By Ross Sharp
It is the mid-1980’s and I am working for a company in Sydney’s Pyrmont, a record company. There is the pressing plant, warehouse and recording studios downstairs, and two floors of offices above. On the ground floor is a canteen.
The canteen is managed by a young man named Gary, an affable, softly spoken and gentle man of good humour, and he is happy in his work, he is content. He is responsible for most of the food prep each day, the hot meals, and makes the sandwiches during lunch hours, along with two others who assist.
Gary is a gay man, which is no secret among the staff, and appears to be of no concern.
Then, suddenly. …
There is change.
The “gay cancer”, they began to call it. The wrath of a vengeful God. Punishment for our transgressions, our sins. It is predicted that cities will crumble and towers fall, Satan and his vile and corrupted clutch of sordid cacodemons shall stalk the earth, leaving naught in their wake but barren and fruitless wastelands, the flesh of babes in arms shall be ripped asunder, devoured, men and women raped in the streets, and we shall see darkness and we shall feel pain.
Gary’s in the canteen making sandwiches. He’s in the canteen handling foodstuffs.
A contingent of staff approach management to raise their concerns.
How they expressed them, I do not know, but I suspect it went a little something like this …
“What if he sneezes, or coughs? On our food? Food we are expected to eat?”
“What if he breathes on us?”
“What if he cuts himself and bleeds all over my devon and tomato sauce sandwich? How would I know?”
And so on.
The management acquiesce to these “concerns”.
Gary is transferred from the canteen to the warehouse.
One day, I return to work from lunch at the pub, and I see Gary sitting on a rafter in the warehouse, lost in a reverie, and from the expression on his face, faraway eyes, it is a sad reverie indeed.
I wave to him.
“How are you, Ross?”, he asks.
“Not bad. Yourself?”
“Oh. You know”, and he shrugs.
After a moment, I say to him, “I think it’s f*cking shit what’s happened. It’s shit.”
He shrugs again, says nothing, nods, and I return to my desk seething with rage.
I am not a gay man.
None of my best friends are gay, nor have they ever been.
Yet. In the course of my life, the living of it in this world, I have met many gay men and women, through work, socialising, friends of friends, friends of flatmates, and the only thing I can or ever could say about these gay men and gay women is this …
They are men and women.
If there is a “gay agenda”, they’re either taking a bloody long time to implement it, or I’m too thick to have noticed.
During my adolescence, my emergent sexuality, a sexuality I didn’t, at age 13, know was even sexual in nature, was not and never has been the subject of debate. It was not a “lifestyle choice”. It was not a choice.
My eye turned, with no prompting, no lessons in “decency” or “morality” toward women.
There was Peggy Lipton from “The Mod Squad”. Susan Dey from “The Partridge Family” (the only reason I watched that ghastly show). A little later on, there was Suzi Quatro. In leather. Oh. My. GOD. And, when Countdown (in error) first played Blondie’s “In The Flesh”, and I clapped eyes on Deborah Harry, my jaw dropped so hard, I almost tipped off the couch.
I wanted to play with the girls, although at that age, if the opportunity had arisen, I doubt I would’ve known what the game was, let alone how to play it.
That all came a little later. So to speak.
Decades after the A.I.D.S. epidemic, a residue, a sticky, mucky, thick and filthy residue of the gay fear and loathing of that time still persists in the minds of many; small minds, tiny minds, minds uncomplicated and untroubled by fact, truth, reason or logic.
Here is one example, a one star review of the film “Spotlight” from Amazon.com …
“Just too @&(%^ PC. They let their wish to sell homosexuality as normal get in the way of the truth. The truth is, first, that heterosexual rape and abuse of children is at least as common in public schools and non-Catholic religious institutions as it ever was in Catholic ones. Second, the rape and abuse going on in the Catholic Church was unusually homosexual and committed by homosexuals, period. The data is overwhelming that homosexual men are far more likely than heterosexual to be rapist or abusers. Even though homosexuals are at most 4% of the population, they commit at least of third of the sex offenses against children. And, the Catholic Church was one of those institutions targeted for exploitation by gays and by child rapists (or people who were both). Check out the data from the Family Research Council and in Michael Rose’s Goodbye Good Men. This weird, childish film tries to vilify all religion, tries to sell a “traumatized” gay victim as otherwise normal, tries to separate the rapists’ homosexuality from their crimes, and bascially is peddling dangerous myths and mind games.”
Peadophiles. Polygamy. Bestiality. Perversion. Diseased. Disgusting. Queer.
Filfthy f*cking faggots.
To be gay is to be less than human, they say. It’s abnormal. It’s sick. It is an affront to God, to civil society, a self-indulgent depravity, a disease of the mind and a corruption of the body and of the soul.
So some say.
I say this. To those “men”, those “women”, so fearful, so full of hatred, of ignorance, guided as they are by ancient superstitions in a nonsensical fiction written by men in frocks, “Go f*ck yourselves with forty sticks and die of f*cking cancer”.
These men in frocks.
They’re at it again …
“Australia’s most senior Catholic bishops have intervened in the federal election, warning Malcolm Turnbull and Bill Shorten not to undermine traditional marriage.
Marriage and family are at the heart of a healthy social environment, the ACBC states, but “political decisions can end up undermining marriage and providing less and less support for families despite a rhetoric that claims otherwise”
“The fact is that economic decisions have been less and less favourable to families in recent years; and it may be that political decisions in the future will undermine further the dignity and uniqueness of marriage as a lifelong union of man and woman,” the bishops say.”
“A lifelong union of man and woman”, it has never been and never will.
I wonder what they think of Rupert Murdoch or James Packer, these bishops?
These defenders of truth, these moral bastions, so pure, so righteous, so convinced of their own infallible judgements, their Holy institution so transparent, so accountable, so just, devoted as they are to peace among men (not so much the women, especially women, or – gasp – girls in trousers).
I have no quarrel with religion or those of faith who find comfort and solace in their beliefs in times of trouble or turmoil, those whose faith is a bedrock, a foundation upon which they build their lives.
I have quarrel only with those who use their faith as a hammer with which to beat those of no faith, or those whose lives they deem to be … “wrong”, especially when it comes to matters of sexuality, consensual acts between adults, gay, straight or transgender, or the issue of women’s reproductive rights, of choice.
How dare these bishops lecture government, lecture us on how we should live, how and who we should love.
Are these the very same men, who for decade upon decade, cloaked the sins of their own ilk in silence and obfuscation? Are these bishops the very same men who protected the fiddlers on the altar within their ranks, the ones with children always on their minds, the ones who leave stains upon their garments and stains upon the souls and bodies and in the mouths of innocents, and who remain unrepentant, without conscience, empty, soiled, damned?
Would they had but one neck, I would HACK. IT. THROUGH.
I ask these bishops.
Your God. Why did It give us desire, just so you may use it to prove we are the ones depraved?
Go to Hell.
Go to Hell.
Reliable reports inform that Ross Sharp has recently purchased a new PC and a rubber mallet. Further details as they come to hand …