’t live in a family and I don’t have a family doctor. I have a GP.

  7. Rosemary Hannah says

    It is an unhistoric use of family (from me this is a REAL insult) and it is an untrue use of family, and deeply unhelpful. I wonder if the modern use of family contributes to the willingness to cause people to move for work, and to weaken family (proper extended family) bonds, and so contributes to a much weaker social support for the little modern nuclear family.

    On the other hand, Jesus had almost nothing positive to say about families at all, and did a lot to weaken their grip on people.

    On the other hand, his brother ended up running the church after his death, and his mother stood by his cross.

    Is it like wealth? Useful when it empowers us, and to be ditched when it entraps us? And can humans actually cope with the level of maturity that suggests? Oh, for a question and answer session with Jesus – but then what a slippery fish he was in those.

  8. Rosemary Hannah says

    p.s. I believe I have a health centre where there are assorted G.P.s – I have not actually needed it/them since moving, and hope to avoid them a bit longer yet. Health centres are useful because you can dodge individual medical practitioners you do not warm towards while getting a qualified person at pretty short notice if the one you first thought of is not there that day. I don’t want a relationship – I want to dip into help on odd occasions.

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