Gay Men: A Problem After All

Owen Jones reports on what happens when a game of victimhood poker takes place when normal people have long left the table:

Racism is a serious problem within the LGBT community and needs to be addressed. Despite the determination of many minority ethnic LGBT people to do just that, it is not happening. “How can I be a bigot when I am myself a member of an oppressed minority?” is a prevailing attitude among some white LGBT people.

An attitude which prevails because of years of browbeating people into believing bigotry is based on who you are and not what you do or say.

But another far more pernicious reason is that the LGBT world revolves around white gay men to the exclusion of others.

So white gay men are a problem now? Here’s what I said the other day:

And that will be their downfall: they are so mainstream they won’t be able to maintain this minority, victim status for much longer and it is a matter of time before they come into conflict with the feminists and transgender lobbyists in the victimhood stakes.  Give it a few years and we’ll see gay men being discriminated against and passed over in favour of other designated victim groups simply for being men – gay or not.

Let me just swap out “a few years” for “a few months”.  Back to Owen:

According to research by FS magazine, an astonishing 80% of black men, 79% of Asian men and 75% of south Asian men have experienced racism on the gay scene.

This manifests itself in numerous ways. Some are rejected because of their ethnicity; on the other hand, some are objectified because of it. On dating sites and apps, profiles abound that say “no Asians” or “no black people”, casually excluding entire ethnic groups.

People have physical preferences when selecting a sexual partner?  Who knew?  Of course, this has been known for years in relation to heterosexual dating sites, but by implying it is unique to gays Owen Jones can get paid to write a column on it.

It’s like a “bastardised ‘No dogs, no blacks, no Irish’ signs”, as Anthony Lorenzo puts it. “On apps like Grindr,” writes Matthew Rodriguez, “gay men brandish their racial dating preferences with all the same unapologetic bravado that straight men reserve for their favourite baseball team.”

Grindr is an app for gay men to hook-up with one another for meaningless one-time sex.  How odd that this should not only contain users’ preferences but also boorish behaviour.  But here’s what I wrote the other day:

I genuinely think within five years we’ll have seen a case where an escort or prostitute is sued for discrimination, and dating apps and websites are being put under pressure to remove preferences based on race and other criteria.

We’re moving in that direction, aren’t we? Back to Owen:

Homi tells me he has Persian ancestry, and is “sometimes mistaken for being Greek, Italian, Spanish, etc”. Once, at a nightclub, he was relentlessly pursued by a fellow patron. Eventually, he was asked: “Where are you from?” When Homi answered India, the man was horrified. “I’m so sorry – I don’t do Indians! Indians are not my type.”

This suggests it is not appearance or skin colour that is the issue, but cultural background.  Presumably this isn’t important in homosexual relationships.

And it is not simply a western phenomenon. Luan, a Brazilian journalist, tells me his country has a “Eurocentric image of beauty” and there is a “cult of the white man, which is absurd, given more than half the population is black or brown”.

Thanks heavens this is not true of heterosexuals and Owen is able to provide us with a rare insight into race relations in Brazil through the prism of gay dating.

Others speak of their experiences of being rejected by door staff at LGBT venues. Michel, a south Asian man, tells me of being turned away because “you don’t look gay”, and being called a “dirty Paki”. He says it has got worse since the Orlando nightclub massacre, where the gunman was Muslim.

The gunman was Muslim?  I’m glad that’s been cleared up.

And then there’s the other side of the equation: objectification. Malik tells about his experiences of what he describes as the near “fetishisation” of race. The rejection of people based on ethnicity is bad enough, he says, “but it can be just as gross when someone reduces you to your ethnicity, without consent, when dating/hooking up”. His Arab heritage was objectified and stereotyped by some would-be lovers, even down to presuming his sexual role.

I can sympathise.  Coming from Wales, everybody assumes I prefer sheep to women.  That they are wholly correct on this point does not negate the fact that I am nonetheless subject to appalling racist bigotry based on where I was born.

When the Royal Vauxhall Tavern – a famed London LGBT venue – hosted a “blackface” drag act, Chardine Taylor-Stone launched the Stop Rainbow Racism campaign. The drag act featured “exaggerated neck rolling, finger snapping displays of ‘sassiness’, bad weaves” and other racial stereotypes, she says.

Whereas they should have just stuck to limp-wristed mincing and avoided mimicking stereotypical behaviour.

LGBT publications are guilty too. Historically, they’ve been dominated by white men, have neglected issues of race, and have portrayed white men as objects of beauty.

How dare they.

There has been positive change in recent months, one leading black gay journalist tells me, but only because of the work of ethnic minority LGBT individuals “holding magazines to account, setting up their own nights across the scene” and using social media, blogs, podcasts and boycotts to force change.

That rumbling sound you can hear is the bus under which white gay men are about to be thrown.

While LGBT people are much more likely than heterosexuals to suffer from mental distress, the level is even higher among ethnic minorities. Undoubtedly, racism plays a role. As Rodriguez puts it, seeing dating app profiles rejecting entire ethnic groups causes “internalised racism, decreased self-esteem and psychological distress.”

Trawling dating apps doesn’t bring happiness?  Who would have thought?

Many of the rights and freedoms that all LGBT people won were down to the struggles of black and minority ethnic people: at the Stonewall riots, for example,non-white protesters. The least that white LGBT people can do is to reciprocate and confront racism within their own ranks. Shangela, an actor, tells me that racism from the LGBT community “hurts more because it’s coming from people that I’m meant to share a kinship with”.

That’s the problem with expecting people to share your values based on their subscription to various victim groups.

The far-right movements on the march across the western world are consciously trying to co-opt the LGBT rights campaign for their own agenda.

Beware the rise of the Queermacht!

This week, Milo Yiannopolous – a gay attention-seeker who has become an icon of the US far right – was at the centre of a media storm because a platform to speak at his old school was withdrawn. In the Netherlands, the anti-immigrant right was led by a gay man, Pim Fortuyn, until his assassination. In France, reportedly a third of married gay couples support the far-right National Front.

Why, it’s almost as if a person’s sexual preferences don’t define their politics.

Being oppressed yourself does not mean you are incapable of oppressing others: far from it.

And the basis of 99% of Grievance Studies courses in American academia collapses in a heap.

What’s the opposite of a rose tint?

From the BBC (which considers this front-page news):

Comedian Ellen DeGeneres was praised by the US president for her influence on the gay rights movement as she received the country’s highest civilian honour.

Barack Obama said it was easy to forget the risk Ellen DeGeneres took to come out as gay in 1997.

He said her bravery helped “push our country in the direction of justice”.

“It’s easy to forget now, when we’ve come so far… just how much courage was required for Ellen to come out on the most public of stages almost 20 years ago,” he said during the award ceremony at the White House.

“What an incredible burden that was to bear – to risk your career like that – people don’t do that very often. And then, to have the hopes of millions on your shoulders.”

It is probably easy to forget how far we’ve come in twenty years because it’s equally easy to remember what 1997 was like, and a hotbed of homophobia the western world was not.

I was in university in 1997, the year Tony Blair won the General Election for Labour with no little help from Peter Mandelson.  Julien Clary was a household name and Graham Norton was getting there.  Diana died in 1997 and Elton John – who came out of the closet in 1976, when times really were different – wrote a song for her which reached number one on the singles chart.  The Mardis Gras was a mainstream event in Manchester, and Canal Street was as much a feature of the city as Maine Road.

Perhaps New York was different, and perhaps women coming out as gay was less common, and hence more difficult, than it was for men.  I just get the feeling there are vested interests out there trying to convince people that twenty years ago the world was a darker place than it was, and any progress is due to the benevolent actions of our enlightened political classes.  So we must grant them more power and allow them to intrude more deeply into our personal lives, of course.

Obama would have had a stronger point had he said 1987, and definitely 1977.  But 1997?  Nah.  Sex and the City hit the screens in 1998, and the (many) references to gay life and culture in there were hardly shocking.  Philadelphia came out in cinemas in 1993.  Things have improved to some degree of course, but I think any changes in public attitudes towards gays in the last 20 years have come almost exclusively from the older generations dying out and being replaced by people for whom homosexuality is unremarkable.

The Costs of the Paris Agreement Confirmed

There’s a rather stunning admission by Nicolas Sarkozy in this BBC report on the climate summit taking place in Morocco:

Away from the conference the former French President Nicolas Sarkozy has been calling for a carbon tax on US goods if President Trump follows through on his promise to walk away from the Paris deal.

“Donald Trump has said – we’ll see if he keeps this promise – that he won’t respect the conclusions of the Paris climate agreement,” Mr Sarkozy, who is a candidate for next year’s French presidential elections, told the TF1 television channel on Sunday.

“Well, I will demand that Europe put in place a carbon tax at its border, a tax of 1%-3%, for all products coming from the United States, if the United States doesn’t apply environmental rules that we are imposing on our companies.”

So it is confirmed, then: this Paris agreement will impose costs of 1-3% on European companies and, by extension, consumers.  Thank goodness we are all so fabulously well-off and European (especially French) companies so unburdened by deadweight costs that a 1-3% arbitrary increase in costs will go unnoticed!

And retaliatory tariffs are always such a good idea, particularly if imposed because another country declines to regulate its own industries out of existence.

Remind me why Britain voted to leave, again?

This also amused:

The Paris climate agreement will survive a Trump presidency says the US special envoy on climate change Dr Jonathan Pershing.

US lead negotiator Dr Pershing told a packed news briefing that the passion and dedication displayed in the effort to deliver the Paris treaty was strong enough to withstand the impacts of Trump presidency.

Passion and dedication? This Dr Pershing sounds like an England football manager explaining away their latest defeat.  He might be in for a rude awakening in a few months.

Begging Questions at the House of Lords

For some reason the House of Lords has decided to include me in the distribution of their media notices, so every few days I get a heads-up on what they’ll be discussing.  The one I received yesterday was entitled:

“LORDS TO QUIZ MINISTERS ON ENVIRONMENT AND CLIMATE CHANGE POLICY AFTER BREXIT”

and the session will be as follows:

The EU Energy and Environment Sub-Committee will continue its short inquiry on environment and climate change policy after Brexit on Wednesday 16 November. The Committee will hear evidence from Ministers Thérèse Coffey MP and Jesse Norman MP.

The session will explore what action the Government intends to take to maintain current levels of environmental protection and climate action. The Committee will also examine what oversight and enforcement mechanisms the Government expects to apply to environmental legislation, and the means by which the Government will engage with the EU on environment and climate change issues in the future.

What made me chuckle  was this:

The Committee is likely to ask:

How does the UK intend to maintain its role as a global leader on climate change?

It’s often you find a sentence begging two questions instead of one, but the House of Lords has managed it.

Firstly, the assumption that the UK is a “global leader” on climate change.  I think that can be explained here.

Secondly, who says the UK intends to maintain any such role?

Can anyone tell me, is this what the House of Lords is supposed to be doing?  Grilling MPs over how they will tackle climate change post-Brexit?  I’m fairly certain this wasn’t in the original job description, was it?

The Media Keeps Digging

Having utterly disgraced themselves over the course of the US Presidential Election campaigns, one would have hoped the world’s media would now be engaging in some humble self-examination to understand where they went so catastrophically wrong and how they might improve their reporting in future and thus save their entire industry from oblivion.

But then again these are media types, and they are pathologically incapable of any such action.  Consider this from the BBC:

Despite their cordiality, Mr Trump has vowed to dismantle much of President Obama’s legacy. That includes Obamacare, the act extending medical insurance to more Americans than ever before.

Evil Trump, eh?  Undoing The Messiah’s generosity of providing more medical insurance than ever before!  But why not mention that Obamacare is fast shaping up to be an unworkable disaster and people have been hit with skyrocketting premiums – something which almost certainly would have helped persuade them to vote for Trump?  Ah, because that would detract from the narrative, the same shameless narrative that has been playing since Trump announced his intention to run.

This excerpt was taken from a report on the anti-Trump protests, which the media are falling over themselves to cover.  They are working overtime to generative the narrative that Trump is deeply unpopular and his policies are forcing people to come out in protest, even though their numbers are miniscule and they represent the lunatic fringe of the American Left.  I expect the media will keep this up and before Trump even takes office he will be described as “the most unpopular President in history”, “embattled”, and “under fire”; his policies will be called “controversial” if a single student at Berkeley complains; and headlines will read “Is Trump’s Presidency failing?”

I have every confidence that the American people will turn away from their media in disgust, as they did during the campaign, leaving them to face the economic consequences.  Trump and his administration should automatically disregard any criticism of his policies or Presidency based on polling data or media mouthpieces, and should remind them at every opportunity how they utterly failed the American people by the coverage of the election.

And back home, Theresa May should end the BBC’s charter immediately and let them figure out how to make money selling this garbage instead of forcing people to pay for it.

Who will be the Democrats’ Corbyn?

Further to my previous post, there is another grave mistake the Democrats and their supporters are making, one which has parallels in the UK.  Consider the article I linked to earlier:

Hillary supporters believe in a diverse America; one where religion or skin color or sexual orientation or place of birth aren’t liabilities or deficiencies or moral defects. Her campaign was one of inclusion and connection and interdependency. It was about building bridges and breaking ceilings. It was about going high.

Trump supporters believe in a very selective America; one that is largely white and straight and Christian, and the voting verified this.Donald Trump has never made any assertions otherwise. He ran a campaign of fear and exclusion and isolation—and that’s the vision of the world those who voted for him have endorsed.

More virtue-signalling, more condescension, more insults, more lack of awareness.  They are doubling-down on the very things that cost them the election.

For another example, look at this:

Note there is no attempt to understand the opposition, to reflect on why their labelling everyone with whom they disagreed as a racist, sexist, homophobe, etc. didn’t bring them the electoral success they were so sure of.  Instead they’re just repeating what they said throughout the campaign, only now from a losing position.

Finally, via Tim Worstall, a reporter’s email:

“The Democratic Party must go through a reckoning. Donald Trump tapped into the profound economic anxiety that so many people feel deeply in their lives. Progressives warned repeatedly that Republicans could outflank Democrats on trade, jobs, Wall Street, and corporate greed — and they did. This race should not have been so close, and Democrats will lose in the future — over and over — if they don’t go through a serious ideological shift and follow Elizabeth Warren’s lead — fighting against the rigged economy in a truly authentic and real way.”

As Tim says: “The way forward for the Democrats is more Elizabeth Warren?  Jeebus”

When Labour got trounced by the Conservatives in the 2015 UK General Election the immediate reaction of Labour and their supporters was twofold:

1) Repeat the insults they had flung at the opposition all the way through the campaign period, only louder and with more swearing.

2) Complain that the brilliance of their message “hadn’t been heard” and hence they ought to be more radically opposed to the winning side.

The result was that the lunatic fringe of the British Left hijacked the Labour movement and took the party way out into the long grass, convinced that their views were mainstream.  In doing so they have all but guaranteed continuous Conservative rule until the party is taken back from the headcases or a new opposition party formed.

The lunatic fringe of the American Left appear to be making the same mistake by thinking that their views are mainstream, and if the moderate Democrats are not careful they could find their party is also captured by hardcore elements – the Bernie Sanders mob, crazed college students, mental feminists, etc. – and find themselves elbowed out into the political wilderness indefinitely.  Of course, such warnings have been issued before in relation to both Republicans and Democrats, but it appears to have happened for real in the UK and the political landscapes on both sides of the Atlantic are shifting in ways we wouldn’t have thought possible just a few years ago.

Much as though I’d laugh if the Democrat party did go down this route, I’m not sure a Republican party facing no serious opposition would be a good thing for anyone.

Poppies

Apparently FIFA is telling the English and Scottish FAs that the two sides cannot wear poppies when they play each other on 11th November.  Both FAs intend to defy the ban and FIFA is warning sanctions will follow.  For me it is a mystery as to why anybody thought to consult with FIFA in the first place: it is usually better to ask for forgiveness than permission or, even better, not even bother doing that.

Personally, I’d rather football and other sports teams didn’t wear the poppy.  I have nothing against people buying and wearing poppies, nor contributing to the Royal British Legion, nor do I think members of the public who wear one are making political statements.  But what I do find a bit annoying is its creeping ubiquity: every newsreader on British television starts wearing one from around 1st November, which is almost certainly something they are told to do.  In fact, pretty much everyone who appears on TV from celebrity chefs to football managers in that period is expected to wear a poppy, and it has got to the point they probably fear they’d be criticised if they don’t.  I’d prefer to see fewer poppies on television and be comforted by the fact that wearing one hasn’t become de facto compulsory, for if that is the case then it will have lost most of its meaning.  Do the English footballers even get a choice?

For example, when you look through the House of Commons you see almost every MP wearing one, even the backbenchers.  Do I believe these self-serving parasites give a stuff about war veterans?  No, I don’t.  For a lot of them wearing a poppy is about virtue-signalling and trying to fit in.

Take a look at what ANZAC day in Australia has become.  The New Australian (now retired) used to write about this, and somebody popped up in the comments to explain that it was slowly losing its significance as the original veterans died off, but then a politician sometime in the 1990s saw an opportunity to bash the patriotic drum by reviving it.  TNA’s personal take on it, and mine is the same, is that as non-Australians it is not really our place to disparage something that obviously means a lot to Aussies and Kiwis…but is turning up to a cenotaph at 7am in rugby kit and getting absolutely shitfaced really the best way to remember the dead?  Woe betide anyone in Australia who asks this question out loud, or frowns upon the crass commercialisation of the whole thing.

In short, I’d rather see the wearing of poppies remain the private decision of individuals rather than be co-opted by politicians, the media, and organisations such as the FA.  Wearing black armbands and the minute’s silence have lost all their former meaning now they have become official policy and barely a weekend goes by without a team mourning the loss of somebody or other.  I hope the poppy doesn’t go the same way.

Putin says what others won’t

Let’s compare two stories. The first is from India:

A woman in Kerala who was allegedly gang-raped by her husband’s friends wept as she went public with her story today and said she was forced to withdraw her complaint because of humiliation by the police. “Which one of them gave you the greatest pleasure?” she was allegedly asked by a police officer.

“Far more than rape, it was the police threats and humiliation that was unbearable,” the 32-year-old woman said in Thiruvananthapuram, speaking to reporters with her husband by her side, both their faces covered.

“Oh dear!” says I, an enlightened European.  “These brown folk in the developing world have some catching up to do if they hope to dine at the same table with us sophisticated Westerners!  But what do you expect from a society where the powerful classes treat the plebs with such contempt?”

The second story is from Austria:

An Iraqi refugee who raped a 10-year-old boy at a swimming pool has had his conviction overturned because a court didn’t prove he realised the boy was saying no.

The rapist, identified as Amir A, 20, violently sexually assaulted the boy in the changing room of Theresienbad pool in Austria claiming it was a ‘sexual emergency’ because he had not had sex for four months.

But an appeal court in the country accepted the defence lawyer’s claim that the lower court had not done enough to prove he knew the schoolboy was saying no and overturned the conviction.

The incident occurred in December 2015 as part of the integration process where he traveled with a 15-year-old helper and translator who was meant to be teaching him how to integrate into life in Vienna.

He seized his moment at the pool and dragged the boy into the changing rooms and locked the door before raping him.

The boy, known as Goran, required immediate medical treatment and has been suffering with post-traumatic stress disorder ever since.

If only India’s rape victims had access to the superior justice systems we enjoy in the West, eh?  Ours go to extraordinary lengths to ensure the victims are not humiliated after the event, oh yes.

Okay, let’s drop the sarcasm and get serious.  I concede that the defendant in the Austrian case will be retried and he is being held in custody having been found guilty of the lesser charge of sexual assault, so he’s not going to be walking free any time soon.  Or at least, we hope not.

But let’s think about this.  If the boy had consented, would it not have still been rape?  I thought the whole idea behind statutory rape was that minors were incapable of consent.  So why does the rape of a minor now hinge on whether said minor consented?  Obviously the law works differently in Austria.

Then we have the ludicrous claim that the defendant couldn’t be sure the boy was saying no.  On what fucking planet do these people live on?  This wasn’t a case of a drunk teenager going home with a guy she met in a club.  This was a grown man attacking a ten year old boy in a swimming pool changing room for fuck’s sake.  Are we to assume that Iraqis are so mentally retarded that they don’t know that this is wrong?

It seems to be that way, because the judges have said as much.  So if we are going to assume that Iraqis are unaware that raping ten year old boys in swimming pool changing rooms is a criminal act, why the fuck is Europe allowing millions of them to casually stroll across the borders and, in the case of Germany, actively welcome them?  The ruling of the judges in this case and the migrant policy in Europe is basically saying that people who don’t know that raping minors is wrong are welcome here.  This is insane.

I wrote before about my reluctantly defending Vladimir Putin.  Let’s call this reluctant praise:

Firstly, put aside the fact that Putin obviously has a nationalistic agenda here and is attempting to present this ruling as evidence that Russia has a superior culture, etc.

But the intent of the messenger doesn’t in itself mean the messenger is wrong.  Is Putin wrong when he says “It’s just hard to imagine what Europeans are doing…I don’t even know how to explain it”?

I wouldn’t go so far to agree that this is the result of an erosion of traditional national values in the sense that he means it, but there has been an erosion of values of some sort.  Would this have happened twenty years ago?  I think he is close to the mark when he says “Maybe they have a guilty conscience because of the refugee crisis?”  He might be referring to the wrecking of Iraq, I don’t know, but I do believe a lot of this madness stems from a collective guilt among the wet-European left over colonialism and the Holocaust which makes being accused of racism their biggest fear.

One can scarcely believe that fear of being branded racist would cause European elites to excuse child rape, but that seems to be where the evidence is pointing.  It’s not like this case in Austria is the only one: the systematic raping of schoolgirls in Rotherham was allowed to continue unchecked because various elites – whose own daughters were not at risk – were too scared of being called racist.  It was a national disgrace that the only person prepared to call attention to what was going on in Rotherham was the odious Nick Griffin in an interview with the BBC in 2004.  Naturally, he was arrested immediately afterwards for stirring up racial hatred (he was later cleared of all charges).

Similarly, it is an absolute disgrace that the only senior European politician who has any comment to make on refugees raping schoolboys (and others) is Vladimir Putin.  If European nations keep this up, we’re going to start electing our own versions of Putin, and much worse, before too long.

This won’t end well.

On Anti-Discrimination Laws

Tom Paine makes the following comment on his own blog:

[T]he pessimism of the Left — their bizarre, inhuman – nay anti-human, notion that, left unregulated, we would fall savagely upon each other like wild beasts…

We humans are far better than the Left believes.

The Left regarding humans as savage mutual predators is a similarly good predictor of how they will use the absolute state power they constantly advocate — ostensibly to protect us from ourselves.

I came across this yesterday while preparing to write a follow-up to this post on discrimination, and it serves as a good introduction to what I am about to say.

I am of the belief that private business owners ought to have the right to discriminate against people on any grounds they please.  The principle behind this belief is one whereby each individual has the right to choose with whom they associate, communicate, and do business.  Once laws are applied stating that the individual is compelled to do business with somebody they would otherwise prefer not to, then that right has been breached.  I believe the right to free association ought to trump somebody else’s right to access a service or product being provided by an ostensibly free individual.

Some people find that to be quite an extreme position, and perhaps it is.  But I would rather start from that extreme position and deal with any unpleasant consequences as and when they come up rather than take the position which prevails today whereby laws are passed based on hypothetical situations which could possibly arise.

For example, if there is a situation already existing whereby blacks, gays, or gingers cannot access goods and services in a town or village because every business has refused to deal with them and the reasons are quite obviously because of their minority status, then perhaps there is a case for government intervention.  Perhaps.  But the onus would be on the government and those wishing them to intervene to demonstrate that this is a serious and genuine problem which is causing unacceptable hardship to a substantial number of people.  I don’t know whether this situation has ever arisen before: perhaps it did in the American South before the Civil Rights movement, but we ought to remind ourselves that segregation between the races was enshrined in law.  Chalk up another victory to the political process, illiberal laws, and the tyranny of the majority.

However, the approach today is to assume that, in the absence of anti-discrimination laws, this situation would arise in every town and village across the land and thousands of blacks, gays, and gingers would find themselves unable to do their grocery shopping or stay in hotels.  This assumption rests on the belief that we are all closet racists, homophobes, and anti-gingers and hence the force of law is required to keep us all in check.

Only the people who support these laws, which is most people, never consider that their behaviour needs such restrictions applied.  Oh no, people who support anti-discrimination laws are, of course, as pure as the driven snow and treat everybody with the utmost fairness and respect.  And so do all their friends.  It is those mysterious “other” folk who are the racist knuckle-draggers who would bar their doors to anyone that didn’t look like the Milkybar Kid.

“Oh,” I say.  “Do you actually know people like this?  Can you name any?”

“Oh no,” they reply.  “Of course I don’t.  But you must be very naive to assume nobody thinks like this.”

And there we have it.  Laws must be brought in to curtail potential behaviour of unidentified individuals who might harbour the wrong thoughts.  It’s a pretty dim view of humanity, I must say.

Supporters of anti-discrimination laws often refer to the era in Britain where “No Blacks, No Dogs, No Irish” signs appeared in business premises up and down the nation, and they will usually link to a photo to prove it, such as this one:

In fact, that is the wrong term to use.  It is always this one.  Whenever the ubiquity of such signs comes up in an online discussion, the photo above is seemingly the only one which exists of what was supposedly a very common sight.  One would have thought there would be numerous examples of such prejudice, complete with the photographers’ names, if they commonplace.  A letter in The Guardian on the subject says this:

A much-reproduced photograph is held by the Irish Studies Centre of London Metropolitan University. It depicts a front window with handwritten signs saying “Bed & breakfast” and “No Irish, no blacks, no dogs”. The photograph emerged only in the late 1980s, and the university has conceded to me that it is of “somewhat uncertain” provenance. They have been unable to discover who took the picture, where or when. An old news clipping which I have presented to the university points to the image having been mocked up for an exhibition called “An Irish Experience” mounted at the now-defunct Roger Casement Irish Centre in Islington, London.

This dubious picture has long been cited by politicians, academics, even the Equality and Human Rights Commission, all of whom no doubt believe it is genuine. Many even claim to have seen such signs in the past, though what they may actually remember is the London Met picture endlessly recirculated, nowadays on the internet.

What depresses most is that some people wish that these signs were everywhere and that Britain really was this awful, racist society so they can justify passing illiberal laws now.  Similarly, they actually want situations of intolerance to arise so they can pass ever-more stringent laws forbidding individuals from doing as they please.

For my part, I take a more rosy view of my fellow citizens.  I think if all anti-discrimination laws in Britain were thrown in the bin tomorrow you would not find a single instance of any minority unable to secure access to goods or services anywhere.  Sure, you might find the odd B&B or shop who refused to serve them, but I think market forces would solve this problem in very short order in two ways: firstly a rival would post a big sign saying “Minorities Welcome Here” in their front window, and secondly ordinary people would decline to do their shopping in an establishment that was so intolerant.  For all the furor over the gay wedding cake it was never the case that the couple concerned could not find a baker anywhere who would do what they were asking.  They merely selected one who they thought likely to object and then punished them for having the wrong opinions.  This is not liberty, it is control.

And this is what it’s all about when it comes down to it: control.  Anti-discrimination laws have little to do with protecting minorities and everything to do with outlawing opinions that a vocal minority don’t wish people to hold.  The whole lot should be torn up and thrown in the bin and those supporting them told to jump in a lake.