Beige, taupe and navy blue for Malta's Gay Pride parade

Published: July 17, 2010 at 5:51pm

gay-pride

Today’s Gay Pride demo in Valletta must have been the drabbest in the world.

For a moment there, going on the clothes and general blend-into-the-background dullness, I thought I had come across a consciousness-raising ‘walk for Christ’ organised by the St Aloysius College sixth form and some organisation of do-gooders at the university.

I see people dressed like that and I want to run a mile in the opposite direction. The only message it gives out is, and in capital letters: I AM DULL AND BORING AND POSSIBLY ALSO NARROW-MINDED AND UNIMAGINATIVE.

That Gay Pride parade put me in mind of a school disco in the early 1980s, except that school discos in the early 1980s might have looked more like a Gay Pride parade should do because that was the heyday of Adam Ant, make-up for boys, and flamboyant ruffles and pirate outfits.

But I don’t recall anyone dressing like that. Instead, they dressed ‘up’ for parties exactly as those people dressed ‘up’ for the Gay Pride parade today. The way I remember it, to get people to wear the fashions of the times in 1981 you would have to call your party ‘fancy dress’. And then the boys might have worn a ruffle – making sure that you knew it was ironic – and the girls might have worn a bit of eyeliner.

With people like the participants in today’s parade, I always wonder how they pick their clothes and get dressed in the morning.

“Hmmmm, this beige T-shirt from a pack of three and these dull jeans, and if I’m lucky, nobody will look at me.” Or: “Navy blue shirt and black poly trousers – now I can really blend into the crowd.”

Jewellery? A pair of stud earrings and a fine chain with a tiny charm hanging off it – strictly girls only. The unfortunate purpose served by that rainbow of balloons was to throw into sharp contrast the utter dullness of the people walking behind it in a mass of beige, white, black, dark blue, grey, brown and eau-de-nil.

They looked so very, boringly, ordinary – but then I suppose that was the whole point of the exercise. “Look, I could have been you.”

Sure, feather-boas, Brazilian head-dresses and sequinned thongs rub the average person entirely the wrong way and make out that gay people are just about sex.

But there’s no need to go to the other extreme, with demonstrating lesbians looking like nuns in mufti and the men looking like their mother picked their clothes on the basis of what a nice boy should wear if he’s going to find himself a nice girl.

I suppose it’s par for the course in Malta when even homosexuals have no style at all.




59 Comments Comment

  1. WhoamI? says:

    Wrong. on all counts unfortunately. You just don’t get it. Or do you?

    Just one, just one you got right in all of this. “Look, I could have been you.”

  2. Leonard says:

    Jimi was straight as an arrow but put on the colours.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NnaOGvf5k8U

  3. Yanika says:

    I do think you are a bit too criticizing of the Maltese Daphne. Relax a bit about the fashion, please!

    [Daphne – I’m right, though, aren’t I? You can tell a lot about a place by the way its people choose to dress.]

    • WhoamI? says:

      OK, so who in your opinion would we need to look up to as role models in the fashion sense? Could you name a couple of men and women?

      [Daphne – I’m not talking about fashion. I’m talking about style, which is something completely different. The Maltese interpretation of style is the Italian interpretation: conservative elegance (deeply uninteresting). But real style is something quirky, personal and highly individual – the very thing Maltese people are terrified of. The current leaders are the Scandinavians. And I love wacky London style.]

  4. Edward Caruana Galizia says:

    “I suppose it’s par for the course in Malta when even homosexuals have no style at all”

    I beg to differ. I have plenty of style!

    I would like to make this small point.

    I didn’t make it to the pride parade because I was nursing an I-am-back-for-summer hangover and also because I don’t even go to the London pride unless I am dragged by my friends.

    I don’t go to London pride because I don’t see how it is relevant in such an open-minded community. They have had hurdles to overcome in the past, but that’s all over now for them for the most part.

    But the message is still relevant to Malta. Malta is NOT London, Manchester, Paris or any other “out-and-proud” place. It is one where the closet is as big as anything and should be busted open. Malta needs Gay Pride!

    With this in mind one would think that therefore the Malta Pride would be one big event! However it doesn’t have the chance to be. Why? Because there isn’t the budget.

    Not to mention that fact that all those who are involved in lobbying for gay rights do it in their spare time and technically juggling two or more jobs to make ends meet.

    It would be very selfish of me to demand that these people champion gay rights while they work a nine to five, put up with the running costs of their lives and fork out the cash to spend on a huge event like gay pride not to mention invest enough time and energy to make it all happen…..all at the same time! They are not superhuman.

    Therefore I find it unfair that you speak about the whole thing in such a way. It may not have been the massive street-party it is in other countries, but those who went did put themselves out there regardless of what they were or were not wearing. It was brave of them, not just because they ran a small risk of being the target of much abuse and homophobia but also because they will, without a doubt, have to put up with people thinking they were idiots for going.

    It is almost as if they turned up to the uncool party when the cool people were somewhere else. This is not the case. Gay Pride in Malta, regardless of how successful it is when it comes to the actual event, is important, and one day it will be the event it needs to be. That day may not have been today ( I don’t know because I wasn’t there). But it has to start from somewhere.

    Well done to all who organized it and good on you to those who went!

    • Andrea Muscat says:

      Are you for real?

      Maybe I’m taking what you said the wrong way but:

      If you cared so much about this fight for equal rights, couldn’t you have left your hangover for another day, say today? Is that what you call style?

      I’m utterly shocked. I mean, civil partnerships were introduced in the UK in 2005, 38 years after homosexuality was decreminalised there. People like Peter Tatchell did enormous sacrifices to achieve that right. (Once he said that when he goes out he has just enough money to buy 2 drinks).He and other gay men like Ian McKellen campaigned tirelessly for years!

      And here you are saying you got so drunk right on Pride’s Eve. It makes me laugh without even wanting to!

      • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

        Yes, you are taking everything I said the wrong way. Well done.

        Let me clarify.

        I am back in Malta on holiday. HOLIDAY. I haven’t seen my friends in a long time and I wanted to meet them. Then I overslept. I can’t believe I am explaining myself. Last night I went to the Pride Party I was told about. So I did support you guys.

        I do not live in Malta anymore. I chose to leave for good because I don’t want to live in a country like Malta that does not protect my rights nor does it give me much opportunity work-wise. So Malta is not my problem anymore.

        I ALWAYS support people here. Sadly none of them supported me in the past. I found myself in a bit of a pickle a few months ago which I did not instigate at all, and was totally let down by people simply because I am not of the same political beliefs. However I still supported the Gay Pride Parade.

        I am not some public figure who needs to make an appearance at events. I am just a member of the public. Stop talking to me like I am anything else, because I am not. I am not a lawyer, nor am I a politician.

        Also, don’t talk to me like I do nothing for a country that I don’t even live in anymore. In fact, the pickle I found myself in a few months ago was caused because of my contributions on articles.

        You stood up with 200+ other people and marched the streets. I stood up on my own, abandoned by anyone who could have helped me, and still took everything on the chin. So why don’t you calm down for a few seconds and re-think your wording.

      • Andrea Muscat says:

        I know it’s too little, too late, but is it OK if I apologised? With all my heart?

        I only realised how harsh and crazy I sounded once I clicked the red button hereunder. I thought, “Maybe Friday was his boyfriend’s birthday, you s**t, just like it was yours!”

        And I know you’ve got style. I can still remember how one theatre critic described your performance in Mercury Fur as “surprisingly subtle”. Those were the exact words, weren’t they?

        So I’m sorry for putting such a stupid damper on your holiday.

      • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

        Chill, man. No need to apologize.

        I read some of the comments beneath the timesofmalta.com article and was so shocked at the rubbish that I almost threw my laptop at the wall in an imaginary argument with the idiots.

        I guess reading those comments is upsetting and they can work up even the calmest of people. The key is to laugh at them. They hate it when you laugh at them.

        The only damper on my holidays is the fact that I have to work to make money to get me through my final year at Uni in the UK.

    • ciccio2010 says:

      Edward, never mind style and hang-overs.

      The term “gay rights” means everything or nothing to the man in the street. It may actually be counter-productive to use such generic terms. After all, Malta has anti-discrimination laws, gays are allowed to protest, and so forth.

      I think those rights just need to be spelled out specifically, e.g. marriage, or civil partnerships, etc.

      Now, as to marriage vs. civil partnerships. My suggestion is that, considering the sensitivity of the subject of marriage to the Maltese people (see the debate on divorce), it is better to argue for a law on civil partnerships.

      If you really want it to be Rights Now, don’t you think the time is ripe to persuade an MP to bring before the House a private member’s bill on, say, civil partnerships?

      • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

        Actually you are wrong about one thing. There are not Gay Rights in Malta. There are barely any anti discrimination laws in Malta. There are laws that do help out should you ever be discriminated against but it sends a stronger message to the public if the government actually says that such behaviour and attitudes are not welcome.

      • ciccio2010 says:

        So Edward, let us get to the substance of it. What rights laws are you suggesting? What specific laws, say from the UK, US or elsewhere are you suggesting Malta needs to have?

        Whereas I do not wish to sound rhetoric, remember that many Maltese people still need to be EDUCATED about any argument that is brought forward by liberals or progressives. Very often, one needs to show in black on white, bend backwards and forwards (and sideways).

        Can the relevant NGO put it all together and publish a draft of those bills for Malta? Why leave it to the politicians and the MPs, who seem to have no interest in LEADING?

      • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

        I am so incredibly happy someone has ACTUALLY asked the question. THE question. Why is the “Gay Rights Movement” in such a seemingly amateur state?

        I am not directly involved in the Gay Rights Movement (I would have wanted to be but life has taken me elsewhere), so answering that is going to be very difficult. Let me just say that if we do not have any sexuality clause in certain laws (not sure which ones those would be because I’m not a lawyer but I think you catch my drift) then there should be, for example, gays in the military.

        [Daphne – Edward, a word of advice. If you are going to argue for gay rights in Malta, then find out what those rights are and get the names and numbers of the laws which you think need changing. Otherwise, you’re undermined at the outset. You care so deeply and yet you can’t be bothered to find out because you’re ‘not a lawyer’? Do you have to be a doctor to know that antibiotics work against bacteria? At least get to grips with some of the legal principles. In Malta, there is no ban in the law against gays in the military (ah, but there was a ban on women). Therefore homosexuals can join the military, and they do. While Maltese soldiery tends to be not at all attractive to gay men, it is very attractive to some gay women. The local warden corps appears to have the same appeal. It is BANS which are made specific in the law, and not inclusion. Therefore, while you might have a clause that specifies homosexuality as grounds for exclusion, you will never have a clause that says ‘Oh, and by the way, gays are allowed to join too.’]

        However this could easily fall under the need to have laws sorted out and brushed up as there aren’t even proper anti-racism laws either.

        [Daphne – Actually, there are. The ban on discrimination against others on grounds of race and religion is enshrined in our constitution (but gender wasn’t). The peculiar situation in Malta was that, while you were not permitted to discriminate against a black person or a Muslim, you were perfectly entitled to discriminate against a woman.]

        It’s not enough to just say “Oh but we don’t discriminate so we don’t need them” as many people seem to insist. Apart from the fact that that is an unbelievably unrealistic view of Maltese society, people are generally tired of living according to laws that don’t even exist, and pretend they do, and then when they are needed the question of whether or not you can stand up for yourself relies solely on who you know and who is on your side and NOT the law.

        [Daphne – I think you are confusing discrimination with malice and suspicion. When people manifest negative attitudes about homosexuality in conversation, that’s not discrimination. Discrimination would be homosexuals barred entry to certain clubs, notices saying ‘homosexuals need not apply’, not getting the job because you’re gay, being denied service because you’re gay, being denied hospital treatment because you’re gay, not being allowed to open a bank account because you’re gay, that kind of thing.]

        I agree with your second bit. There needs to be a mass education on the matter. In fact I have always believed that, so as to not be selfish, education to fight homophobia and racism should be launched as one big package. The whole Liberal movement in Malta should be one big package, a sort of revamp of the entire country that so far has done nothing but fight off the opposition and NOT created the country.

        I’m not just talking about PSE lessons in schools that talk about such topics. I was recently informed that some sort of education on homosexuality is available in schools, although I am not sure what the syllabus says and if all schools follow it. I’m talking seminars and gatherings in every parish, parish priest included, given by a homosexual, where the people can meet one (for the first time in some cases I suspect) and see that we are normal.

        [Daphne – I don’t agree at all, Edward. This is a throwback to the days when captive Native Americans were paraded in London so that people could see their essential humanity, or when ‘negroes’ gave this exact same sort of public talk in the hope that listeners, who thought themselves very daring, would say ‘Oh my goodness, they would be quite as we are if it were not for the colour’. You don’t prove normality by putting yourself up like that. There is nothing to prove about normality.]

        I’m talking about putting an end to heated debate and angry and hurtful comments and articles in the papers and their websites, and finally “come out” and tell people what they so far do not know.

        As for the relevant NGO. They are all very kindly doing this in their spare time. They have jobs, they have bills they have so many other commitments that it would be very unrealistic to force them to do any more than what they can do and are doing at the moment.

        Maybe the government should give a helping hand, after all it is a group that is trying to fight for equality and not an NGO taking students on exchange programs. I tip my hat to those at MGRM since they are very patient and very dedicated. If what they do is not enough it is not their fault, it is just how things are at the moment. Things, however, do change. But until then I think it is unfair to talk about them like they are all highflying lawyers and lobbyists who’s life and nine-to-five is Gay Rights. They do all this in their spare time. Give them a break.

      • ciccio2010 says:

        Edward, as you say, it is possible that the gay activism in Malta is not organised, but probably this is like anything else in Malta, e.g. the movement in favour of the environment (how many NGOs there?), divorce (see the apparent confusion in the PN, and the fear in the PL), and, at least up to some time ago, women’s rights.

        This is because Malta lacks organisation in many areas, for many reasons.

        But let me be constructive. What is required, in my view, is a National Commission on the subject of equality, like we now have for the disabled, for mental health and for the family. In fact, I also think that we now need a National Commission on Divorce, but leave that aside.

        There is a National Commission for the Promotion of Equality (NCPE) (www.equality.gov.mt), but this is set up under a law, passed in 2003 (just 7 years ago), called Equality for Men and Women Act (Chapter 456). The Act deals with “discrimination based on sex” and deals with “man” and “woman” but never with sexual orientation (in fact, that term does not feature anywhere in that law).

        In my view, therefore, this is only about gender discrimination. And it seems, from the Commission’s website, that they deal mainly with gender equality and sexual harassment. So I think you are right – Malta has no anti-discrimination law on gay rights.

        [Daphne – Oh for heaven’s sake. This is so TIRESOME. Homosexuals are not the third and fourth sex. They are men and women. The Equality for Men and Women Act deals with homosexuals too – because they are men and women. That piece of legislation had to be enacted to OVER-RIDE AND OVER-RULE the discrimination against women that was embedded throughout the Civil Code and, accordingly, every part of society and the economy. Our Civil Code had, and still does not have, any similarly embedded legislation that makes homosexuals less than heterosexuals – so, unlike with gender, there is no legislation to repeal, rescind, over-ride and over-rule. Homosexuals, as long as they were men, could always do whatever the hell they liked. Homosexual men had the vote when women didn’t, for a start. How do you like that? Homosexual women couldn’t do what they liked, but it wasn’t because they were homosexual. It was because they were women.]

        In contrast, the UK has the Equality Act 2010, which consolidates previous laws, including an earlier Equality Act of 2006. The new law comes into full force in October 2010. Now this law deals with equality on the basis of sexual orientation as well as gender, race etc. In fact, the law deals with equality of PERSONS, not equality of MEN and WOMEN.

        [Daphne – Presumably because there are persons who are not men and women? Or because homosexuals are persons but not men and women?]

        The Equality Act of 2006 created the Equality and Human Rights Commission (http://www.equalityhumanrights.com/), which remains with the new law. That name says it all, because it puts equality with, and in the context of, human rights.

        What I found most interesting is that the 2010 law covers the “protected characteristics” of a person, namely (presumably in alphabetical order): age; disability; gender reassignment; marriage and civil partnership; pregnancy and maternity; race; religion or belief; sex; and sexual orientation.

        Now, maybe someone more familiar with the topic may confirm my understanding above, or provide the necessary corrections.
        I think that the above is a better clarification on the subject of equality in “Rights” as in “Rights Now.”

        But I would have expected the MGRM to clarify on this. And by the way, I had never heard that term “gender reassignment” used in the UK law before.

        This said, rights must exist beyond legislation. I understand that the NCPE is soon launching a campaign on this – even if I cannot tell if it is about gender or equality in general.

      • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

        Daphne, I have not taken it upon myself to fight for gay rights. So all I know is, it is wrong to discriminate. It is those who are fighting for equality that know all the laws. But they do everything when they have the time because they also have bills to pay.

        [Daphne – That’s no excuse, Edward. If you are going to speak in public about these matters, then you must speak knowledgeably or not speak at all. Talking about ‘rights’ and ‘discrimination’ without being specific lays you open to the accusation of not knowing what you are talking about. You’ve lost any argument before you even begin. This is not criticism, just advice.]

        There may not be any laws that ban homosexuals, but there are no laws that stop people from banning them for their own reasons. In other words, what laws are there to punish someone for discriminating?

        [Daphne – What can I say: welcome to the real world. Women have been up against this for aeons and are still up against it today in Malta. Discrimination has to be proved, but it is impossible to prove unless somebody puts up a sign saying ‘No women’ or ‘No homosexuals’. I honestly don’t know why homosexual men think that they’re worse off than women of all sexual inclinations. Unless you’re planning to walk into a job interview announcing that you’re gay, you’re sorted because interviewers are not permitted to ask. But women can’t exactly be mistaken for anything else. The laws were changed some years ago to make it illegal for an employer to advertise gender-specific recruitment. I argued at the time, and I continue to think the same way, that this did more harm than good, and was just pointless. People will always employ who they want to, and because it is their business (literally) they are entirely within their rights to do so. So what we have had over the years is lots of people applying for jobs that they haven’t a chance at the outset of getting. They might be interviewed for form’s sake – more waste of time – but that’s it. The frustration this causes is enormous. But that’s life. ]

        There is no law banning someone from the military, but what law is there to protect a homosexual from a recruiter who does not want him/her there so makes life harder just to get rid of them.

        [Daphne – Do homosexuals ordinarily go into military recruitment interviews (or any other interviews, for that matter), announcing: “Hi, I’m Tom and I’m gay’? I thought not. So I can’t see where the problem is. Interviewers are not allowed to ask the question. If a man is blatantly effeminate, then he is obviously not at all suitable for soldiery, and shouldn’t shout ‘discrimination’ if he gets turned down. He will be turned down for being effeminate and not for being gay – not that anyone of that nature is ever going to be queuing up for the thrill of long, freezing marches through mud. Obviously gay (butch) women, on the other hand, are snapped up by the military, which is obliged to recruit women but doesn’t really want them for roughly the same reasons it doesn’t want effeminate men.]

        And let’s not forget, bullying someone and intimidating them because of their sexuality should be illegal.

        [Daphne – Edward, bullying and intimidation are illegal, full-stop, for whatever reason and whoever the person is.]

        But you always run the very high risk in Malta where the employer would say, “It is wrong but I understand them” – not the homosexual but the bully.

        Or ” Well mhux you let people know you’re gay. Now you have to put up with all this”.

        That is what happens in this country when someone gets bashed about due to their sexuality. They are told by the people around them that it is their fault for letting it be known.

        In other words, yes it s wrong to discriminate against gay people, but what do you expect. That is what we are faced with. Some even go as far as to make homosexuals feel bad about complaining about it all, and even ridicule them for even thinking that something can be done.

        [Daphne – Well, Edward, what can I say? If you find it so hard to put up with all that, thank your lucky stars that you weren’t born a woman in Malta.]

        There should be laws in place that go against that and send a clear message to people that, no it is not our duty to remain in the closet, it is not our job to be silent and live in the shadows and if people have a problem with our sexuality then it is as bad as having a problem with someone’s gender.

        This is what needs to be fixed in Malta. Yes – I believe that the correct legislation would make a difference, like it makes a difference with women today.

        [Daphne – It doesn’t make a difference. Not at all. Misogyny is alive and well. There are very few women in public life, and most women drop out of the job market in their late 20s and never reenter it. Men still regard themselves as being above household tasks which do not feature a tool-box, and almost all the men I know – very few exceptions – regard bringing in the laundry as a special favour to their wives, even if the only things in the pile that belong to their wife are two pairs of knickers. The prime minister and the archbishop think that divorce will leave women vulnerable and exposed. They don’t seem to understand that most break-ups are initiated by women, and that when divorce is introduced, women will be first in the queue. Among my own circle of friends and acquaintances, where marital breakdown is rampant, in every case the women was the one who took the decision because she had had enough. Most people commenting about divorce beneath other posts seem to think that marriages break down when the people in them fall out of love. Wrong, wrong and wrong again. They break down because the average man is naturally inclined to boorishness, fights it by wearing a veneer of sophisticated civilisation for some years, then steadily deteriorates when he thinks he is ‘safe’ in marriage. And then one day, a pair of boxer shorts or a rude word too many breaks the camel’s back. ]

        It doesn’t stop all people from discriminating against women, but it certainly helps to foster gender equality in Malta, and gives you the last laugh because the law is on your side.

        [Daphne – That’s what you think. Men have discovered all kinds of interesting ways to hide money from their wives or to hive it off from the community of estates. So you ask: why don’t women do the same thing? Simple: women are not inclined to that kind of behaviour. If they feel the need to hide money from their spouse, then they will know the time has come to leave him. They will not hide money from him while continuing to live with him.]

        Yes, many people think that homosexuals have an agenda. Don’t really know what that agenda is but that’s what they say to us. It’s as if they are convinced that we are out to turn the world gay.

        Laughable but that’s what it feels like. People only change their minds when they meet someone who is gay. Then gay people are no longer some distant myth but a real person in front of them. Showing the Maltese, once a year, that there are gay people, and many of us, in Malta might help for the same reasons.

        Gay Pride in London, and in fact in a lot of other cities, is not just about being very gay, despite the elaborate costumes. In the parade you also see floats each with members of a specific part of society. There is a float belonging to the homosexuals who work in the NHS, TFL, St John’s Ambulance, police, military (and there were more men than women when I went), BA, etc…. showing that actually there is a gay everything and that gay people don’t just hang out in dark alleys but have real lives. It does make a difference.

        Conservatives and the Roman Catholic Church like to project a horrible image of homosexuals all the time. This is the main hurdle. Dispelling rumours is tough, and I do not know any other way other than face to face.

        Both women and homosexuals have had to suffer under the laws of heterosexual men. Women have had bans removed and so have homosexuals. But women also have protection from the law.

        [Daphne – No, we don’t have protection from the law. We have equal status to men at law. The two are different. The law cannot protect women from misogyny, from husbands who make a scene if asked to perform a simple task, from husbands/partners who refuse to ‘allow’ them to work and who then say, when told ‘Well, try stopping me’, that they will get no help or support with the house or the children. There are no laws to protect women from being paupers in their own marriage while raising children, given hand-outs of meagre pocket-money (if at all; I knew some women – of my socio-economic background – who were given nothing at all) as though they were children themselves. A husband’s obligation at law (and a wife’s, thanks to our equal status law) is to keep a non-working spouse fed and clothed, and that’s about it. Define food. Define clothing. Define life as a dog in a kennel. And which woman, if she wants her marriage to survive and her children to live undisturbed by polemics, is going to sue her own husband for more money?]

        It is not enough to just lift a ban. You also have to have the protection of the law, which is not guaranteed if you are a minority. That is why women also have laws that protect. What good would lifting a ban be if men were still allowed to be sexist?

        [Daphne – Explain to me how you can prevent a man from being sexist if that is what he is. You can prevent him from making sexist comments in the newspapers, but then he’ll go right ahead and be sexist whenever and wherever else he pleases – usually, in my experience, at supper parties to be purposely aggravating. I have never been at a supper party where homosexuals in general were run down in the presence of homosexual guests – everyone would be horrified, were it to happen. But I have been to countless (and endless) such parties where the men, in their cups or not, believe that good conversation to accompany the pudding must unfailingly involve the disparagement of women. ]

        What good is this so-called equality in Malta when there are no laws that protect it?

        It’s not just about equality but ensuring that equality. Malice leads to discrimination, at work, in the neighbourhood, at school etc. If a woman encounters it then there are laws that protect her. Homosexuals are told by all around them “well, it’s not right, but we told you to remain silent so now deal with it”.

        [Daphne – Funny, but people have always told me the same thing, because apparently (I hadn’t known about this), Maltese women in Malta are meant to be seen (preferably modestly dressed) but not heard. They are above all not supposed to have opinions, but if they must have opinions, then they should be daft ones, so that a point may be proved: “Look, that is the sort of opinion a woman has.”]

        Also, there is the issue of gay marriage and gay adoption. Both have been shown to be no different to the heterosexual counterpart by countless studies by countless professors, and yet we are not allowed the freedom. Why?

        I don’t know but the story of Adam and Eve has something to do with it since they were such a fantastic model of a family to follow.

      • ciccio2010 says:

        Daphne, I do not wish to be tiresome, but this discussion is lively and quite frankly I am looking into these arguments for the first time. I also admit that legal technicalities can be boring.

        [Daphne – I wasn’t saying YOU are tiresome. What IS tiresome is the subtext: that homosexuals are a separate sex. They are men and women, like everyone else. Nobody gives a monkey’s what they do in bed – certainly not the law. Gender is the only thing that counts at law, which is why homosexual men were fully enfranchised persons when women were chattels.]

        Whereas I agree with your point that gays or lesbians are (let me say generally in case I am missing something) men or women, this is only a physical issue (but which may imply some social consequences that may give rise to sexual discrimination, e.g. the traditional reason that women bear children and take leave from work to look after those children).

        But, if two men apply for a job, and one is discriminated against because he is a gay person and is consequently not employed, the employer can argue that he did not commit any sexual discrimination, because both applicants were men and a man was engaged. Hence, no breach of the Equality for Men and Women Act.

        [Daphne – You cannot prove discrimination in recruitment, not even between men and women, just as you can’t force a private company to employ somebody against their wishes. If they prefer the other person, for whatever reason, that’s their prerogative. The only thing the law does is force employers to conceal their preferences. All they’ll say is that the other person did better in the interview, and who’s to argue with that. You are looking into these things for the first time because you’re a man, and men in Malta remain blissfully unaware of just how blessed their state has been from birth. Your rights are assumed, and you have always been able to take everything for granted. I am not looking into them for the first time. I have lived with them all my life, as a woman born in Malta in the 1960s. Women of my age lived the first chunk of their lives in a position of legal, social and generally assumed inferiority to men. Up to 1993 – that’s right, 1993 – a woman could retain her rights only by remaining unmarried. The right to marry, in a supreme act of irony, became the right by which Maltese women LOST their basic rights. As for discrimination in the job market, don’t get me started. The last survey – last week? the week before? – showed that women in Malta still earn far less than men for the same work and the same job.]

        However, the issue here would be that the gay person was not engaged not because of a gender issue, but because of a separate personal characteristic, namely sexual orientation. That is why I think it is important to give importance to the separation of gender from sexual orientation and to address them both in equality laws (with other characteristics, e.g. race, religion etc.).

        [Daphne – All pointless. You might as well legislate to stop discrimination against tall people, short people, fat people, thin people, old people, young people, people with warts, people without warts…The only real historical discrimination in Europe has been men over women, whites over blacks and Christians over Muslims/Jews (and in Britain, against Catholics). Lesbians were discriminated against because they were women and not because they were lesbians, and homosexual men were not discriminated against because they were men. They got into trouble with the law only if they flaunted a relationship that included sodomy. But then heterosexual adulterers got into the same sort of trouble with the law – that was then, this is now. Homosexuals are allowed to have sex and so are adulterers. Nobody gets prosecuted or goes to jail for doing it. What exactly do homosexuals want except for marriage? I haven’t got a clue and nobody seems able to answer my question.]

        The Equality for Men and Women Act deals with gender equality, not sexual orientation equality. Sexual orientation exists within the same gender, male or female.

        [Daphne – For the millionth time, Maltese law is not concerned with sexuality. It does not give a fig for sexuality, which is precisely as it should be. It is concerned with gender. Malta does not need to legislate to end a situation of discrimination against homosexuals FOR THE SIMPLE REASON THAT THERE ISN’T, AND NEVER WAS, DISCRIMINATION AGAINST HOMOSEXUALS IN THE LAWS OF THE LAND. ON THE OTHER HAND, DISCRIMINATION AGAINST WOMEN WAS EMBEDDED IN OUR LEGAL SYSTEM AND OUR CONSTITUTION UNTIL RECENTLY. What you might have in mind is something different altogether: a law which makes it illegal for people to put up signs outside clubs saying ‘No gays’ or to advertise situations that are vacant with the rejoinder that no gays need apply. Nobody does that anyway. They wouldn’t, would they.]

        Now I have since done some more research on this in Malta, and in fairness to them, MGRM did raise this subject already in 2008, ahead of the general elections. Here are their minutes from meetings with the political parties.
        http://www.maltagayrights.net/politicalfront

        As for the PN promise no. 235 referred to by the MGRM above, here it is below. It is vague on the one hand, but quite comprehensive on the other, and it is in line with my earlier thoughts. Where it may be limited is in its reference to the work place. Discrimination can take place anywhere.

        “235. Il-Kummissjoni Nazzjonali dwar il-Promozzjoni ta’ l-Ugwaljanza tinghata responsabbiltà li tara li ma jkun hemm l-ebda tip ta’ diskriminazzjoni fuq il-post tax-xoghol u li thares kontra kull tip ta’ diskriminazzjoni fejn dan s’issa mhux kopert b’mod effettiv.”
        So now it is a matter for MGRM to hold the PN to account to deliver on this promise.

        [Daphne – Come again? What sort of discrimination in the workplace would this be? That homosexuals get 30 minutes for lunch while heterosexuals get an hour? Think about it: there CAN BE NO discrimination against homosexuals in the workplace. The potential for discrimination lies in the gender, not sexuality – like with the infamous factory case a couple of years ago in which women employees were made to notify their manager when they were menstruating. The last time I looked, lesbians menstruated too, but gay men did not.]

      • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

        Cicio2010: I agree with you 110%

      • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

        Daphne I would have to disagree with you. Not all gay men are whimpy and girly. There are plenty of butch masculine gay men. Plus it is unfair to say that just because a man may be effeminate then they are automatically going to be rejected by the army for that reason.

        [Daphne – Edward, I didn’t write that all gay men are effeminate. I wrote that people do not walk into army recruitment interviews saying ‘Hi, I’m gay’ and that interviewers are not permitted to ask – therefore this is the only way it could be obvious, if the man is effeminate. Are effeminate men likely to want to join the army? I’d think not. But let’s say an effeminate man decides to interview for a position as a new recruit. Is he going to be turned down because he is gay or because he is psychologically and physically unsuitable? Meanwhile, the other gay man in the queue, the one who is not effeminate, is judged entirely suitable. And off we go. If we could stop being so touchy about this subject, we would be able to see the hilarity in that scene from Bruno, where Sacha Baron Cohen’s character joins the military. I laughed so much I had to be scraped off the floor.]

        The army needs people who are going to do the job. A male recruit who is gay may be effeminate at first, but the training is there to make a soldier out of them. It might not change how they are out of uniform, but it certainly would change how they are when working.

        [Daphne – Hardly. Soldiers fall into a very definite type, and the dominant characteristic is the willingness to suppress one’s individuality for the sake of the whole. Soldiers are trained to operate like machines, but there must be the raw psychological material to start with. The defining characteristic of effeminate homosexual men is their individuality and the need to nurture that. I can understand that entirely: wearing a grim uniform and being treated like a number/cog in the wheel on a daily basis would kill me.]

        There are gay men in every butch occupation. Football players, Rugby players, machanics, etc. They are not effeminate. In fact you probably wouldn’t even notice they were gay. But this attitude of “all gay men are effeminate” makes life harder for those who are in traditionally masculine jobs to come out.

        [Daphne – I think I’ve known that for about 30 years now. But the reason some people might think all gay men are effeminate (just as they think all lesbians are butch and masculine) is because those are the ones who can’t hide it, who are obvious. If all the rest creep around in the closet, what do you expect? The poster-boy for gaydom becomes the screaming queen hairdresser and the poster-girl the butch dyke warden slapping her ticket on your windscreen.]

        However I don’t blame you for making that assumption. Many gay men are turned away from certain jobs or groups because the people running the show think that it s not the place for a gay man and want to keep it a manly place. (You think that is not discrimination? ) So all that is left for gay men is to go into a field that accepts them. That is why most gay men end up in stereotypically “gay men” jobs.

        [Daphne – I’m afraid you’re wrong there. There are gay men in almost every organisation I have contact with in my working life, from the political parties to company offices. Nobody cares anymore. The gay lobby is out of step with reality. The fear is in themselves. You can’t hide homosexuality anyway. People can work it out. Fond mothers might believe that their son just hasn’t met the right girl, but everyone else knows what to think about men in their 30s and 40s who show no interest in women, or who go out on occasional ‘dates’ while keeping the woman at arm’s length.]

        You have often said that people should get over the whole issue of sexuality and not make a big deal of it when a gay man or woman is successful in a field that is not known to be accepting of homosexuals. In fact I believe you have at times directed that at gay people themselves.

        I have always thought this was wrong because a gay man can be a great footballer, soldier, policeman, etc, and still be gay and yet the norm is to send them packing when they try to enter such a field because they are not manly enough.

        Therefore, a gay man in, say, rugby is a big deal, because it shows that actually there are plenty of gay men who are just as butch as straight men are, and in fact, their sexuality does not make them any worse at their job.

        As far as I know an army recruiter is looking for someone who wants to do the job and wants to do the training. Their sexuality, or them being effeminate, has little or nothing to do with it. At least this is the case in countries like the UK.

        So I fail to see your point.

        [Daphne – You fail to see it because you don’t understand that the new rules have forced the military to take on people they don’t really want and who are entirely unsuitable, like women for instance. While women soldiers and sailors cannot be discriminated against, the reality is that men end up being discriminated against because when the first women soldiers who happened to be mothers were blown up on the front line, the public outcry was enormous. There is something primeval which makes people react with horror at the thought of sending young mothers to fight on the frontline. I think our instinctive reaction against this is correct, but equality is equality and you can’t have partial equality. The military had fewer problems when it was permitted to recruit only the people it wanted to recruit: tough young men mentally suited to regimentation. But nobody is allowed to say that this is a problem.]

        Plus, you just proved me right. Oh look here s a gay man who is too effeminate for this so we re sending him on his way because he is not manly enough.

        [Daphne – Edward, ‘manliness’ is an essential requirement in the army, if by manliness you mean physical toughness and psychological suitability for an arduous life. Even women recruits are required to be ‘manly’. So if an effeminate man is deemed unsuitable for army training, then it’s precisely because he doesn’t meet one of th4e essential requirements, and not because he likes to sleep with other men. The military is there to serve a purpose, and not for people to act out their Village People fantasies. Lesbians are not deemed unsuitable for recruitment on the grounds that they’re butch and manly. So what does that tell you? That homosexuality isn’t the issue here.]

        That happens, not just in the army, but also in many fields. Who cares how effeminate you are?

        [Daphne – An army recruitment officer for one. ‘This one isn’t going to struggle through a tunnel with muddy water up to his eyes in freezing weather with a 30kg pack on his back,’ he’ll think to himself. And he’ll be right. An army recruitment officer would say the same thing about me, and I wouldn’t go out complaining that he turned me down because I’m a woman. I’d say his assessment was spot on.]

        So long as you do the job well enough then there should be no problem. But no! Businesses, employers, and organizations would not want to have an employee who behaves “like that” because they do not want to be associated with that kind of thing.

        They do not deem it appropriate behaviour. No, I am not talking about a man walking into work wearing a pink bikini and heels. But even just the thought of an employee or member of an organization showing that they are gay puts employers off, not just because they are worried about their customers being put off by it, but because they are worried that it will threaten the masculine environment they enjoy.

        [Daphne – Wrong, wrong and wrong again. Nobody cares. Believe me. Nobody does. The difference between you and me is that I actually work here. I know what I’m talking about.]

        Yes, I know women are also pushed into fields that the straight men want them to be in. So you know what I am talking about. The difference is when you and other women voice your objection you are listened to. In fact there are also many songs empowering women, many female icons whose legacy is enshrined in history and celebrated.

        When homosexuals voice their objection they are told to shut up and stop making an issue out of it.

        [Daphne – The people who tell homosexuals to shut up and stop making an issue of it are right, I’m afraid. Homosexuals are NOT discriminated against and do pretty much as they please. Nobody cares. It is all in the mind, really. People worry about coming out of the closet in the same way that they do about leaving their husband/wife. Maaaaaaa! What will people think? The reality is that beyond the initial one week of gossip, nobody cares. Everyone is too busy with his or her own life to care about anyone else. X is gay? So frigging what.]

        Any work of art that empowers homosexuals is seen as dangerous by many since it “promotes” homosexuality, and if a historical figure is shown to have been gay it is treated as slander. And what’s more the conservatives go around saying “ See they are out to turn everyone gay and bring civilization to an end- we must stop it” . How oppressive is that?

        [Daphne – Oh come on. For centuries women were burned at the stake or drowned as witches, and we’re not still going on about it. I mean, who cares, really. Just live your life and stop bothering about what people say about paintings that ‘promote’ homosexuality.]

    • Andrea Muscat says:

      That’s what I meant to tell you on Monday, but I couldn’t write properly.

      No matter how many articles and comments you write, homophobes will remain homophobes, especially those over the age of 35.

      Last year I worked in what must be the most homophobic office in Europe and I got into countless pickles with my co-workers. I couldn’t stand their hypocrisy – listening to REM and Queen and Judas Priest all day long, but at the same time ending every single conversation (whatever the topic) on a homophobic note, usually instigated by the most major closet case I’ve ever met.

      I would say nothing because I felt really sorry for him, but at times it got too much and I tried to make them realize what amazing things gay men have done for the world. They hated me for it. It shut them up for the day, but then it would start all over again.
      I learned that with these people it’s really too late. They will not read your articles, if they do it’s only so that they can make fun of them. I’ve seen it with my own eyes.

      I used to say, ‘Let them be, the next generation will be different,’ but then I overheard eight-year-old boys calling each other gay during a petty fight.

      This is what activists need to do – educate children in primary and secondary schools, and get parents to collaborate. Think of that Some People Are Gay Get Over It campaign in the UK.

      I was very lucky in that I never heard a single word against gays at home. The first time I saw Boy George on TV he was in amazing full make-up. When I asked my mum all she said was,’Yes, he’s a man.’

      She did not tell me that he did nasty things for which he’ll burn in hell. When I was 10 I had the blessing of watching Maurice. When a year later our PSE teacher was telling us that homosexuality was a terrible deviance, it went into one ear and straight out the other.

      With my friends it was different because they had not seen that beautiful love story.

      So let the ultra-moralists on timesofmalta.com say what they will, what difference will it make? But those in their 20s – for whom marriage is the last thing on their minds – need to understand that if they’ll want to get a civil partnership at 35 or 40, then they need to show up in much bigger numbers at Pride.There’s no other way of giving politicians a run for their votes.

  5. Perhaps next time they would walk in the nude; that way nobody will comment on their clothes.

  6. ciccio2010 says:

    One would expect to see some brightly coloured costumes, wigs, jewellery, hats and, for this year only, the vuvuzela instead of that boring whistle.

    Plus a belly-button here and there, some piercings, tattoos, big coloured sunglasses and leather, all adorning a lot of exposed body skin sporting a nice Mediterranean sun tan.

  7. James Grech says:

    what a ridiculous blog!

    • V Mifsud says:

      This woman amuses me.. last year her blog was totally the opposite. Daph, do yourself and your career a favour.. build a bridge and get over it! Those types of parades usually happen in countries were rights are already given. In our case, they’re yet no where to be seen so we march with slogans & placards.

      [Daphne – Errrrr, and these rights are…..? What, exactly? And how does it follow that you can wear colour only if you have rights?]

  8. A. Charles says:

    Yesterday’s march was Malta’s token contribution to European-wide Gay Pride Parades and it showed our ordinariness.

  9. Mario Borg says:

    Yes,their attire should have matched their depravity as it does in other Parades worldwide.
    Sydney, Australia does not hold back,buttocks protruding from trousers if wearing any at all.

    A quick google provides as much info on the ‘colourful’ lives of homosexuals.

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/in_pictures/7272846.stm

    • JoeM says:

      Please desist from posting links to websites that might contain quasi-pornographic material. Diffusion of such material is illegal in Malta, you know.

      • JJCaruana says:

        I hope you are being sarcastic.

      • V Mifsud says:

        Haha! So u call that quasi-pornographic. If you go to the beach and see men in speedo’s you say that is quasi-pornographic? JJ Caruana, i have a feeling he is not being sarcastic at all! Mario Borg, we heard negative comments when we were plain and simple, let alone if we were dressed that way! Malta needs to be much more open minded for that attire.

      • H.P. Baxxter says:

        I last wore Speedos in 1989. Farewell, then, Speedos, and godspeedos.

      • ciccio2010 says:

        @V Mifsud
        Michael Phelps won 8 golds in Speedos in Beijing. No one said he was pornographic.
        Come on Baxxter, go and retrieve those 1989 Speedos.

      • H.P. Baxxter says:

        Sorry to disappoint, Ciccio, but my tackle has grown considerably since then.

    • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

      “Yes, their attire should have matched their depravity as it does in other Parades worldwide.”

      Excuse me? Mr Borg, I do not live a life of depravity, thank you very much. And neither do most other gay people. Why don’t you actually look into an issue before you go and pass a stupid comment like that?

      What insight do you have anyway? The one handed to you by your local parish priest which you have to follow or else? Or the one you struggled to form on your own by using Google which is, as we all know, the main source of wisdom today?

      Someone who bases an opinion on a simple perusal of a Google search is as informed, educated and delusional as a secondary school student who copies and pastes their homework onto a Word document.

      Why don’t you actually read up on the issue before being against it? Is that too hard? Are you too lazy to actually do some reading on the matter? Or are you one of those angry conservatives who refuses to find the proper research because there isn’t any research to back up their narrow-minded rubbish?

      You are free to have your opinion, but please keep your homophobia and discriminatory attitude to yourself, thank you.

      • salamander says:

        wasting real time about perverts and vulgar subjects. Let them stew in their own damnation.

  10. Ivan Vassallo says:

    I hope it’s not an exhortation for some MP to dress up in leather. It would be too much.

  11. latonna says:

    I think there is still a lot of guilt and fear. Apart from the clothes, some of them had really solemn faces. It felt as if all the people around them were pointing their fingers accusing them of being different.

    To be fair however, reading some comments on The Times I can understand why they feel like that. There is so much ignorance out there.

  12. Mark Borg says:

    Abroad it’s party organisers that organise Gay Pride. Here it’s just the ones who have the courage to show their faces in daylight and fight for what counts. Most figure that a march won’t get them much and they’re right.

  13. Great article in yesterday’s newspaper; pity you missed the wood for the trees on Saturday’s Gay Pride manifestation.

    This wasn’t a fashion parade, for God’s sake, this was a manifestation for rights that are well overdue – basic in civilised countries – and that the powers that be seem sterile in doing something about it.

    [Daphne – I asked for a brief explanation as to what those missing rights might be, and I have yet to receive it. The last time I looked, I and the gay girl on the corner had the same rights. When I looked before 1993, the gay boy on the corner had far more rights than I did. The only truly abused group in the recent history of this country, in terms of disenfranchisement and deprivation from basic rights, was married woman. Homosexuals were never forced to resign from the public service, for instance, on discovery that they were homosexual. But when a woman married, she was forced to resign. And when women married, they lost the right to have any say at all in the administration of property of which they owned 50%, and couldn’t even get a passport for their children or have a say in where those children went to school, etc. These are things I lived through, which is why I am so keen to pin down the rights which homosexuals seek, and have no time for vague generalisations. If it is marriage, then bloody well say so.]

    • Daphne – Absolutely right about married women. I know married women who were trying to get out of a broken marriage and found no lawyer worth his/her salt to take their case. How’s that for equality!

      But the rights being demanded by LGBT – and their families and friends are a bit different – and you know it! No matter where one looks, one knows that deep down this country is way, way behind where homosexuality (and racism, for what it’s worth) the rest of the CIVILISED world.

      [Daphne – I’m one of those annoying people who wants things made specific. What are those rights? Homosexuals have the exact same rights that I do. If you mean the backwoods-bunny comments of others, and antediluvian attitudes, then there’s nothing that anyone can do about that. No amount of legislation is going to change people’s minds when they’re raised like that. Again, back to women: we have had equality legislation for a few years now, but I survey I read the other day shows that women in Malta are still paid much less than men, for the same work or post.]

      Just peep at some of the comments beneath the timesofmalta.com report on last Saturday’s Gay Pride March and you will see what I mean; and many of these are coming from young, bright, educated young men – not old fogies like me.

      [Daphne – Nothing you can do about that. Rights have nothing to do with it and marches won’t change anything. It’s the way they were raised by parents with similar attitudes. Having ‘one in the family’ helped change people’s condemnatory attitude to those in broken marriages, but because of the much lower numbers, it’s not going to help with homosexuality.]

  14. Mar says:

    Daphne, how about volunteering for style director at next year’s Pride? I am sure these people will welcome all contributions to make their low-profile event a little more exciting.

    [Daphne – Hey, Mar (if you’re the one I know). I think you’d be a lot better at the job. And I couldn’t help noticing that at least two of the participants seemed to have modelled themselves on John Partridge – Christian in Eastenders. Il-vera dull.]

  15. Mario Borg says:

    Although homosexuality has traditionally been considered a psychological disorder the American Psychiatric Association (APA) removed homosexuality from its list of mental illnesses over thirty years ago, claiming that it “implies no impairment in judgment, stability, reliability, or general social and vocational capabilities.”

    The APA’s decision, however, has been the subject of criticism in recent years with some alleging that the 1973 move to remove homosexuality from the list of disorders was highly influenced by homosexual activism and not objective scientific data.

    In other words it was pressure from the powerful American Homosexual lobby. Normal people realise it is a mental disorder.

    [Daphne – If by normal you mean people like Anglu Farrugia, give me the views of a screaming queen or butch dyke any day. Normal!]

    • latonna says:

      What do you understand by normality Mr. Borg? Can you please define normality as you understand it? And please refrain from going to the same argument that homosexuals can’t have children.

    • WhoamI? says:

      Mario, “normal” is a relative measure. There is no normal. Perhaps you meant “commonly accepted” or “commonly practised”? But then, how would you tell the difference?

      Mental disorder: well, that’s a really cheeky remark. Some normal (your normal, I mean) people are closeted because of people like you who still think that homosexuality is a mental disorder. We’ve only got one life to live, and majtezwel live it the way we believe is best for us.

      You’re dangerous – have a go and read the comments on timesofmalta.com. If you pick up 2 or 3 comments submitted by foreigners, you will see that in Malta we are backwards by at least 50 years – and all this because of people like you who live on a silly rock of just 400,000 people.

      No wonder we’re the laughing stock of Europe. No wonder no one takes us seriously. No wonder we have lazy politicians. No wonder we have outdated laws. Of course, we’ve got people like you.

      I really wonder how people like you manage to sleep at night knowing that your comments hurt people – and when I say people, I don’t mean just the homosexual person. Dak il-pufta jew dik il-lizbjana (as you probably enjoy referring to them) is somebody’s son or daughter, brother or sister, cousin, niece or nephew, friend.

      People have a right to love, and need to be loved. Children don’t choose their parents, and parents don’t choose their children.

  16. latonna says:

    And this music clearly shows what Verdi thought of the church in 1867. If you listen carefully to the music you might get my point. The Pope here is a blind old person.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOTm_ec42z4&feature=related

  17. Mario Borg says:

    Normal as natural. Homosexuality is unnatural.

    adjective.

    1. contrary to the laws or course of nature.

    2. at variance with the character or nature of a person, animal, or plant.

    3. at variance with what is normal or to be expected.

    Quite simple really. Go see a shrink.

    • WhoamI? says:

      you’re probably homosexual and in denial.

    • latonna says:

      I think you are speaking in terms of representation/figures here. And really normality is defined and constructed by people in a society – usually by the majority of people who hold the same beliefs.

      All of your three statements are saying the same thing basically.

      Contrary to the laws or course of nature as defined by who? Is it defined by nature?

      We as human beings have the need to classify and categorise things as we see them as this makes life more predictable and less anxiety provoking. It doesn’t mean our classification system is correct.

      I think to reduce the argument in terms of nature is very silly really. Using your same argument, we could say that becoming a priest or nun and embracing celibacy goes against nature as well.

      So, not as simple really.

    • Edward Caruana Galizia says:

      Mr Borg.

      Here is the problem. Homosexuality exists in nature. In fact a small percentage (approx 7%) of the population of any species is gay. So homosexuality is a product of nature.

      If your argument were true, and that homosexuality was just a psychological problem, then there would be no gay animals because animals do not have the psychology of human beings.

      This is not the case. Therefore, unless you can come up with a reason why animals are gay too then your argument has ended. And please be specific. One explanation per animal, and that means every animal on the planet, including the famous monogamous penguin- since no animal has the same “psychology” if you can call it that.

      Now let’s have a look at your definition.

      1. contrary to the laws or course of nature.
      But homosexuality is a product of nature. Nurture only comes into it when talking about the individual’s attitude to their sexuality. In other words, a person brought up in an open-minded home is more likely to be comfortable with being gay. Someone brought up in a stern conservative environment will have trouble accepting it and might even opt to live a lie forever. This does not make him/her straight. They are still gay, just lying to everyone, or just settling for something less controversial. I don’t know how they manage. In fact it is statistically impossible for a gay man to remain faithful to a female partner.

      2. at variance with the character or nature of a person, animal, or plant.

      But if a person is gay the the unnatural part would be them in a heterosexual relationship since that is at variance with their character and nature. Pretending to be someone or something you re not and thereby doing things that do not come naturally to you is unnatural.

      3. at variance with what is normal or to be expected
      A VERY subjective definition there. What is normal in one society is not normal in another. And also it is too broad a definition too. Therefore using that definition you could say that a shop assistant in Malta speaking Chinese is unnatural, or starting a fist fight is unnatural. These two acts have nothing to do with each other. They may be seen as strange, unacceptable, fun, disruptive, impressive, exciting, etc….but not unnatural. and yet they also go against what is “normal” or “to be expected”. Unless, of course you expect people to start a fist fight and randomly talk to you in Chinese.

      So once again I fail to see your point.

    • Shaun Azzopardi says:

      How can something that is unnatural exist in nature? Everything that happens is natural. Unnaturalness is a nonsensical concept created by mere human projections on what ought to or should be.

      Normality is subjective and shouldn’t be used to dictate what should be, otherwise the great scientific and civil rights successes couldn’t have occurred.

  18. Gabi says:

    I realise that this is somewhat late in the day but since you have several times commented on what are the rights that gay rights activists are requesting, here they are as listed in MGRM’s strategic plan:

    1.a The inclusion of sexual orientation and gender identity within the remit of the Equality body (NCPE).
    1.b Access to marriage for legally recognised transgender persons.
    1.c The facilitation to Gender Identity Recognition.
    1.d The inclusion of homophobic hate crime in national legislation.
    1.e The provision of anti-discrimination legislation in the provision of goods and services to LGBT people.
    1.f The recognition and protection of rights for same-sex couples.
    1.g Non-discriminatory adoption provisions in terms of single parent, second parent and 3rd party adoption.
    1.h Non-discriminatory recognition of reproductive rights.

    I hope this clarifies matters.

    [Daphne – I’m sorry, Gabi, but it doesn’t, because those really don’t look like rights to me. Unfortunately, if we get into an argument about this, we are just going to end up talking around in circles as always (not with you, but with others who also think those are rights). You fail to distinguish between the right to marry – which is indeed a right – with the ‘right’ to marry the person you love, which is not a right at all. Lots of people fall in love with others they cannot marry. It’s the same with the ‘right’ to form a family. You cannot interpret this as the right to adopt or the right to receive artificial insemination/IVF treatment off the state and so on – especially not when you are perfectly capable of conceiving in the normal biological manner but just refuse to do so. I’m going out on a limb here – and will probably be attacked on all fronts – but really, honestly, how much worse can a few minutes of sex with a man be than months of hormone treatment and IVF with all its attendant risks? I just don’t get it. If a woman wants a baby so badly, surely she can get herself to have horrible sex with a horrible man, for heaven’s sake? It’s not as though women, like men, have to be interested for the outcome to be successful. Maybe I’m being deliberately provocative, but I find these things so irritating, honestly. Big deals on all fronts, looking for hardship where there really isn’t any. Can you get a job? Can you make money? Can you live your life? Can you travel, visit family and friends, go out, have fun, go to the bank, eat in restaurants, drink in bars? Yes, you can. Where is all this discrimination you keep talking about. I think you’re probably a really nice person and I follow what you do through the newspapers, but I think you have probably been at the receiving end of far more discrimination and prejudice because you’re a woman than because you’re a lesbian.]

  19. Rachel says:

    My first bristling thought while scrolling through the comments was to do with the means of reference. ‘The gays’? Really? Oh yes, those, them fags and dykes over there. Being ‘a gay’, this grammatical blasphemy really gets to me; you are either gay or a gay person. For the love of leather and motorbikes, please get it right, people!

    My first bristling thought while scrolling through the comments was to do with the means of reference. ‘The gays’? Really? Oh yes, those, them fags and dykes over there. Being ‘a gay’, this grammatical blasphemy really gets to me; you are either gay or a gay person. For the love of leather and motorbikes, please get it right, people!

    I will not defend my sexuality or my choice of whether or not to make it publicly known [says she who posts it on the internet for all to read]. I was unable to attend the pride march because I was out of the country, which conveniently absolved me from stating the fact that I would not have attended anyway.

    I understand that some members of the gay community have a lot to fight for, legally speaking; recognition, equality and so on. None of these issues affect me directly; I have no family to protect nor do I plan on having one in the near future, my employment is not jeopardized on the grounds of my sexuality and I have never been discriminated against or witnessed discrimination on the basis of which gender one prefers to get naked with.

    Thankfully, I also plan to leave our beloved rock, so none of the politics will really matter to me in a year’s time. Me going to the pride march would be like a happily married and staunchly Catholic couple protesting divorce. The point is that those people who marched through Valletta had something to say about the way they are being treated. While those ideas may not apply to me, I recognise that to others, they are very important and the people in charge should listen. I can also empathise because as an atheist in Holier Then Thou-ville, my ideas are not heard either.

    In truth, a pride march is needed because anything to do with the community, be it a gay-themed film, a demonstration or a book, is a political statement. For example, while media pertaining to straight love matches/mismatches/triangles/land mines can exist purely to entertain, LGBT-related media has a double duty; to entertain and to educate. This is simply due to the fact that there are many more straight folk than any others.

    A gay pride march abroad [case in point; London, Amsterdam etc] is mostly a celebration i.e. yes we’re different: you know it, the politicians know it, we know it and now we shall dance on floats wearing very little clothing. Most of these countries have made great steps forward when it comes to serving the entirety of the population.

    Locally, however, is a different story entirely. Here, the handful of demonstrators were less concerned with showing how comfortable they are with their sexualities and more so with the fact that mindless hatred and suspicion still determine whether or not a person is allowed to live the life they want to. The legalities are a much more pressing issue and frankly, I can see why feathers, glitter and tiny tiny thongs might detract from that statement.

    Also, not all ‘the gays’ have style. We’re not genetically predisposed to perfectly matching those shoes with that pair of pants. Sadly, this stereotype just doesn’t hold up.

  20. MANDY says:

    Daphne, your blog is utter CRAP!!! GO GET A LIFE! You should be ashamed of yourself for this PATHETIC blog!

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