Friday, April 11, 2008

homophobia in british society

so the grauniad reports last week that according to a new survey, homophobia is rife in british society. since i have this bifurcated life, where i was this supposed hetero during my life in the uk, and after i left i came out and have lived in the us only as a homosexual (except, i think, from when i was born until i was almost 3) ... well, i have no real idea of how it is to be gay in the uk.

the paper notes that bullying in school is increasing, and the sense of discrimination in public life is great. read the piece here.

i recall attitudes during my sheltered life in london in the eighties and nineties in microcosm via the taunts i heard at football stadia across the country. personally i was only targeted for being fat and female. other chants tended, however, to be mainly racist and anti-semitic, e.g., monkey noises and throwing bananas at black players, and songs like "one man went to gas, went to gas a yiddo". when i go to matches these days, it appears that society is now open and accepting enough to include homophobic chants as well, e.g., "player x takes it up the bum", or "so-and-so is gay" and in a magnificent synthesis of prejudices, "african player x has aids".

enough to make you despair, eh? qpr are off to hull tomorrow. a couple of years ago after the explosions in london, the hull "fans" chanted, "you're just a town full of bombers". *sigh*

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