Anti Homophobia Week

This is Anti-Homophobia week.

The Rainbow Project, Cara Friend and Lesbian Advocacy Service Initiative, in partnership with The Equality Commission NI, have developed a travelling billboard which will be making its way across Northern Ireland to raise awareness of the prejudice non-straight people still face in this region.

Things have changed greatly over the past 15 years. The introduction of key legislation to protect people who are lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) within their jobs, homes and in accessing goods, facilities and services is welcome.

The recognition given to same sex relationships through Civil Partnerships has also played a part in ensuring the rights of LGB people and has removed another barrier to equality.

  • Brit

    a topic which unites the Pope and Paisley…

  • Of course, as Conall says, we have travelled a great distance towards full equality for LGBT people in Northern Ireland and the Republic (the Civil Partnership Bill there is good, just not good enough).

    Elsewhere in the world, sadly, the picture is not always quite so rosy: with physical attacks, prosecutions, imprisonment, torture and death often being the order of the day for people with same-sex orientation, with such relationships often being outlawed.

    That’s why Amnesty always has such a presence at Belfast Pride, encouraging gay people and their supporters here, to stand up for the rights of gay people internationally.

    Our campaigns always get a great reception – right now we are campaigning against homophobic legislation that has been proposed in Lithuania, which would criminalise the ‘promotion of homosexual relations in public places’, effectively outlawing Pride events, LGBT rights campaigning and possibly even health promotion activities for LGBT people. You can take part in the campaign online here.

  • fin

    Brit, two British political parties are openly homophobic the DUP and BNP and as the last homophobic murder in London was only a few weeks ago you don’t need to go as far as Rome to start pointing fingers, unless you want to…Whore of Babylon and all that.

  • Brit

    Homophobia = the British disease, no?

  • dosser

    Interesting that this thread lies directly above the last one, which is entitled ‘Who’s Afraid of a Big Black Hole?’

  • Gav

    Dosser,

    Interesting that those are the kind of connections your brain makes.

  • fin

    Brit, absolutely not, nor is it a Roman Catholic disease. You shouldn’t make such sweeping generalisations but you should look at the beam in your own society’s eye before pointing at the mote in the Vatican’s.

  • Seimi

    Dosser,

    Interesting that those are the kind of connections your brain makes.

    Gav, to quote Alan Partridge – ‘Back of the net.’

    🙂

  • Brit

    Fin – the difference between us is I’m an internationalist and you’re a nationalist, my political horizons are not bound by national boundaries.

    In any event my comment was not some attack on Catholics (irish or otherwise) but a flippant pointing out that it is a dislike / opposition to homosexuality which links the Pope with those Protestant fundamentalists like Paisley who are otherwise hate all he stands for.

  • Rory Carr

    I’m an internationalist…”, declares this stalwart supporter of the invasion of sovereign nations, the slaughter of their peoples and the imposition of puppet regimes amenable to the dictat of the invading forces – always providing that his country’s government and their allies are doing the invading of course.

    An internationalist in the vein of Kipling rather than Marx obviously.

  • I Wonder

    Rory as regards Brit’s comment on being an internationalist, to quote Alan Partridge – ‘Back of the net.’

    🙂

  • Brit

    “declares this stalwart supporter of the invasion of sovereign nations,”

    The fetishising of state sovereignty is what nationalists and foreign policy realists do, it is anathema to genuine internationalists. We say genocide is a crime whichever side of a national border it takes place. The state sovereighty proponent says it is none of “our business” if being down by a governet to its own people.

    “the slaughter of their peoples and the imposition of puppet regimes amenable to the dictat of the invading forces – always providing that his country’s government and their allies are doing the invading of course.”

    I supported the Vietnamese intervention in Cambodia so its not about my country “right or wrong”. Furthermore, the “slaughter” of the peoples (who in Iraq and Afghanisatin welcomed the invasions) was neither the objective or policy of the invasions. The regimes are not puppets and have not followed the dictat of the forces engaged there. US forces are disengaging from Iraq. When the job is done forces will withdraw from Afghanistan.

    To see either invasion as equivalent to a modern day colonisation of Africa or India is to display a profound ignorance about the nature of imperialism in the 19th Century and the current actions.

  • Neil

    Two things, first:

    Furthermore, the “slaughter” of the peoples (who in Iraq and Afghanisatin welcomed the invasions) was neither the objective or policy of the invasions.

    You must truly be an intellectual of the highest order if you’re actually thick enough to believe the propoganda of your own country. Having read this absolute blinder of a statement I googled Iraq, here is the first website I found:

    Casualties of Iraqi civlians 50,000 – 600,000, think women and kids minding their own business, as opposed to the paid, trained soldiers who murdered them – from 50,000 – 600,000, very wide ranging figure there, but it’s accepted at about 100,000 at least. There’s 100,000 happy civilians there Brit eh? Apply a bit of the old thatcher logic – they’re certainly not unhappy anyway, being dead and all.

    Iraqis Displaced Inside Iraq, by Iraq War, as of May 2007 – 2,255,000

    About 8% of the entire nation displaced. You can add them to the happy pile too eh Brit? Their house was a right shithole when Saddam was in charge, at least now they don’t live in a shit hole (cuase they don’t live anywhere, geddit)?

    Iraqi Children Suffering from Chronic Malnutrition – 28% in June 2007

    That’s 28% of kids that don’t have to eat that awful foreign muck eh Brit? 28% of parents watching their kids suffer from malnutrition – possibly due to the up to 70% unemployment rate in effect where a curfew is not in force. Lucky bastards eh Brit, wonder what the bru’s like over there?

    Might cost a bit more for your medical expenses though, given around 50% of doctors have fled the coutry or been murdered, along with 40% of ‘professionals’, supply and demand etc.

    Average Daily Hours Baghdad Homes Have Electricity – 5.6 in May 2007

    Pre-War Daily Hours Baghdad Homes Have Electricity – 16 to 24

    There you go Brit, more details of this Utopia created by the coalition forces. Electricity bills are down, and the environment is protected. Winners all round.

    Iraqis without access to adequate water supplies – 70%

    Water, who needs it (especially when you drink nothing but water, tea, coffee etc)?

    From a poll taken by your own beloved MOD:

    Iraqis “strongly opposed to presence of coalition troops – 82%

    Iraqis who believe Coalition forces are responsible for any improvement in security – less than 1%

    Iraqis who feel less secure because of the occupation – 67%

    Iraqis who do not have confidence in multi-national forces – 72%

    So they supported them coming over, but then they all changed their minds? Or maybe, Brit, your media’s fed you a line of bullshit about the poor foreigners were overjoyed cause the Brits were coming to civilise them, when in fact they were better off before, didn’t want your intervention then, and they still don’t now. Ungrateful foreigners eh Brit, why should they complain, given your boys giving their lives to fucking destroy the country in the name of oil.

    And second:

    links the Pope with those Protestant fundamentalists like Paisley who are otherwise hate all he stands for.

    Does Paisley hate obeying the word of Christ? They worship the same god, using more or less the same book, the same commandments, the same everything up until Luther split the church. So, fucking catch yourself on, the whole amazing point of the NI troubles is the fact that the two tribes are separated by about a half dozen characteristics in their method of worship (to the same God). Paisley and the Pope have much in common, their agreement in Christian matters (that being the denomination of both men) is totally unremarkable.

  • fin

    who in Iraq and Afghanisatin welcomed the invasions

    Brit, welcomed by those who sought to break-up the state of Iraq and create an oil rich Kurdish homeland and a Iranian linked Shia state. Joined by looters and criminals.

    Both tribes turned on the invading troops immediately when they realised it was a grab for state assets as the occupying powers dismantled the state and privatised everything giving the contracts to companies from their own countries and charging the Iraqis for the pleasure.

    Then there’s the Iraqi’s peoples money which had been frozen in international accounts which was shipped in and handed out in bundles of 10’s of thousands of dollars to criminals and lackeys.

    Welcomed my arse.

    Regarding Afganistan, so no connection with the desire to build a pipeline through the country that the Taleban and UNOCAL spoke so often about

  • Brit

    Neil,

    1. Those killed were largely killed in a civil war/terrorist campaign which took place after the invsasion and was not waged by the occupying allied forces. The participants / agents in that civil war bear the brunt of the moral responsibility not the allies (to do otherwise would be like blaming the holocaust on the french because of Versailles)

    2. The terrible conditions in Iraq are a result of the break up of the Ba’athite regime and Saddam’s clique and the civil war which followed it fuelled in large part by local islamists, sectarians, Iran and AQ. The fact that something bad, the disintegration of civil society, followed something good, the removal of Saddam and his regime (how he loved watching those “peace” demos in Western capitals) doesn’t mean the good thing shouldn’t have been done or that it is the cause of the bad thing. Think the end of the British Raj and the communal / sectarian mass murder in India/Pakistan which followed.

    3. “So they supported them coming over, but then they all changed their minds?” Yes. Once the job of removing Saddam had been completed and they knew the Ba’ath was over they wanted to get on with it themselves

    4. Humanitarian intervention is only ever a least bad option and it is not a strategy for building a society or imposing a democracy, let alone establishing a utopia. It can remove a threat and try to create some stability for the society to rebuild. This has slowly and painfully happened in Iraq.

  • Brit

    Fin,

    Yes the invasion was welcomed by the Kurds and Shia (80% of the population) but not by Sunnis or Christians.

    And if you think the US and other allies were motivated by the direct economic “benefits” to the military / arms industry and via the award of reconstruction contracts you are wilfully ignorant. Such a perspective makes the vulgar Marxism of the long discredited Leninist theory of imperialism seem perceptive and nuanced. It is a brainless Michael Moore-lite conspiracy theory which ignores the reality of the massive cost of the war in order to support a pre-determined view of US foreign policy.

  • Boris

    This has gone very much so off topic!

  • Brit

    Yes it was Rory’s doing, although I probably shouldnt have reacted.

    Anyway back on topic I welcome the campaign. I think society has in general made great strides but there is still a problem of violent homophobic attacks. Also within laddish/football culture in Britain homophobic comments and attitudes, albeit half jokey, are widespread and much more acceptable than racism.

    Whilst many Catholics and evangelics (not to mention Muslims and orthodox Jews) are antagonistic to homosexuality there are plenty of religious people who have no problem and see nothing wrong with it.

  • Rory Carr

    It was Rory wot done it!

    ‘Wot he done’ actually was to clarify the nature of Brit’s earlier declaration that he was a true internationalist. Now he goes on to demonstrate it (as he has done in a number of previous posts) by declaring that much of the problems in Iraq are as a consequence of activity being “fuelled in large part by local islamists”. I wonder where they came from? All those islamists in an almost totally Islamic nation. What a bloody cheek. I asks you, why can’t they be proper CofE like normal people? What?

  • Seimi

    It was Rory wot done it!

    I thought it was Sammy McNally? 😉

    On topic, the travelling billboard is a good start, but more needs to be done to promote awareness and tolerance.

  • Brit

    “All those islamists in an almost totally Islamic nation”

    Islamist does not equal Muslim. Perhaps you’d know the difference if you didnt stay out of the affairs of others?

    Whilst all Islamists are muslims many muslims are not islamists. Call them militant Wahabi fundamentalists or terrorist Jihadis if you prefer. Most victims of Islamists are muslim.

    And I’m not CofE

  • fin

    Brit, stop waffling, war has for a long time been an instrument to stimulate economic recovery, WW1, WW2, Falklands, Gulf1 and Gulf2 (when dragged the world out of the dot com bubble burst)

    WW1 created a bubble which ended in the 30’s depression, which WW2 dragged the world out and that lasted until the 70’s.

    the Iraq war is more Friedman than Lenin, although where you get the idea of his theory been discredited I don’t know.

    Possibly you should focus more on content than trying to sound like a union shop stewart from the 70’s

    Incidently the Sunni population of Iraq is circa 35-40%

    But you skip over my point regardless those who welcomed the invasion did so for its benefit to their respective agendas, again with the last several reasons you’ve tried to put forward for the invasion this on is also illegal under international law, which of course a renowned internationalist such as you will be well aware.

  • Smasher Lagru

    In better news, Maine has voted to support traditional marriage between a man and a woman. In every case where people get to vote they vote this way.

  • Brit

    Fin, I’ve asked you before to explain why you think the war is illegal under international law and pointed out to you the status of international law and the implications of your position (vis-a-vis the Kosovo war).

    For a good critique of Lenin’s theory of Imperialism I would suggest you read George Lichtheim on the topic.

    And the figure of 20% is for Non-Kurdish Arab Sunnis (given that we both accept that the Kurds, 90% Sunni in religious terms supported the invasion.)

  • Dread Cthulhu

    Anything like “National Brotherhood week?”

  • Different Drummer

    Think I see the point DC attempting to make…

    …..and so does Johann Hari:-

    ‘We have come so far in this country thanks to the decency and compassion of most British people – but we have only reached the half-way point. The battle to change our laws was a crucial stage. Now we need to change our institutions. The people who oppose these humane measures hissing “PC! PC!” – or “it’s my religion!” – should know what they are doing. They are ensuring more innocent people like James Parks and Michael Causer – or your son, or sister, or neighbour – will be lynched, simply because they were born gay.’

    Johann Hari: Violence against gay people can – and must – be stopped: The answer lies in changing the culture of two institutions – schools and the police.

    Welcome to Anti-Homophobia week.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    DD: “Think I see the point DC attempting to make…”

    Maybe its a generational thing…

  • fin

    Brit, Not sure you had that conversation with me as I don’t remember it, especially not involving Kosovo.

    Very briefly tho, the UN (and Geneva) set out very clear terms for a war to be ‘legal’ as neither HMG or the US has managed to explain how those terms were met than it is impossible for you to either. What I have seen you post is discredited garbage that neither government even bother trying to front up to the international community any more.

    So forget the rectoric and actually post clear points on why the Iraq war was legal, ie if you have information not known to the international community around the UN resolution or if you have previously unknown information concerning an immediate threat from Iraq post it now, make Slugger famous by been the site that breaks the news to the world. If however you are relying on the empty bullshit both governments have failed with in the past, don’t bother.

    Incidently your information will e of great interest to the German courts who found in favour of a soldier who refused to serve in Iraq in case he was accused of war crimes in an international court, its amazing that the German military does not have access to the information you have, them been in NATO and all that.

    Interesting that you mentioned Kosovo, as I said I’ve never had a conversation with you on this, but more than happy too, my first point is that Kosovo is not recognised by the majority of states in the world, why?

    Regarding Marx, Lenin etc, like most people I grew out of that as a teenager, if Marx’s concept of the fall of capitalism through banking didn’t come about in the past year, it never will, capitalism is dynamic you cannot use century old metrics to measure it and as you are well aware if you can’t measure something you cannot manage it, if I was you I’d don’t the commie Lit in a 2nd hand book shop and start reading up on Friedman before it goes out of fashion as well.

  • Gerry Mander

    http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/scotland/glasgow_and_west/8342056.stm I notice tese sex centred people make a point of not showing any respect for other. Wouldn’t it be nice to go into a male urinal without having the “gay” w–kers who hang out there hanging out there? Maybe George Michael is a victim of homophobia and the world should stop to admire him being fisted in public.

    http://www.google.co.uk/search?hl=en&source=hp&q=king+edward+homosexual&btnG=Google+Search&meta;=&aq=f&oq=King+Edward+homo

    Plenty of reading is available on the gay English monarchs. Which one of them got a hot poker up his over used arse by his disgruntled homophobic wife? Ask to audience or phone a friend.

  • Rory Carr

    “Most victims of Islamists are muslim.”, you say, Brit. But then, by your own criteria, these victims would only constitute regrettable but necessary collateral damage just as you deem the innocent Muslim victims of British and American attacks on Islamists. Would that not be the case?

  • Different Drummer

    @DC

    Like I always say it’s an ‘age of innocence’ thing with you and your ilk want back an era before gay rights before civil rights before PC A time when Tom Lehrer’ houmor’s was all you needed.

    I’m very glad to say that SOME of Tom’s song IS dated – because we made it so…

    And Tom Lehrer has changed: When he heard that Henry Kissinger had won the nobel peace prize he said: awarding of the prize to Kissinger made political satire obsolete.

    At least he could see his 1950s prime time was over….

  • Fabianus

    Smasher Lagru

    In better news, Maine has voted to support traditional marriage between a man and a woman. In every case where people get to vote they vote this way.

    “Better news”? Depends on whether you’re being discriminated against I suppose.

    I wonder how the Maine lobsters would vote if they got the chance.

  • I wonder

    On topic, the travelling billboard is a good start, but more needs to be done to promote awareness and tolerance.
    Posted by Seimi on Nov 04, 2009 @ 03:00 PM

    I know why not airlift the travelling billboard to
    Iraq and get BRIT to drive it around the country to the applause of the grateful newly liberated population.

  • Pancho’s Horse

    What about sexual rights for 12 year old girls, O Fabi anus?

  • Pancho’s Horse

    What about some respect for those among us who like our meat dead, O Fabi anus?

  • Pancho’s Horse

    What about those among us who like a little animal now and again, O Fabi anus?

  • Pancho’s Horse

    After all, queerdom is a broad church.

  • Fabianus

    What about those among us who like a little animal now and again, O Fabi anus?

    But would you therefore discriminate against vegetarians, Pancho’s Arse?

    You’re a queer fish indeed, I have to say.

  • Pancho’s Horse

    No, Fabi anus, we have to draw the line somewhere. Vegetarians are an abomination.

  • Dread Cthulhu

    DD: “Like I always say it’s an ‘age of innocence’ thing with you and your ilk want back an era before gay rights before civil rights before PC A time when Tom Lehrer’ houmor’s was all you needed.”

    Yes… slouching towards 1984 and enacting thought-crime legislation — a grand improvement.

    These niche-oriented “civil-rights” laws simply serve to balkanize the population. Happens with religion as well — the BBC freely takes shots at Christians they’d never dream of taking at, say, Jews or Muslims.

  • Pancho’s Horse

    King James Bible
    Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. Where’s Con O’Jonnell now when we need him, eh Conall?

  • Different Different

    @ DC

    Why is other people gaining liberation such a burden to you?

    Undermining of hate and stopping hate crime means the undermining of thugs and bigots but that’s too modern concept for dear old DC!

    Yes and that is very 1984 – the actual year not the novel.

  • Different Drummer

    In A Recession democracy a Avoiding being Targeted by thugs and bigots gets more difficult.

    When even these bigots can get on the BBC

    BTW DC shows just how out of touch you actually are – even with one of your own hobby horses – the censoring PC BBC.

    as if!!

  • 6countyprod

    It looks like those Neanderthal Americans have hammered another nail into the coffin of homosexual marriage. From California to Maine they have voted to retain natural marriage.

    Funny thing is: Obama’s getting the blame from the homosexual leaders.

  • Fabianus

    6countyprod

    Obama’s getting the blame from the homosexual leaders.

    That’s just so typical isn’t it? Surely we all know by now who’s to blame for just about everything that goes wrong in the world?

    Well…

    Times have changed
    Our kids are getting worse
    They won’t obey their parents
    They just want to fart and curse!

    Should we blame the government?
    Or blame society?
    Or should we blame the images on TV?

    No!
    Blame Canada!
    Blame Canada!
    With all their beady little eyes
    And flapping heads so full of lies!
    Blame Canada!
    Blame Canada!
    We need to form a full assault!
    It’s Canada’s fault!

    Don’t blame me for my son, Stan.
    He saw the darn cartoon
    And now he’s off to join the Klan.

    And my boy,
    Eric once had my picture on his shelf.
    But now when I see him
    He tells me to fuck myself.

    WELL…
    Blame Canada!
    Blame Canada!
    It seems that everything’s gone wrong
    Since Canada came along.
    Blame Canada!
    Blame Canada!
    They’re not even a real country anyway.

    My son could have been a doctor
    Or a lawyer, it’s true.
    Instead he burned up
    Like a piggy on a barbecue.
    Should we blame the matches?
    Should we blame the fire?
    Or the doctors who allowed him to expire?

    Heck no!
    Blame Canada!
    Blame Canada!
    With all their hockey-hullabaloo,
    And that bitch Anne Murray too,
    Blame Canada!
    Shame on Canada, foooor…
    The smut we must cut,
    The trash we must bash,
    The laughter and fun must all be undone!
    We must blame them and cause a fuss
    Before somebody thinks
    Of blaming uuuuuuuuuuus!

  • Different Drummer

    @ 6county & PancoHorse

    How about we start with the right to life…

  • URQUHART

    Surely referring to a gay as a ‘homo’ is insensitive these days?

  • Dread Cthulhu

    DD: “Why is other people gaining liberation such a burden to you?”

    Lesee… there is the example of affirmative action, where lesser candidates are given a leg up, not based on ability or skill, but upon some irrelevant criteria. Then there is the small matter of the inevitable “hate crime” legislation, creating special categories, negating the whole notion of being equal in the eyes of the law… This isn’t “liberation” as much as it is societal balkanization.

    What you call “gaining liberation,” btw, is hardly the case — affirmative action, for example, created a catch-22 for the alleged beneficiaries, with those who don’t need it being unfairly associated with those who were advanced beyond their abilities.

    DD: “Undermining of hate and stopping hate crime means the undermining of thugs and bigots but that’s too modern concept for dear old DC!”

    Actually, DD, it is more a matter of idealism — all should be equal in the eyes of the law. Once you start creating special categories and introduce inequality into the system, you simply stoke resentment and division, reinforcing the very things you seek to destroy. Throw in the fact that these hate-crime laws are selectively and unequally enforced, usually having more to do with the prosecutor’s desire to see their name in print rather than any rational basis.

    You cannot “undermine hate,” insofar as hate is emotional / irrational response. As for “hate crimes,” the reality is that any crime can be bootstrapped into a hate crime by a enthusiastic, weak or cowardly prosecutor, save those hate-motivated crimes that target / impact the majority — in Pennsylvania, for instance, a black radical with anti-white literature went on a shooting spree, targetting and killing whites. Despite the prima facie evidence of the murderer’s state of mind, demonstrated by the targeting of whites and the hate literature, the state declined to apply the hate-crime statute, despite being a slam-dunk. The general comment from the prosecutor was that the application of the statute to a black man would only serve to undermine the intent of the statute. As such, so-called “hate crime” law are nothing of the sort — they create disparate outcomes for the same crime and serve only to balkanize a population and, essentially, lay the foundation for “thought-crime.”

    Your simplistic statist mind-set, with the misplaced notion that you can legislate morality, belief and mental / societal attitudes is the problem, not the solution. Society and its attitudes and beliefs cannot be made to turn on a dime. Societal attitudes and beliefs are akin to an oil tanker — no matter how hard you spin the wheel, the damn thing can only turn so quickly.

  • Fabianus

    Dread Cthulhu

    Well argued my man. Hate-crime legislation is always a slippery slope to go down.

    I believe DD was referring much of the time to the liberation of gays in as much as they should be equal to others before the law. He can tell you himself but for me that implies that gays are placed on equal footing with straights, e.g. in marital issues. This would have consequences for inheritances.

  • Brit

    “But then, by your own criteria, these victims would only constitute regrettable but necessary collateral damage just as you deem the innocent Muslim victims of British and American attacks on Islamists. Would that not be the case?”

    No it wouldnt because the objectives and aims of the Islamists were not legitimate and because they deliberately target civillians/non-combatants.

  • Brit

    Fin

    On the legality question my views which I have posted on here on at least three previous occasions are, in a summary.

    1. International law, as represented by the UN assembly and security council in particular, does not have the moral legitimacy or weight of law made by a legislative body, implemented by an executive and enforced by a police/judiciary of a liberal democracy. This is because the UN is mainly composed of undemocratic states/governments which do not respect human rights and because the security council is subject to the whims of the highly undemocratic Russian and Chinese governments.

    2. Even if the above was wrong there are some laws made by liberal democracies which can be legitimately and rightly breached. If, say, a genocide was taking place and the UN was unwilling to sanction the necessary action to prevent it, it would be right to take action even if unquestionably unlawful.

    3. The Kosovo war was not sanctioned by the UN in advance so were you against the Nato campaign there because it was illegal.

    4. There are disputes amongst experts in international law as to the legality of the war in Iraq. Reasonable and respectable arguments can be made both ways (based in part on implicit obligations and rights which flowed from previous UN resolutions) and the UK’s attorney general advised on this point. It is a grey area, partly given the lack of certainty and clarity of international law and despite the oft repeated slogan of illegal or criminal war as if it is an established fact – it is not.

    5. There is a case that subsequent UN resolutions have effectively retrospectively legalised the invasion even if it was not lawful at the time. The occupation is certainly lawful under international law.

    “Regarding Marx, Lenin etc, like most people I grew out of that as a teenager”

    Firstly I doubt you’ve read any Marx (apart maybe from the Communist Manifesto) and if you have you must have been an incredibly advanced teenager, if not a genius, if you were able to get anything out of Marx’s other writings. Of course Marx was wrong on many counts and many of the accurate aspects of this his analysis of 19th Century Capitalism are inapplicable to 21st Century Capitalism, but he was one of the most important thinkers in modern political philosophy and I think it is flippantly ignorant to say you grew out of it as a teenager. His use of class analysis, his concepts of modes of production, his economically based analysis of historical development and the relationship between culture, politics and the state to socio-economic matters is hugely original, ambitious and useful.

    And there is no “Marx, Lenin, etc”. One was a titan of political philosophy and the other was a dictatorial / totalitarian revolutionary whose beliefs and actions were much less true to Marx than those of Martov and the Mensheviks. His theoretical contribution to Marxism is minimal and unhelpful compared to the likes of Trotsky, Luxembourg, Gramsci, Gerry Cohen, Lukacs, Althusser, etc

  • fin

    Brit, I actually find Mao a much more interesting read, I grew out of Lenin, Marx and Co because because as I said their writings have been long outpaced by capitalism and I much prefer reading pro-capitalist authors nowadays to understand the complexities, but yes I was a very advanced teenager in my politcal reading as were many in North Ireland in my youth.

    Really don’t know how to reply to your comments regarding the UN, lost for words that someone who claims to be a ‘Internationalist’ has so little regard for internationalism, do you also disregard the Geneva Convention, afterall its pretty much the same countries involved in both.

    I’m bemused that you say the occupation is legal under international law, any chance of a reference for that one.

  • Neil

    Brit,

    your arguments for the legality of the war boil down to:

    1) The UN in your opinion are not in a position to declare the war legal or or otherwise. Bully for them, if they can’t in your opinion, who can? Perhaps the world’s foremost international law experts referenced in the link below?

    2) If you’re wrong on point one, there are circumstances where an illegal invasion would be right. So fuck, specify which of these circumstances were present in Iraq, if you’re trying to make an argument for legality, you’ve failed to do so, merely pontificating on things unrelated to the legality of the war, such as your opinion of the UN or the unspecified circumstances that might justify your propoganda.

    3) The Kosovo war was potentially illegal. Again, what is your point. We’re talking about your propoganda regarding IRAQ. Do try to keep up.

    Noting that you have still failed to provide an argument as to why this war is not illegal.

    4) Arguments can and have been made by both sides. Here, you have a point. The administrations of the governments who illegally invaded Iraq, say it was legal. Independent international law experts say it was illegal. Click the link. Of course your government won’t admit that it was illegal, for obvious reasons. It’s the same deal as when cigarette companies fund studies which find that cigarettes don’t cause cancer.

    5) Retrospectively the UN (who you have no time for anyway) legalised the war (in spite of the fact that their standing is not high enough for you to accept their contention that the war was illegal).

    Utter bollocks. The UN adapted to the situation created by the illegal invasion, this doesn’t mean that they retrospectively legalised it. If what you were saying was correct, once the illegal invasion had occurred the UN would not be able to do anything with regard to Iraq as if they did they would retrospectively legalise it. Bollocks, the UN can adapt to the situation caused by an illegal invasion.

    http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/article6917.htm

    You have stated on this site in the past how you have no preconditions, that you’re mind is open to reasonable argument. No one is buying that lie. You have been totally incapable of admitting the slightest fault with your arguments, even when faced with overwhelming evidence in the contrary.

    Your suggestion that the Iraqis welcomed the coalitiuon with open arms is totally laughable. When confronted by the statistic provided by your MOD that over 80% of Iraqis want the troops out, and less than 1% think the coalition is improving security in Iraq, your response is ‘they changed their minds’. Once Sadam was out they turned on the troops. Not as a reasonable person might suspect (using the dozens of case studies provided by the ever giving British on how invading another another nation and imposing your ideals and laws on people who want fuck all to do with you generally ends in disaster) that the Iraqis didn’t want invaded in the first place.

    It’s hilarious to me that the little Englander still clings to the daft notion that the colonials all wanted the British intervention. All lesser people (non Brits) are incapable of ruling themselves due to the fact that we’re all unreconstructed savages.

    Here’s a novel idea, see if you can get your mind round it, there isn’t a country on earth that welcomed British invasion. You’re as unpopular now as you were then, and while the government, who you would have us believe have succesfully filled your head with propoganda, may now be adept at telling the necessary political lies to justify their continuation of being British and invading the people who live in these countries, the ones without electricity, jobs, food or water who you seem to think should be grateful for the daily chance to die provided by the coalition will not be easily fooled.

    Put simply, the war was an illegal one, and while the Brits will no doubt eventually pull out, and dish out medals amongst themselves, they will have created another conflict in the world as they have in Ireland, Palestine, and in numerous other places around the globe where they arrived to put manners on the locals, and remove anything of value to a safe distance, i.e. London.

    Another example of your total inability to concede a point is your continued justification oif your view regarding Paisley and the Pope, I note you’ve ignored the point made illustrating how wrong you were. Don’t expect to hear that coming from you though, more likely some waffling response that’s primary purpose is to evade answering the points made in response to your lies/propoganda.

  • Different Drummer

    THE MAN WHO SHOT HARVEY MILK

    @DC

    I was wrong about you you are not a 50’s type you are a bit more anti diluvian than that….

    For it is quite impossible to get anywhere with some who approches history and culture the way you do. So I’m saying what I’m saying in case some others might need to know.

    For just as language changes so do cultures and society and faster than you think. For you to argue that hate crime can’t be more effectively opposed because hate is an emotion and ‘irrational’ it can’t be more effectively opposed – not just by the state but by people in general is utterly daft.

    What on earth did George Washington and his band of freedom thinkers think they were doing… didn’t they know that starting a revolution against the Brits would never work as those Brits were so much stronger and had the law on their side… in any case they were just being a bit emotional when they tried your leaders for sedition and treason.

    So You changed all that well done!!

    For the others though – we the non WASPs had to wait and that’s the way it just is…or was until modernity happened – televised protest galvanizing other protests…from selma to Rodney king.

    Whatever change we *do* achieve then – you would logically expect us to make sure it was real change and not just a paper exercise. But I don’t hear you shouting “out of the committee rooms into the streets! “

  • Different Drummer

    @Fabious

    Not sure what you thought DC was arguing…

  • Different Drummer

    Hey DC

    Your case of the Black man not convicted of hatecrime does not prove hate crime cannot be applied to black criminals: As this fascist website was quick to point out:

    http://www.stormfront.org/forum/showthread.php?t=310191

    As I said – just because you don’t win all the time doesn’t mean that you should try to win.

  • Fabianus

    DD

    Not sure what you thought DC was arguing…

    The fallacy of trying to legislate against hate crime?

  • Brit

    Fin,

    I take my hat off to you. There are people like the late (Prof.) Gerry Cohen, incredible sparkling intellects who grappled with and defended historical materialism so effectively, academics who spent an entire lifetime working through Marx and his works, but you took it all in and moved on by your 16th birthday. You should be in Harvard or Oxford teaching the Professors rather than wasting your time here.

    And as for Mao..jesus. He contributed nothing to progressive political thought but was just a monstrous mass murderer. The populism of Maoism amongst the Western hard left in the 60s/70s is testament to how wrong the Left often gets it and their Third Worldism a kind of precursor to the kitch anti-imperialism of many opposed to the Iraq war.

    There is absolutely nothing anti internationalist or non-internationalist about identifying the very great limitations and weaknesses in the UN. If the UN is hamstrung and prevented from acting appropriately on a global basis by its non-internationalist and reactionary members, and particularly the veto of Russia and China, then the UN is a obstacle to rather than a conduit for internationalism.

    If one supported the Iraq war as being in the best interests of the Iraqi people (however mad that would obviously sound to you) then the UN’s failure to give express approval was a block on the internationalist obligations on governments to take action.

  • Brit

    Neil

    The questions for those opponents of the war who declare it legal (and it is always the opponents who raise it not the supporters), are (1) what is the signficance of that in moral, political and practical terms and (2) on what basis do they contend that it is so. Almost all (including you) no next to nothing about international law and only started taking an interest in it after the Iraq War.

    “1) The UN in your opinion are not in a position to declare the war legal or or otherwise. Bully for them, if they can’t in your opinion, who can? Perhaps the world’s foremost international law experts referenced in the link below?”

    The UN does not have the moral authority or rights of a normal legislator/executive etc because its not composed of democracies. Just like the government of a dictatorship or absolute monarchy does not have the legitimacy of a representative democracy. It is not necessarily the case that to declare a war legal or illegal for it to be so. A war of self defence is always legal, for example. As I said before under the UN based definition of international law the difference between an illegal or legal act is whether it is supported by the Chinese communist party – a criterion which ought to have no legal or moral weight.

    “2) If you’re wrong on point one, there are circumstances where an illegal invasion would be right. So fuck, specify which of these circumstances were present in Iraq, if you’re trying to make an argument for legality, you’ve failed to do so, merely pontificating on things unrelated to the legality of the war, such as your opinion of the UN or the unspecified circumstances that might justify your propoganda.”

    I wasn’t trying to make an argument for legality but a point that something can be illegal and right, or legal and wrong. This can even happen in a proper democracy but still less so in a non-democratic authority which lacks moral justification. Answer me this – If the war was morally right then should it not have been fought because it was technically illegal? And if it was morally wrong (aside from law) what does its illegal status add?

    “3) The Kosovo war was potentially illegal. Again, what is your point. We’re talking about your propoganda regarding IRAQ. Do try to keep up.”

    My point was that many opponents of the Iraq war on the grounds of its illegality supported the Kosovo war. Mainly because it was the right thing to do. Even the opponents did not raise this issue of legality and only the most cranky, Serbian nationalists called for any kind of criminal charges against the relevant NATO members. For the stoppers who are suddenly such experts in international law they need to explain their position.

    “Noting that you have still failed to provide an argument as to why this war is not illegal.”

    It is you who brought up legality. So the onus is on you (and given the abritary difference between what is legal an illega in this context you also need to answer the question “so what”.)

    “Independent international law experts say it was illegal.”

    Opponents of the war who are lawyers say it was illegal.

    5) Retrospectively the UN (who you have no time for anyway) legalised the war (in spite of the fact that their standing is not high enough for you to accept their contention that the war was illegal).

    Utter bollocks. The UN adapted to the situation created by the illegal invasion, this doesn’t mean that they retrospectively legalised it. If what you were saying was correct, once the illegal invasion had occurred the UN would not be able to do anything with regard to Iraq as if they did they would retrospectively legalise it. Bollocks, the UN can adapt to the situation caused by an illegal invasion.

    Now we disagree on the factual question of whether the Iraqis wanted the invasion (or the Afghans) but do you accept that if they did the invastion would have been right?

    “Put simply, the war was an illegal one, and while the Brits will no doubt eventually pull out, and dish out medals amongst themselves, they will have created another conflict in the world as they have in Ireland, Palestine, and in numerous other places around the globe where they arrived to put manners on the locals, and remove anything of value to a safe distance, i.e. London.”

    Firstly the Brits arent to blame for every conflict in the world however much you would like it. The actors on the ground (like the Palestianians and Israelis or the Ulster Unionsts/Irish Catholics) have some say. Second if you think this is an invastion to colonise or control Iraq and to plunder its wealth, like the 19th Centuary imperialism you must be insane.

  • Brit

    “It’s hilarious to me that the little Englander still clings to the daft notion that the colonials all wanted the British intervention. All lesser people (non Brits) are incapable of ruling themselves due to the fact that we’re all unreconstructed savages. ”

    This totally fails to understand the thought processes and analysis of the progressive in favour of the invasion. Firstly it was not a British intervention but mainly a US intervention (also involving other nations) and I would have wanted it to be genuinely international and including a coaltion of muslim nations. Second the point was not to rule the Iraqi people but to rid them from a totalitarian nightmare so they could rule themselves. It was clear that homegrown opposition was nowhere near overthrowing the regime and only outside help to do so. Third it was the opponents of intervention who said, the Iraqis are unsuited to democracy, who are the racists and with the colonial mindset that the advantages of liberal democracies are only for White/Western/Christian societies.

    Irish nationalists failed to support a war against the Nazis and its no surprise that they objected to a war against the Ba’athists.

  • fin

    Brit, its been a while since I’ve had an interest in this and I can’t arsed to hit Google on your behalf, but I think you’ll find Trots was the war monger believing that the workers had to be led into class struggle, however as I’ve told you several times but you seem to choose to ignore it constantly I have no interest in Lenin or Marx because because they have no relevance to modern society or capitalism, modern society is built around telecommunication and capitalism left the Gold Standard behind many years ago two things unforeseen at the turn of the century.

    And FFS how can Mao be a war monger? who did he pick wars with?

    If you are so confident in the relevance of Lenin and Marx today fire the names of the top Marxist countries at me?

    Brit, been honest, you bore me, your opinions on everything are just your opinions and they’re not all that interesting they readily available from any rightwing website.

    I think the concenus is you are right and 99% of the world is wrong, oh and they’re all against you. Yawn

    why don’t you list the top 10 most successful leninist leaders in the world to day which will be the easy way to prove the brilliant of Marx and Lenin and will further prove that I am wrong in stating they have no relevance

  • Rory Carr

    …you are a bit more anti diluvian than that….

    And what’s so wrong with that, Different Drummer? I’m on record as being against floods myself and no one has ever suggested that there was anything odd about this stance.

    What are you, a water engineer or something? Do you make your living from flood control?

  • Fabianus

    “…you are a bit more anti diluvian than that….”

    I’ll never understand the animosity towards those of a diluvian persuasion.

  • Rory Carr

    Stop this, please! You’ll have us in floods of tears.

  • Fabianus

    Rory Carr

    LOL! Good comeback.

  • Different Drummer

    Roy Asks me:

    What are you, a water engineer or something? Do you make your living from flood control?

    Then writes:

    Stop this, please! You’ll have us in floods of tears.

    Think you answered your own question there compadre..

  • Different Drummer

    @Fabious

    I think I given real examples of those who have been convicted of hate crime. It an actual working law under which there have been successful prosecutions.

    So what did you think you were agreeing with in DC’s screed -apart from it being unfair to bigots and thugs?

  • Fabianus

    Drummer

    What was I agreeing with? Simple: he showed how hate-crime legislation gives the finger to our long fought-over principles of equality.

    This single thought of his impressed me both by its formulation and its wisdom:

    >>As such, so-called “hate crime” laws are nothing of the sort—they create disparate outcomes for the same crime and serve only to balkanize a population and, essentially, lay the foundation for “thought-crime.”<< If we embrace such faux legislation with enthusiasm then Philip K. Dick's nightmares aren't far behind.

  • Different Drummer

    @Fabious?

    Apart from the fact that your point is academic now – you clearly have not been paying attention to the examples I gave.

  • Fabianus

    Different Drummer

    There’s no one calling himself “Fabious” on this blog. You’re the one who clearly hasn’t been paying attention.

  • Different Drummer

    Fabainus….

    The spelling of your true name is immaterial here it’s what you say that isn’t true.

  • Fabianus

    Different Drummer

    Do try a little courtesy if you wish to lock horns with me.

  • Different Drummer

    To the Fabianus

    You want me to treat you with courtesy when you don’t even have the courtesy to read what I posted about the subject.

  • Different Drummer

    To The Fabious

    ‘lock horns with me’

    I hope you are referring (metaphorically) to what comes out of your head…

  • Fabianus

    Yeah, right. Discussion closed as far as I’m concerned.

  • Different Drummer

    Fabianus

    You weren’t having a discussion with anybody – least of all me so why bother – face it when someone gives you what you have been handing out as ‘comment’ here you don’t want to play anymore.

    or do you?

  • Brit

    “And FFS how can Mao be a war monger? who did he pick wars with”

    http://www.nytimes.com/2004/01/09/opinion/09iht-edmirsky_ed3_.html

    It was his “own” people so presumably mass murder is OK with you appeasers and non-interventionists?

    And “war monger” is a pretty meaningless term.

    Your comments on Marx, Lenin and Trotsky betray a certain lack of understanding of the signficance and importance of the former as an historian, economist, sociologist and critical analysit of Capitalism and a misapprension regarding my political beliefs (I am a liberal social-democrat not a Marxist or any kind of revolutionary socialist).

  • Different Drummer

    THE MAN WHO SHOT HARVEY MILK

    The banner I posted on my first post above has been hanging over these exchanges for a while and since there is little or no interest in why I put it there perhaps I should explain. Because it is germane to our topic.

    For the majority of the posters hostile to the legal concept of Hate Crime and also the very idea of ‘hate crime’ it points to why it became necessary. I am referring to the actual legal outcomes and implications of the actions of the court in response to the events as opposed to the movie based on them.

    When Dan White who shot to death George Moscone the Mayor of San Francisco and Harvey Milk ‘The Mayor of Castro Street’ It had been established fact by the time of the trial that the double murder had been pre-planned. White had forced his way into the City Hall building via a ground floor window to avoid his gun being detected. It was or should have been an open and shut case of double murder in the first degree.

    White had motive – (he had been thwarted by Milk and Moscone in his bid to regain his position at City Hall from which he had resigned just a few weeks earlier) and he made and took the opportunity – ignoring the possible consequences.

    Consequences that he was well aware of as he was an ex-policeman. However, the actual consequences and implications of the case were somewhat different.

    White’s defense team supported by the police association successfully argued that his judgement had been addled not by hate or premeditated murderous intent but by the fact that he had consumed more than the recommended amount of hamburgers – fast food and that this meant that he was not guilty of murder in the first degree but in the second degree – manslaughter as it is known in the UK. He was given a light sentence for the double murder cased by his mind being confused by too much fast food consumption.

    Now I will not dwell on the ethics of the case – clearly something was very wrong if the laws of evidence could be overturned in this way where motive could not be clearly established when the motive was clear to all accept the judge and jury.

    It was therefore understandable that law makers and some legal professionals would desire to revise and re-ground the concept of ‘motive’ .

    Two additional crimes helped them in their task in lobbying for such crimes to be specially designated acts.

    One was the Howard Beach Incident in 1986 where three black teenagers were brutally assaulted – one dying as a result of being hit by a car after being chased into the road. Their crime? They had been a little bit too fresh with a group of girls outside the pizzeria where they had gone to get help after their car had broken down.

    The disproportionate reaction of the attackers was noted as not being caused by common everyday racism – but something much stronger -much more deeper and murderous.

    By late 1990s the concept of hate crime as a crime motivated by the fact of victim being targeted due to the fact of their race had been established in law. No such argument had gone mainstream in relation to sexual identity.

    That changed after the death of Matthew Shepherd in 1998 who was targeted, robbed and ritually tortured to death in Laramie in 1998. Following several attempts by his family and human rights campaigners over the last 11 years Federal law was finally amended by the American Congress on the 28th of Oct 2009.

    It is also noteworthy that the defendants in the case failed to persuade the jury that they had been ‘panicked’ into torturing and killing Matthew because he had made an advance towards them – a defense used very commonly to get a lighter sentence in homophobic murder cases.

    Now crime motivated by homophobic hate has been established as a possible cause for a felony in the US.

    Last year sentencing guidelines where changed here to account for homophobia as an additional motive in the execution of a crime.