World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Is the Queen homophobic?

Is the Queen homophobic?
Never acknowledged the existence of gay people

Never supported a gay charity

Never uttered the word gay in public

London - 1 June 2012

"Not once in her 60-year reign has the Queen publicly acknowledged the existence of the gay community - or gay members of her own royal family. She has never supported or visited a gay charity. Although she is a patron of many good causes, none of them are gay or serve the gay community. The words 'gay' and 'lesbian' have never publicly passed her lips," said human rights campaigner Peter Tatchell, Director of the human rights advocacy organisation, the Peter Tatchell Foundation.

He was speaking in the run-up to this weekend's Diamond Jubilee celebrations in Britain, which commemorate Elizabeth II's 60 years on the throne.

"Even when she announced government plans for gay law reform in her Queen's Speeches to parliament, she did not use the words lesbian or gay. Apparently, mentioning gay people is beneath the dignity of the monarch," he added.

"While she has spoken approvingly of the UK's many races and faiths, for six decades the Queen has ignored lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Britons. If she treated black and Asian Britons in the same way, she'd be denounced as a racist. Why the double standards?

"Whereas most of us now welcome and embrace gay people, the Queen has never done so.

"As our head of state, Elizabeth II is supposed to represent and embrace all British people, not just some. How much longer will the LGBT community have to wait for royal recognition and acceptance?

"There is solid evidence of regal prejudice. Gay staff in the Royal Household used to be banned from bringing their partners to the annual Christmas Ball at Buckingham Palace; whereas heterosexual staff were always invited to attend with their partners. This homophobic discrimination was exposed by the LGBT human rights group OutRage! in 1995. It was only after a protest outside the palace and the ensuing bad publicity that the royals dropped the ban.

"When there are major tragedies involving the loss of life, the Queen often visits the site and the victims in hospital. This did not happen when neo-Nazi, David Copeland, bombed the Admiral Duncan gay pub in Soho, London, in 1999, killing three people and wounding 70 others. At the time, it was the worst terrorist outrage in mainland Britain for many years. To most people's surprise, the Queen did not visit the bombed-out pub or the hospitalised victims.

"Defenders of the monarchy point out that many royal staff are gay men. This is true. So what? Having gay staff wait hand and foot on the Queen is proof of nothing, apart from the fact that she likes well-mannered, well-groomed male servants. It's the equivalent of rich racists claiming that they can't be racist because they employ black staff to clean their homes and cook their meals.

"Ever since the public relations blunders at the time of Princess Diana's death, the Queen has gone to great lengths to be more in touch with the mood of country. She presents the monarchy as modern, compassionate and inclusive; often referring to the value of a diverse multicultural, multifaith society.

"On gay issues, however, she remains curiously out of step with public opinion. While I doubt that Elizabeth II is a hard-core homophobe, she certainly doesn't appear to be gay-sympathetic," said Mr Tatchell.


© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Werewolf: America, The Gated

How, in a global metropolis like New York, do you write about immigration as a problem to be solved? And yet immigration is a hot button issue among those fighting to break away from the unruly clump of starters in the race for Republican nominee. More>>


Binoy Kampmark: US Bomb Strikes Hospital In Kunduz

According to US military sources, “there may have been collateral damage” to the medical facility. “This incident is under investigation.” A statement issued by the office of the President Ashraf Ghani said that Army General John Campbell, chief of US-led forces in Afghanistan, apologised. More>>


Binoy Kampmark: The Fall Of Tony Abbott

The question was one of timing. The Coalition had been registering losses in poll after poll. The Abbott style hardly improved after a spill was forced on the party. Despite claiming that he would be ushering in a spring clean, he continued bypassing ministers and MPs... More>>



Pacific.Scoop: Smaller Pacific States Call For Coal Moratorium

PNG Loop: Leaders of the Pacific Smaller Island States have called on all nations – especially the advanced economies in the region – to rise to the challenge of climate change. They want to steer the world on a path where climate change is no longer a threat to earth. More>>


Get More From Scoop

Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news