I’ve always hated the phrase “no offence, but”. It invariably acts as a half-arsed apology for blatantly offending the listener, and usually comes form a self-imagined liberal, about to say something horrifically un-PC (perish the thought!). Tell me if any of the following sounds familiar
“I don’t want to sound racist, but those Guatemalans are all criminals”
“No offence, but you people ARE stealing our jobs and women (durka-dur optional)”
“With all due respect, I think something should be done about them”
See the little shuffle there? The two-step disclaimer switcharoo? “I’m prefacing this by distancing myself from my opinion, and now you can’t get angry because i’m oh so very sensitive, especially given that i’m about to unleash my barely-concealed prejudice directly in your face”. Absolutely horrible, isn’t it? The only thing worse than these pathetic preambles is being forced to write one.
I haven’t a homophobic bone in my body. As far as I’m concerned anybody can rub their bits against anybody else’s to their hearts content as long as it’s mutually consensual, and I hope everyone has a great time. Should gays be allowed get married? Fuck yes, if they want to enter into the biggest social scam in the world then by all means, welcome in! Visitation rights? Of course, why the hell not? Adoption? Damn straight. A good home for a child is a good home for a child and is certainly not defined by some sort of labia count. Should gay people be allowed to drive cars? Yes! They probably do it the same as everyone else does! Should gay people in fact be treated exactly the same way as heterosexuals in every single way? Clue : saying no is retarded.
So we’re agreed. Equal rights for homeosexuals, bisexuals, and transgender individuals. Hurrah! Now. It’s time to talk equal RESPONSIBILITY. That’s right, the word that strikes fear and mistrust into the heart of every foul-mouthed son/daughter/miscellaneous of Kathleen Ni Houlihan. Should homosexuals be expected to take verbal abuse for their sexual expression? Of course not.
(here it comes)
Should they be given special treatment in how they react to this kind of provocation?
http://www.facebook.com/SPARIreland/posts/522421137778530?comment_id=6189486¬if_t=like, in case anybody’s interested, is what sparked this off. For anyone not logged in or inclined to follow the link, here’s the text of a complaint from a gentleman posted on the SPAR ireland page
So last night myself and Emmett Daly went out for a few drinks together, during our nightly ritual of getting a roll in Spar on Georges street we kissed in the shop. The security gaurd then came over to us and told us to ”take it back into the George you faggots’. Emmett then asked if we were a straight couple who kissed would u asked us to leave and go back to Coppers? I then dragged Emmett towards the deli and the security gaurd followed and again told us to get out of the shop ‘you faggots’ .. Emmett then pushed him away in retaliation after which two lads pinned him to the ground and was practically strangling him, he now has cuts all over his face and is some amount of pain .. People today are losing their jobs .. its 2013 and the shop is three seconds from two of the biggest gay bars in Dublin, WHAT THEE FUCK!?
Sad story really, at least the first part of it. The two lads in question apparently took a bit of the verbal from a security guard who clearly had no place in a public-facing job and by the account above has some sort of homophobic prejudice that there’s absolutely no excuse for. None. Really. the term “faggot” should be used ONLY in the following circumstances
1. By straight men to describe straight men when they’re acting like straight women
2. By homosexuals themselves, as it’s “their” word
And obviously never, ever by a straight person describing a gay person. I’ll save you the pontification on “bad” words for another time. The long and the short is that the two lads were subjected to a bit of inappropriate and discriminatory language, which shouldn’t happen in any shop of any kind. If it were one of my staff calling a customer “faggot” they’d obviously be hearing about it at great, great length. This kind of abuse isn’t appropriate in the slightest.
And so the story ends. Oh hang on a minute…
the security gaurd followed and again told us to get out of the shop ‘you faggots’ .. Emmett then pushed him away in retaliation after which two lads pinned him to the ground and was practically strangling him, he now has cuts all over his face and is some amount of pain
So the reaction to this most commonplace of abuse was physical violence? Oh dear gentlemen, you’ve just lost the argument. I know, I know, you’ve never taken a bit of stick before, nor have you ever seen the point in being the bigger men and walking away from a small-minded bigot. No, you decided to righteously defend your honour by physically assaulting a stranger. well done!
BUT WAIT THERE’S MORE
two lads pinned him to the ground and was practically strangling him
Gardai have begun enquiries into a local vigilante group known only as “two lads”. Seriously, does this retelling not sound like a schoolboy in front of a teacher trying to gloss over the part where he set the art room on fire but Mike TOTALLY called him fat first ?
What’s the point of all this? Simple. These young fellas might have been on the wrong end of the f-word (No, not that one. Or that one. YES! no, wait, no, the next one. Yeah. F-word number 4), but to start swinging at a security guard and then make the kind of public complaint that serves only to dare ANYONE not supporting them to be labelled homophobic is ridiculous, and that’s taking aside the fact that it appears to have been written by an 8 year old.
There’s a time and a place for complete over-reaction to prejudice while maintaining a constant victim mentality. It’s called Israel.