Enter your email address to receive our daily LGBT news roundup

You're free to unsubscribe at any time.

Alan Cumming and Ben Summerskill receive OBEs

Post your comment

Comments on this article are now closed.

Reader comments

  1. Was it done through a seance?

  2. Simon Murphy 25 Nov 2009, 3:06pm

    “Both were presented with their honours by Princess Margaret.”

    Risen from the dead.

    I suppose she was the appropriate person to present that waste of space Summerskill with his award. A dead princess presents an award to a professional gay who thinks gay couples don’t deserve equality for their relationships. How apt.

    When is Stonewall going to start consulting the community they pretend to represent. At the moment they only represent their own members.

  3. “When is Stonewall going to start consulting the community they pretend to represent. At the moment they only represent their own members.”

    Exactly Simon. Like Nick Partridge of the THT – who has presided over an epidemic of HIV infections and turned the virus into an industry and golden egg for the charity’s AVR manufacturing donor – and other quango stooges before him, this is yet another reward for croneyism (doing the Government’s bidding). In Summerskill’s case he has been advancing the criminalization of free speech while doing sod all for intrinsic gay rights.

  4. Black Hawk Down 25 Nov 2009, 3:24pm

    “Summerskill was honoured for his services to equality …”

    Ha! More like honoured for toeing the line and not speaking out for equal marriage rights and harassment legislation.

  5. Simon Murphy 25 Nov 2009, 3:24pm

    Summerskill doesn’t deserve that award for his lazy efforts at sucking up to whoever is in power (at the expense of the community he pretends to represent but in fact doesn’t represent).

    I think Stonewall need to disband. They get government money every year solely to rubberstamp whatever the government asks them to.

    The sole point of Stonewall’s existence is to allow the government to tell the queer population ‘Oh what are you complaining about. Stonewall agrees with us’. Don’t they realise or care the low regard that Stonewall is held in?

  6. I congratulate Ben Summerskill. I think this is very well deserved. At least he has the guts to stand up for for gay causes.

  7. Summerskill’s only getting this award because he keeps his mouth shut and toes the government line.

    When will he have the guts to stand up for US and demand equal marriage rights?

  8. Simon Murphy 25 Nov 2009, 5:17pm

    Stonewall waste their time on irrelevancies such as ‘homophobic’ number plates on cars (although it’s quite obvious the owners of the cars with the ‘Dyke’ and ‘Faggot’ numberplates who Stonewall went after were gay themselves.)

    Likewise why are Stonewall wasting their time campaigning to force churches to perform civil partnerships instead of campaigning for equal access to civil marriage.

    Summerskill does not deserve that award. He deserves a serious wake-up call which tells him his organisation is a relic of the 20th century and that a gay group whose sole purpose is to rubberstamp government policy regarding LGB people, cannot and should not pretend to represent the LGB population (not to mention the Trans population who Stonewall refuse to represent).

  9. Robert, ex pat Brit 25 Nov 2009, 5:53pm

    Simon Murphy, absolutely agree with you. Summerskill and StonewallUK are useless. Both oppose full marriage equality and I hope Stonewall goes out of business. Come to think of it, I doubt if Summerskill and Stonewall really know what full equality is about. If anyone deserves an OBE for the fight for full equality its Peter Tatchell who knows far more about it than anyone. I’d love to see Peter become the national spokesperson on gay isues and equality. I can’t think of anyone better and more qualified.

  10. I don’t think Stonewall does get public money. It’s funded by its supporters.

  11. Not applicable 25 Nov 2009, 6:35pm

    Stonewall will be even more aloof and detatched in their ivory tower within the M25 moat from the realities of abuse & homophobia faced by gay persons from institutions like our vile homophobic police forces.

  12. Simon Murphy 25 Nov 2009, 6:41pm

    No 9: Robert: “If anyone deserves an OBE for the fight for full equality its Peter Tatchell who knows far more about it than anyone.”

    Indeed but Peter Tatchell is a republican I believe. He would refuse an OBE if he was offered it.

  13. “He would refuse an OBE if he was offered it.”

    Not necessarily as it would increase his influence in the field of human rights.

  14. I know nothing about Simon Murphy apart from his obsession about, and personal animus against, Ben Summerskill that pops up several times on every thread that mentions Stonewall. Less frequently and less vitriolic might be more effective, Simon.

    Two substantive points:

    1. It’s not an X-factor popularity contest between Peter Tatchell and Ben Summerskill. There’s no one in Britan more personally courageous than Tatchell, who has contributed more than any other single person to gay rights and to broader human rights. I’m sure that Ben would be the first to say that. But Peter alone, and Peter’s approach alone, would not have achieved the advances that we have achieved, and I’m sure Peter would be the first to say that. The approaches are complementary.

    2. Stonewall seems to get up some people’s noses for being too…too what? too establishment-orientated, too moderate, too something, maybe too successful. I don’t agree with Stonewall on every stance, and some of its causes affect me personally more than others. But its approach, underpinned with good research, shows the breadth of our interaction at every level of society and culture. Look at its work relating to education, especially about bullying; employment and workplace culture; relationship to “faith” organistations; provision of health services, to name but a few.

    Stonewall’s biggest achievement is helping to put us in the mainstream; our rights are basically established and unchallenged, except on the extremes. For the first time ever, we can actually look at the next election and make our decisions on the same basis as “ordinary” citizens, not only on what’s good for us as gay people. And we’re not an issue in the election either.

    Yes, I want marriage rather than civil partnership. But I’d rather have – for the time being – UK civil partnership with effective (no, not perfect) legal equality than have a Massachusetts or Iowa marriage that will NEVER bring equality at the US federal level.

    I suspect our full marriage equality will come sooner than we think, through Europe, but that’s another story…

  15. Simon Murphy 26 Nov 2009, 12:55am

    Sorry Clay.

    If Stonewall wants the support of the LGB population then they’d better start representing the LGB population. And they are not doing that at the moment. Whether or not Stonewall members support legal equality for LGB people or not is largely irrelevant.

    If they are going to position themselves as the voice of the LGB population (which they do!), then they should be representing the LGB population.

    Who decided that it was acceptable for Stonewall to agree that access to civil marriage for gay people was unacceptable. It wasn’t me, or anyone I know.

    What exactly is Stonewall’s mandate? And on whose specific behalf are they speaking?

    Because they are not speaking for me.

  16. Simon Murphy 26 Nov 2009, 11:06am

    No 14: Clay: “Stonewall’s biggest achievement is helping to put us in the mainstream; our rights are basically established and unchallenged, except on the extremes.”

    This comment made me laugh.

    It’s as if the Campaign for Homosexual Equality; OUTrage!; Gay Switchboard; LGB Societies up and down the country and the millions of LGB people who have come out to their friends, families, colleagues etc didn’t exist.

    Who is Stonewall meant to represent? What is their mandate?

    How do they engage with the communities they are claiming to represent to decide on policy.

    How many LGB people did they consult before they decided we don’t deserve or need marriage equality?

    Civil partnerships are not going to be taken away from us.

    Why is Stonewall refusing to demand marriage equality? Are they scared of upsetting their political masters. Because they are NOT representing the LGB population’s interests by pretending that we are happy with CP’s.

  17. “What exactly is Stonewall’s mandate? And on whose specific behalf are they speaking?”

    This is the exact same question that people are currently asking of The Terrence Higgins Trust in light of years of failed and ineffective HIV prevention policy that has served to enrich themselves and the pharma lobby. Gordon Brown even said himself in his World Aids Day message the other day that he is committed to gay men being tested with not a word of getting the HIV rate down. It’s like they have building up the HIV rates with campaigns that could only have encouraged the spread of the disease in order to reach this point where they are pushing testing to the hilt. Why? Yesterday Pink News reported that HIV rates in the UK have increased over 70% since 2001. In case anyone needs reminding that was the year that charities like the THT started taking their orders directly from the Government and have been following their guidelines ever since. Oh yes, and THT’s Chief Exec. received his gong earlier this year. There is something truly rotten in these organisations that jump through Government hoops while treating the communities they are supposed to serve with such utter contempt. Some may be dreading the prospect of a new Tory Government soon, but at least it gives some hope that the revolving doors between the likes of Stonewall/THT and central Government will stop rotating at 80mph…

  18. Simon Murphy 26 Nov 2009, 12:12pm

    Stonewall and the Terrence Higgins Trust seem to be run by “career homosexuals”.

    Both groups have the ear of government but totally ignore the people on whose behalf they claim to speak.

    Congratulations to Alan Cumming on his OBE by the way. He deserves it.

  19. Simon Murphy: “He would refuse an OBE if he was offered it.”

    It is quite likely he already has. They always make a discreet request before publicly announcing offers, so they don’t get politically beaten about the head by the gesture by ungrateful, republican tossers.

  20. Not applicable 26 Nov 2009, 2:02pm

    Oh, I am SO with Simon Murphey, Rob (not RobN) & Black Hawk Down on this one. Stonewall has ‘sold out’ LGB & especially ‘T’ since Angela Mason went and I used to be a regional Stonewall Equality 2000 rep.

  21. Such a shame those two queens couldn’t have been awarded their prize by the other old Queen.

  22. Simon, I was a member of CHE and suspect that we agree on more than 90% of everything. Why the rancour? Let’s just move on together. Different people have different approaches.

  23. “Such a shame those two queens couldn’t have been awarded their prize by the other old Queen. ”

    LOL, Ben Zeroskill and Nick Pratridge – the Quango Queens!!

  24. Clay:
    | I suspect our full marriage equality will come sooner
    | than we think, through Europe, but that’s another story…

    Some hope, since marriage is specifically excluded from the powers of all European bodies. Instead it is left to the individual national governments to decide on moral grounds. The only open avenue there is on the grounds of religious discrimination, since all legal barriers to sexual minorities were or are promoted by certain religions on the grounds of morality, and discriminating on religious grounds is a high level infringement of human rights. But no one shows any sign of being prepared to open that can of worms.

  25. @ Mike:
    I don’t think Stonewall does get public money. It’s funded by its supporters.

    Only yesterday the Evening Standard reported that Stonewall’s sister quango The Equality and Human Rights Commission had awarded it £148,000. Stonewall well and truly has its snout in the taxpayer trough. Oink!

  26. Pray, what have either of these people done to deserve such accolades? A self-serving lefty out to feather his own nest, and keep his head down whenever issues might conflict with the Labour government’s, and a third-rate thespian who I have *never* seen in a decent film. Incidentally, if it was royalty that dished out these gongs, we might get a fairer balance instead of Brown’s minions handing out loyalty vouchers.

  27. Smart big awards and prize money
    Is killing off black poetry
    It’s not censors or dictators that are cutting up our art.
    The lure of meeting royalty
    And touching high society
    Is damping creativity and eating at our heart.

    The ancestors would turn in graves
    Those poor black folk that once were slaves would wonder
    How our souls were sold
    And check our strategies,
    The empire strikes back and waves
    Tamed warriors bow on parades
    When they have done what they’ve been told
    They get their OBE’s.

    Bought and Sold
    from “Too Black, Too Strong”
    by Benjamin Zephaniah
    http://www.benjaminzephaniah.com/content/237.php

These comments are un-moderated and do not necessarily represent the views of PinkNews.co.uk. If you believe that a comment is inappropriate or libellous, please contact us.

Top commenters this week

Latest stories

See all