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Gay former soldier James Wharton: ‘We need to clean up gay saunas’

  • londonscandie

    During his military career Wharton never made it above the very lowest ranks in the army. Why on earth should his opinions be treated as newsworthy?

    • Paul S

      He describes himself as a middle class snob, no you were a private in the army. A middle class snob would have at least had a commission! He is just delusional and would do us all a favour if he just shut up.

      • Armylad79

        It’s called milking your five minutes of fame. Maybe if he wants to make judgements he should look closer to home!

    • GeaVox

      What an interesting life maxim you must live by… “only listen to people who have rank, power, money or all three”? Doesn’t that make you an arse-licker?

      • londonscandie

        Would you allow a hospital orderly to carry out brain surgery on you? Yes, you probably would.

        • GeaVox

          Aw, you poor wee dunce! Clearly logic is not your ‘forte’! :D ridiculous pup, getting up on your hind legs and yapping! What comes out at your other end has about as much value!

          • londonscandie

            I see you’ve already had the surgery.

  • Roku

    Sounds like back-peddling to me. This seems like internalised homophobia; some straight people go to swingers parties, dogging grounds etc, some gay people go to saunas & cruising grounds. I hate it when I hear gay men looking down their noses at the choices other gay men make. In my opinion itsthe Wharton’s of the world that feed homophobia by shouting ‘Even I think gays are disgusting’. Society as a whole needs to get over its hangups about sex.

    • Miko

      “I hate it when I hear gay men looking down their noses at the choices other gay men make.”

      But you are looking down your nose at Wharton, condemning him for his opinon, blaming him for feeding homophobia and telling him he needs to alter his attitude towards sex. Thus, by your own admission, you hate your own attack on Wharton.

      Bottom line: It isn’t helpful to simply attack Wharton for making moral judgments. There is no way to avoid moral judgments and moral claims. We can’t avoid them, so the better approach is to evaluate them and try to select the right course.

      • Rob

        Thank you for a word of sanity. He’s entitled to his opinion. The reaction is because those of us who use saunas know they are disgusting.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1331532608 Thomas J Wright

      Plenty of straight people would be repelled by other straight people going to swingers clubs. The word is prudish, not homophobic.

      • TakisPapas

        Yes. But no one would suggest that heterosexuality is a BAD thing, because swingers clubs exist. Unfortunately sexual promiscuity is still used against all homosexuals all over the world. Big difference!!!

  • Jock S.Trap

    Yawn

  • OldFashionedGayGuy

    No idea who he is but as a gay man I have to agree with him. The idea of meeting with strangers in a sauna just to have sex disgusts me. I’m not prude or anything, I just think in this day and age people should be more educated about health risks. There’s also nothing wrong with actually getting to know someone before you jump into bed with them! I don’t know how many gay men would agree with me but trying to find a partner that isn’t just interested in what’s in your pants can be very difficult these days! Where’s the love gone!?

    • Sparkyu1

      Then don’t do it. If you don’t want to meet for anonymous sex, that’s your choice. I don’t either; but no-one is demanding I do so. You live your life, your sex life and your love life your way, and you and he can let others lives their’s their way

      • OldFashionedGayGuy

        Absolutely agree. I certainly don’t want to see any bans or anything come into place either, but I think he makes a valid point about the health risks. Also, do you not feel a pressure to live your life a certain way, just because you’re gay? That was more the point I was getting at. I often feel, through speaking to other gay people, like i’m somehow different or excluded from the ‘gay community’ because i’m not interested in things like saunas. I often feel more homophobia-like pressure from within the gay community than outside of it!

        • Andy Millan

          What a load of crap, i don’t go on the scene or visit gay saunas but i have never been made to feel i am not part of the gay community. As to more homophobia from within the community since when did gay guys mock or beat another gay simply for being gay? Is the gay community perfect? no but what community is? The thing about community is it is diverse you saying a section of the community is disgusting for using saunas you are doing exactly what you accuse others of doing. Why not live your life and stop worrying about how others live theirs, especially since what they are doing has no effect on your life whatsoever.

          • OldFashionedGayGuy

            Sorry, when did I say ‘a section of the community is disgusting’? I said the IDEA of ME going to a sauna disgusts ME! Very different. Also, I said “homophobia-like pressure” not homophobia. Again, different.
            With regards to feeling part of the gay community, that could very well come in time. It’s just not been my experience so far.
            I’ll reiterate again that I don’t think there should be any bans or forced closures – people should be able to make the choice. But, the health risks still stand. And that could affect everyone. So I don’t think “cleaning them up” is such a bad idea.

          • Andy Millan

            So what have you done to try and become part of the community? Gay man’s chorus? football team? volunteer at a hospice? GLBT switchboard? Gay Mens Health? Hand out condoms at pride? To be part of the community you must participate and not just criticise certain aspects of it. It really irks me when people criticise the lack of feeling part of the community when they do nothing to make themselves part of that community,

          • OldFashionedGayGuy

            That’s a fair comment. Circumstances haven’t allowed me to become more involved yet. That’s why i’m hoping it will change in time.
            Just to point out though, i’m not criticising people who use gay saunas. That is people’s choice – but at least do it safely! I have spoken to many, many gay people who use saunas, and the stories of what goes on there is, quite frankly, frightening! Again it’s nothing to do with morals or prudishness, just common sense and decency!

          • Andy Millan

            Well since i visited places like saunas to refill their condom supplies i have actually seen and not just heard what goes on and i saw nothing frightening. Not my cup of tea but certainly nothing like the horror stories people like to tell about them. Perhaps you should visit one to see what they are really like, or do you simply believe everything you are told and repeat it as truth?

          • OldFashionedGayGuy

            Whether it’s safe or not, I know without visiting one that it isn’t for me. I just feel things can always be done to educate people more on things like safe sex. Changing people’s attitudes towards it though is something entirely different! That goes for the straights as well!

          • Andy Millan

            So it is only sauna patrons who engage in risky sex? and one also has to assume that all patrons of saunas engage in risky sex. I agree a lot more has to be done to educate people on safe sex and the dangers of risky sex practices, however one has to differentiate between educating and dictating ones own morals to others. There is a lot that can be done to make it safer for the men who patron these places, making sure they always have condoms for example. I think however that education must start with the young and that campaigning for better sex education in schools is a better way to occupy ones time, instead of bemoaning the problems why not get involved and be part of the solution.

          • GeaVox

            And you visited ALL the gay saunas, I take it…?

        • Sparkyu1

          Very much so – I think there is a lot of policing of how we should be gay and that if you don’t fit some preconceived views you are regarded as “heteronoramitive” or “assimilationists” by some self-styled police of gay purity

          It’s precisely because of that I disapprove of us setting arbitrary standards upon our community. I loathe people telling me I’m not gay enough because I don’t do X Y Z and equally irritated by the idea I’m letting the side down if I do do X Y Z.

          • OldFashionedGayGuy

            I’m glad i’m not the only one who thinks that! I understand we’re still in a sort of transitional period for people’s sexuality being accepted by society, but to not be accepted by gay people is something entirely different, and not at all pleasant!

          • GeaVox

            Has it occurred to you that most people may feel that that ‘public sex’ is NOT a civil righ?

        • Michael Grima Seychell

          yes as a gay man I do feel pressure, to get married & adopt children & live in a house with a white picket fence .but some of us want to live differently so don’t go to saunas & shut up .

          • OldFashionedGayGuy

            I’m so glad you contributed this to the conversation. Thanks!

        • Mark Y

          If you feel more homophobia within the gay community than outside of it, I think you’ve been spending too long in gay bars. Go to your local straight bar, let people know you’re gay and you’ll see what real homophobia is.

          • OldFashionedGayGuy

            That’s not what I said. Read it again. I know full well what homophobia is, having been on the receiving end countless times, just like most others here.

    • Phil H

      Anyone who starts a sentence with the phrase “I’m not a prude or anything…” is basically a prude. Don’t like the idea of casual sex in gay saunas? Don’t go to gay saunas and have casual sex. That way you can be happy and leave those who do choose that avenue to live their lives without your tut tut moralising.

      • PaulBrownsey

        “Anyone who starts a sentence with the phrase “I’m not a prude or anything…” is basically a prude.”

        Anyone? *Anyone*? Really? You *know* that?

    • GeaVox

      At last! I was beginning to think that all the gay men on PN are thick, uneducated CHAVS… you restore my faith.

    • Steven Gregory

      It disgusts you? What else disgusts you? It can all be shut down at the same time.

  • Sparkyu1

    “I ignited a discussion” is such a pathetic achievement. There’s another word for that it’s called “trolling”. It’s quite easy to say nasty, stupid, offensive or downright ridiculous things and provoke a reaction. Easy – but hardly useful or somehow a mark of achievement. And who is this pretentious man who thinks these debates aren’t already happening without his precious input?

    “Clean up their image” is just more community policing. I say again, we will never have equality if that equality is dependent on straight people finding us palatable. We will never have equality if every last one of us is required to maintain some arbitrary standard of perfection in order to reach it and maintain it. We are not respected as people if that respect is conditional on us fitting into molds that straight people set. Our humanity is not dependent on the hoops we jump through

    And it’s impossible – the goal posts will always shift. The same people who get huffy about gay saunas are equally outraged by Pride parades – or us kissing in public (yet another taxi driver has kicked one of our couples out for daring to kiss again), or us holding hands in public. Constantly trying to hide elements of ourselves and our community for the sake of straight approval will achieve nothing when our very existence is obscene – except send the message that we somehow have a duty to hide anything that straight people don’t like seeing.

    I’ve no interest in building a new closet out of shame, respectability and begging for straight approval

    • fermata

      Brilliantly said. Agree 100%. This is the type of mentality that’s embarrassed and/or offended by drag queens, femmes, freaks, TG’s, leather dudes, bears, cocksuckers at the tubs and all the rest of the diversity (meaning not whitebread middle america) that makes a sexual identity group wonderful – gay, straight or bi. I hope someone reminded him that straight people have their clubs too, their sex haunts, their massage parlors and all the rest. This kind of need to control the message reveals a deep insecurity and discomfort with who he is. I hope he grows up.

    • Rob

      What? I really don’t like saunas and agree they give us a bad name – but am thrilled to see same sex couples hold hands and am always on the Pride march. Don’t make moral judgements over the rest of us especially when you are accusing Wharton of doing the same.

      • Steven Gregory

        Gay saunas don’t give me a bad name, anymore than GIRLS GONE WILD videos or Shotgun Willies strip club gives my brother and sister-in-law a bad name.

  • Dazzer

    From his initial article and this fairly duff response to criticism, one gets the impression that James Wharton has never been to a gay sauna. He’s got a whole Daily Mail vibe going on in what he says.

    Perhaps he’s going to slag off Stephen Gately and Elton John in his next column. Or perhaps he’ll slag off Tom Daley for wearing Speedos. Either way, he’s clearly more of a gimmick commentator than a gay commentator.

    • lee

      well he said they need cleaning up -he must have been otherwise how would he know?

      • PaulBrownsey

        Yes; no-one can genuinely believe the hungry should be fed unless they’ve starved.

      • Steven Gregory

        I wonder if he recommends a full mopping or just a little Febreze?

  • James!

    A truly awful human being

    • Joe

      That’s a bit over the top. This man served for his country in war, read his book first before jumping to the conclusion that he is an awful human being because of his opinion on saunas.

    • Quinn

      You describe yourself well.

  • Read Fagburn.com

    What does he mean by ‘cleaning up gay saunas’?
    People should start going to them for flower-arranging classes?

  • David Greensmith

    He still sounds as if he’s in appeasement mode. “Please like me. I’m the nice kind of sterile squeaky clean gay man that doesn’t have casual sex or go to seedy places. No leather chaps or cock rings for me – I wear chinos and the jumper my gran knitted me from a pattern in Woman’s Realm. Don’t lump me in with all of those nasty sleazy perverts. Please like me. What do I have to do to make you like me?” Unfortunately, just like staying in the closet so that you don’t “upset” other people (who probably know you’re gay anyway), trying to fit in with what you think is the “acceptable” face of being gay isn’t going to work either. If people don’t like you for going to a gay sauna, it’s the “gay” bit, not the “sauna” that gives them the problem. If someone isn’t a bigot and doesn’t have any problem with you being gay, they are going to be open minded enough that if you do go to gay sauna’s they’ll conclude it’s your business who you have sex with and how often, and not any business of theirs to judge you.

    • Steven Gregory

      You nailed it!
      “Appeasement mode” combined with internalized homophobia produces such statements.

  • Paul

    Does he really think it’s only gays that have sleazy saunas? He needs to round the block a few more times !! At least gay saunas give out condoms str8 ones don’t !!

    • Rob

      Straight people dont have openly accepted venues where they can go for gang bangs. Brothels are illegal.

      • Steven Gregory

        Do they not have private swingers clubs in the UK? They have them in the U.S., posing as motels with swimming pools and high fences.

      • CHBrighton

        There’s a sauna for straights to do just that around the corner from where I am now, and there is at least one other in the town. As well as advertised parties and swingers groups. And have you never looked at the Craigslist website to see what’s going on in the ‘personals’ section?

  • Rob

    Wharton has a point and saunas further the stereotype that gays sleep around and have no respect for monogamous relationships.

    • Gerry

      Of course, no straights would EVER think of doing that, would they?

      • Rob

        Let’s face it, a LOT more gays than straights sleep around and don’t stay with one partner. This is why equality is so hard to achieve. Furthermore, the sexualisation of pride events sickens me.

        • Ron

          How on earth do you know that? I think that straight people are equally as promiscuous as homosexuals. Marriage – which we were denied for so long – does not mean monogamy for many straights. The idea that we SHOULD have few sexual partners and be totally monogamous is a religious one. Straight people, sorry to point it out to you, have sex all the time with many partners. Don’t believe the lies: sex ISNT bad. Sex ISNT a dirty trademark of the gays.

          • Ron

            PS equality does not mean we should be the SAME as the others, it means the others should accept our DIFFERENCES and not discriminate against us because of them.

        • Paul

          Ever been to Magaluf, Rob? In case you haven’t, it’s nicknamed Shagaluf by the thousands of straight people who flock there to shag each others brains out.

    • Andy Millan

      Really? you are going with that old flannel? Men are men whether straight or gay, and deep down all men are dogs.

      • PaulBrownsey

        Can you quote or cite the studies that demonstrate this?

  • Keith,

    There is no such thing as a gay sauna in the UK. The equalities act states that no service may be refused on the grounds of sexual orientation, hence the Devon B&B debacle.

    Whilst it is true that many homosexuals are attracted to saunas because they can ogle the bodies of strangers, the sauna room is a public facility, like a bus or a library, and it is unlawful to commit acts of indecency in such a place. For this reason, some saunas that are marketed to appeal to homos have private facilities for such liasons. Shutting down saunas serves no purpose, however, any sauna that is found to have breached indecency laws or tolerated drug abuse or allowed indecent activity in the actual sauna or other non private area should be closed down. I favour a zero tolerance approach to indecent public behaviour, homo or straight.

  • Keith

    There is no such thing as a gay sauna in the UK. The equalities act states that no service may be refused on the grounds of sexual orientation, hence the Devon B&B debacle..

    Whilst it is true that many homosexuals are attracted to saunas because they can ogle the bodies of strangers, the sauna room is a public facility, like a bus or a library, and it is unlawful to commit acts of indecency in such a place. For this reason, some saunas that are marketed to appeal to homosexualites have private facilities for such immoral liasons. Shutting down saunas serves no purpose, however, any sauna that is found to have breached indecency laws or tolerated drug abuse or allowed indecent activity in the actual sauna or other non private area should be closed down. I favour a zero tolerance approach to indecent public behaviour, homo or straight.

    • Gerry

      Stop trolling, Keith.

      • Keith

        Someone doesn’ t like facts or on topic discussion that voices legally held opinion

        • Andy Millan

          No, i think it is your stupid comments he dislikes.

    • Andy Millan

      Do go away you sad little man.

      • PaulBrownsey

        And they say intellectual standards are falling in this country!

  • Gerry

    Wharton is a prat of the first magnitude !. BTW, why did he leave the army, I wonder?

    ‘I’m All Right, Jack ! Up with the ladder !’ That sums him up. He has a partner, he’s out and presumably he has suitably private accommodation.

    Not everyone is fortunate to live in such a golden triangle; for many people, saunas may not be ideal, but they are all that’s available. Closing them would simply lead an increase in unsafe sex taking place in unhygienic conditions in unsuitable or even dangerous locations, offending others. What would that achieve?

    • Van

      I’d say you are the prat. You can’t just admit that you prioritize orgasm over human health and happiness. That’s why you want these saunas open. And to ease your mind, you tell yourself that gay men are inherently animals and if they can’t go to saunas, they will just mate in the street. What you are really saying is that *you* would copulate in the street if the saunas vanished. Give some credit to others. They aren’t all as depraved as you.

      • Paul

        No you are the prat. Your “contribution” is utter drivel. Anyone who can write: “you prioritize orgasm over human health and happiness” is clearly someone who cannot be taken seriously.

        • GeaVox

          Van is clearly at the opposite end of the ‘Australopithecus Homo Sapiens continuum… and, as a Sapiens, he was able to articulate what you cannot even understand… so… Drag your knuckles back to your cave and gnaw on your bone, like a good lil’ ‘Pithecene! :D

          • Paul

            Taking five lines to say “you are as dumb as a box of rocks” gave me a really good laugh.

  • Fjalur

    It is disgusting but people have the right to be disgusting.

    • Andy Millan

      Wow, another moral arbiter, just because you find it disgusting does not mean everyone else does. How about you stop thinking about it and move along. Comments like this don’t add to the discussion and they only show the true depth of your intellect.

      • Serkan M

        He or she has the right to feel disgusted. I feel disgusted by it but that’s how I feel.

        • Andy Millan

          So that means you should have the right to share it with everyone but i do not have the right to reply to that? Perhaps you should read up on what free speech actually means then get back to me.

          • Serkan M

            You have a right to reply but be constructive. Telling someone to ‘move along’ because you don’t like what they say is not along free speech.

          • Andy Millan

            And you are the arbiter on what constitutes free speech are you? Me telling you to get knotted is an example of free speech, me saying i think you are an idiot also constitutes free speech. You have the right to reply to these comments in whatever way you choose, that is the beauty of free speech.

    • Tom

      Nah, they really don’t as a general matter. It rather depends on the specifics.

  • lee

    please go away you boring fart you have only been on the gay scene 2 minutes -its people like you that cause gay people problem in everyday life

    • PaulBrownsey

      “you boring fart”.

      Wow, that *is* a convincing argument. Gosh, I never had such a sharp perception of the truth until you put it like that.

      • Paul

        Yes you are a boring fart, Paul. Sarcasm isn’t a convincing argument either and stupid, patronising sneering comments like yours just make you sound like a troll.

  • Serkan M

    Im sorry but i agree with this soldier. HIV cases have recently increased among the gay community and these places don’t help.

    • Andy Millan

      Yes they have, they have also increased in the hetrosexual community and the black african community, is this also the fault of gay saunas?

      • Serkan M

        No but it plays a part.

        • Andy Millan

          Then cite the studies that back up this assertion of yours. It is all fine and good saying “it plays a part” well so does bareback sex, the decreasing use of condoms with young people (gay and straight) there are actual studies on these factors with published figures. Everything you asserted in your comment was supposition and quite frankly ignorant and more than slightly racist.

      • Serkan M

        And btw, gay HIV cases account for HALF of all cases in the UK. So clearly there is a problem around culture.

        Secondly, rape in Africa is more prominent and contraceptives are not as common as they are here.

        I think the gay community has a responsibility to not engage in behaviours that put themselves and others at risk.

        • Mark Y

          Just to let you know, I’m sure you can use condoms in saunas. I’m also sure that saunas do not account for the rise in HIV. I’m also sure its a bit racist to suggest that the high levels of HIV in africa are because the men are prominent rapists.

          • Serkan M

            Of course saunas account for some of the rise. I think it is very naive to think it wouldn’t.

            Secondly, It is not racist at all. You need to educate yourself. Have a look at rape in the Africa and you will understand. It is a common form of sexual violence in Africa.

          • Mark Y

            I’m educated enough you patronising little shlt. Rape is a common form of sexual violence in many countries. If you knew anything about rape statistics, you would know that many countries do not even report rape because of cultural taboos. Many countries also have high cases of rape that do not equate with HIV infection levels. So, it is racist to suggest that africas rape epidemic is due to male rapists. I think it is you who needs an education.

            As for saunas and HIV. Is africas HIV epidemic because of gay saunas?

            Your argument makes no sense. You are disgusted by saunas and attempt to justify your disgust by blaming HIV. Sad and pathetic.

          • Serkan M

            You said Africa. So I am talking about Africa. Like I said go read up. Half of all HIV epidemics is South Africa occur due to rape. WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU LIBERALS!!!!

            GAY SAUNAS ARE IN THE UK and of course it does play a part in HIV increases if people are having unsafe sex its not helping. Like I said ‘It plays a part’ in cases.

          • Andy Millan

            Perhaps you could quote the studies from which you get your information on gay saunas and the rise in HIV? or perhaps post a link to the statistics on the rising HIV infections directly linked to the patronage of said saunas? If not i suggest you stop posting made up garbage. As the old saying goes It is better to remain silent and be thought of as a fool than to open your mouth and remove all doubt.

          • Serkan M

            yawn.

          • Paul

            So that’s a “no” to the request to justify your ignorant assertions with some facts then, is it? By the way the gay community is far better at not engaging in practices that put themselves and others at risk than the straight community. I suggest you go and lecture them and stop peddling your ignorant opinions about HIV here.

          • Serkan M

            HAHAHHAHAH! Really. Is that so? Then why is it that more than just under half of all HIV cases were among men having sex with men. (nat.org.uk)

            What is the point? You clearly do not want to go and look at the facts for yourself. It’s like listening to a holocaust denier.

            Some people, no matter what you say, will never listen.

          • Paul

            You take one fact and then use it to propagate your simplistic, racist views. Every contribution you have made to this discussion betrays your ignorance about HIV.

          • Serkan M

            Like I said. Go do some research and find out. But believe what you wish. There is simply no way to save some people in humanity. Ignorance is bliss. I wasn’t even talking to you in the first place so I don’t know why you joined in.

          • Paul

            I joined in because you are making up lies about the spread of HIV. It’s you who need to do some research and stop making ignorant statements that saunas account for some of the rise in HIV cases and that African men are more likely to be rapists.

          • Serkan M

            Go away troll. Your just being annoying and ignorant now.

          • Paul

            Haha. Clearly you don’t like your ignorance being pointed out.

          • Serkan M

            No… I just have a life and your boring me.

            1) Use your common sense.

            2) Go look at sexual violence in Africa.

            Now stop being a troll.

          • Paul

            Ah yes. When you can’t quote any research to back up your ignorance, cite “common sense” and say look at Africa, “it’s obvious”. And yes I’m not surprised you find it boring when people challenge your stupid opinions and just don’t accept whatever you happen to say as fundamental truth.

          • Serkan M

            Go away.

  • RamraiderUK

    If men don’t go to saunas for sex, where do you think they’ll go? Do you honestly think that they’re going to stay at home and play scrabble – I think not! It’s better that people can meet in a safe environment. Also, what about straight people? Swingers meet in saunas too. Should they have to stop too? This is consensual sex. What right has anyone to tell consenting adults what they should be doing? Step into the 21st Century will you.

    • David

      Saunas are not a product of the 21st century. They are a product of the extreme repression of the 20th century. At that time, society wanted nothing more than to shuttle you off to a sexual ghetto, where you could do your dirty business like stray dogs. The rest of the world outside of the sauna was the straight world. They lived in the light, and we in the darkness. That is what you are defending and what you wish to perpetuate.

      Where would be people go if there weren’t saunas? On dates? To a dinner and movie? Maybe to a party? There might actually be conversation and connection and, dare one hope, affection prior to coitus? But if that is too mature for your tastes there are myriad options. The fact that you can’t imagine anywhere else to be other than a sex sauna shows that you are a 21st century man with a mid-20th century brain.

      • Steven Gregory

        Excellent comment, but saunas that host man-to-man sex are found in ancient cultures.

        • Serkan M

          So are things like mass murder and so on. Doesn’t make it correct though.

          • Steven Gregory

            Now you’re being plain stupid equating gay saunas with mass murder. Stop it.

          • Serkan M

            No…my point is that just because something is done as tradition through the ages, doesn’t make it beneficial or correct.

          • Steven Gregory

            Mass murder is a “tradition through the ages?”
            You’re an idiot.

          • Serkan M

            Don’t insult me. I havent insulted you and I think it is rather rude.

            My point was that through the ages, death was more commonly used as a method of ridding individuals. e.g the monarchy, those in society…Nazi’s, Stalism and so on. We have now reached a higher level of consciousness where we are more aware of our behaviours to ourselves and each other.

          • Steven Gregory

            Mass murder is a “tradition through the ages?”
            You’re an idiot.

          • Serkan M

            Rather be an idiot then a whore.

          • Serkan M

            We have evolved beyond having random sex with strangers who don’t really care about us and who want us and we want them for just than one thing.

            If you haven’t then that’s a very sad loss for you.

          • Steven Gregory

            You’re an idiot.

          • Serkan M

            cry me a river.

      • Lasair

        I hardly see the problem here – if you don’t fancy casual sex with strangers in a sauna, simply don’t do it… I don’t invade your Good Housewives Afternoon Club, leave my sex pits alone ;)

        I honestly hoped that we have already outgrown this holier-than-thou, judgemental attitude and looking down on people’s lifestyle choices

    • GeaVox

      Now, that is a gift to homophobia, if I ever saw one. “If men don’t go to saunas for sex, where do you think they’ll go? Do you
      honestly think that they’re going to stay at home and play scrabble…”. So, you too believe that to be gay means having to live like a dog and behave like one? ALL gay men can ONLY have sex in saunas? So, pray tell, what was the point of our campaigning for equal marriage, when all we needed to do is demand more saunas? Hilaaaaarious clutz!

    • Steven Gregory

      I think a lot more gay men meet online than in saunas. Bars and cruising spots were the first venues to shorten the trip from wink to bed, then bathhouses shortened it even more by removing clothing, now the internet is the most direct route. What’s next?

  • Mark Y

    This stupid little puritan ex soldier is a thorn in the side of liberty. He needs to shut up. I’ve never been in a sauna in my life, but for him to take the moral high ground plsses me off.

    Sounds like he’s thinking about saunas quite a lot. Wouldn’t surprise me if he got caught one day off his head on crystal meth in a sauna orgy.

    • David

      How dare he take the moral high ground! Doesn’t he know that, by virtue of being gay, he can’t express a moral view on any subject?

      BTW, even if he were heading out to a sauna this very day high on crystal meth, it wouldn’t detract from his argument one iota. The argument stands or falls on its merits, not on the purity of the heart of the person making the argument.

      • PaulBrownsey

        “The argument stands or falls on its merits, not on the purity of the heart of the person making the argument.”

        Great point. It’s astonishing, the number of people on this board who think that to insult someone is to prove that what they say is false or unreasonable.

    • GeaVox

      Would it come as a huge shock for you to hear that, actually, nobody gives a flying duck what pisses little old wrinkly you?

  • Serkan M

    If people want to go and have random sex with a stranger who could be a rapist, murderer or pschopath thats their choice. I mean so what if they have HIV, Gonorrhoea, Hepatitis. Their allowed to catch it if I want by not using protection. Don’t touch their liberties.

    • Phil

      I could meet a guy in a pub, or through a friend or even a knitting circle, and he could turn out to be a rapist, murderer, or psychopath. That imaginary weirdo could also have an STD. Your argument is basically nonsensical. And unsafe sex is a choice made by men and women in all walks of life and in all situations. Every sauna I’ve ever visited has had condoms on hand, which is more than I can say for many other places people meet partners for sex.

      • Serkan M

        No it isn’t. If I meet someone anywhere else (without sleeping with them asap) I get to know them so there is less of a chance of them being someone of a questionable character.

        Secondly, once you know the person and you’re together then you can suggest checking for STD’s. And where are all these other places? I doubt gay men are all gathering behind the garden shed.

  • http://batman-news.com Michael

    If saunas are irrelevant they would have gone out of business a long time ago, and Mr. Wharton wouldn’t be having this “discussion.” Besides, if the saunas were closed, where would all the married straight men go to get their jollies?

  • Erica Cook

    So, basically it’s our fault. We aren’t straight enough. Yeah, no.

    • David

      Erica thinks that having sex with strangers in saunas is “being gay.” And not having sex in saunas is “being straight.” This is a case study in internalized homophobia, rainbow icon notwithstanding. I think the logo of the Christian Institute might be a better icon for you, Erica.

      • Erica Cook

        I don’t think it is being gay, I think it’s being single and not interested in marriage. I’ve never taken part in it, (obviously, I’m a woman) I don’t agree with doing it, but I won’t tell people that something they do makes them deserve discrimination. And the fact is the other side defines this as being gay, settling down and having the 2.3 children is being straight to them. Those of us who want that are deamed by the advocats for gay rights as the socially acceptable gays. The fact is if we are fighting for equal rights we don’t get to pick and choose what we say deserves equality. To say what someone does in a sauna deminishes my stand for equality is wrong, plane and simple. (Sorry for spelling, I’m dyslexic and don’t have time for spellcheck right now)

  • David

    Wharton is right. He shouldn’t apologize or feel defensive. On the contrary, it is those who have fought so diligently to sustain a culture of loveless, commercialized sex as a way of life who should be apologizing abjectly. Being gay is not a “lifestyle” but organizing one’s sex life around large numbers of loveless sexual acts with multiple partners is. Lifestyles, in contrast to sexual orientation, are taken on voluntarily and can be changed to better meet our needs. And there is nothing wrong with looking back over 40 years’ worth of data to see how such a life holds up by comparison to other ways of living.

    The truth is that, on average, a life of hook ups in saunas and bars is directly correlated with a vast array of morbidity and early death. Human beings need love. They need stable connections with other human beings. They need emotional connection as well as physical intimacy. When this is lacking over the long term, there is inevitably a significant rise in stress, depression, anxiety, loneliness, social isolation, and from that, increased substance and alcohol use. This is separate and apart from STIs which is the second half of this 4 decade long catastrophe.

    While it is true that some straight people go through a period of “sowing their oats” during their teens and early 20s, very few do it for decades or a lifetime. We have, and the consequences have been appalling. You defend this, you are defending the infliction of misery and harm on the next generation of gay youth.

    • Serkan M

      Very well said.

    • Paul

      We have to contend with religious bigots telling us that gays are immoral, gay sex is disgusting and being gay is harmful. Now, it appears that some gays are taking up lecturing us all too. I’m happy for you, David, that you have decided that you want “love and emotional connection”, but you and Wharton should stop trying to force your values onto the rest of us. Frankly, your condemnation of people who don’t fit into conventional monogamous pairings and your ridiculous assertions that there are statistics correlating “hook ups” with early death, is no different from the gays are immoral and disgusting brigade.

      • Ryan

        But sauna sex, hook ups etc are connected to early death. Why is it homophobic to say so?

        • Paul

          Because they aren’t.

          • Carl

            They are. Theres countless statistics. Have you seen the gay people who’ve died in saunas over the last three or four years? Perhaps you might enjoy this one from last week. Keep ignoring it though.
            http://www.pinknews.co.uk/2014/03/06/uk-crystal-meth-vet-accused-killing-man-toothbrush-extreme-sm-sex-session/

          • Paul

            People die in all sorts of places. Does that mean we should close down anywhere that someone has died? Let’s improve the nation’s health. Close down the hospitals, because people die there.
            The standard of this “debate” is moronic. Your entire argument boils down to a report that someone died in a sauna of natural causes. It’s beyond laughable. The Finns love saunas and they have one of the longest lifespans in the world.

          • Steven Gregory

            Good point. Better close down the roads, too.

          • Steven Gregory

            If there are “countless statistics,” why not cite one of those instead of an S&M druggie sex freakout murder?

            Now how many “gay people who’ve died in saunas over the last three or four years” are there?

    • Rob

      YES! THIS IS THE TRUTH.

  • JackAlison

    “here and it made the national newspapers, and we’ve got a debate going, this is exactly what I wanted.”

    What a smug lil prig…..”Im soooooooooo much bettter than everybody else…Ive moved on.” Poor guy whose married to him. lol….Still there are plenty of these canape and champagne sipping power queens as celebrities or who reside in the upper echelons of government who can tell the rest of how we should live with their expert advice.

  • masteradrian

    “Former soldier” should recognize that not all gay people are thinking like him…… He should acknowledge that haters and other misfits who oppose equality always will find something to attack gay people, regardless of “former soldiers” cleaning up house!
    Of course he is right in saying that things happen at gay saunas that should not happen, or perhaps better not should happen, but then, who is he to comment on things that yes or no happen at gay saunas? Perhaps he better start “cleaning house” in the military, I do recall vividly that soldiers from the barracks that a couple of friends lived nearby were not very well-behaving (so to speak) when they encountered a couple of young girls……….. Not going to be too graphic I can say that the soldiers were not really dressed anymore after five minutes…… and neither were girls after the soldiers were done with them. The “former soldier” should perhaps start educating his “former peers” instead of telling people about the filth in gay saunas!

  • Edgar Carpenter

    It’s amazing that men who have never been to a sauna can be so certain about what happens in saunas. The commenters here who are confusing their own lurid and fearful fantasies with the reality of sex in saunas are pretty disgusting.

    How is it possible you can be so certain that casual sex is soulless, unsatisfying and dangerous for everyone? I can assure you that it is often intimate, caring and wonderful for some.

    If you choose to believe otherwise, that’s your right – you can also believe that the moon is a radioactive aubergine and that sunlight will give you super powers, but please do consider the thought that your vivid imaginings may not actually be true in the real world.

  • Cal

    He says he has been around the block a few times. I assume this means promiscuous behaviour. The general public seems to take a dim view of perceived Gay promiscuity. Do they care whether it happens in a Gay club, the local park, a public lavatory, a truck stop, in an alleyway, swimming pool changing rooms or in a sauna? If they had to list the most distasteful I doubt that a sauna would be at the top.

    • Tiggy

      I’m more disgusted by public open air straight dogging places, especially when they take over beauty spots when it’s still daylight and people with kids are around. It’s not like they need a view to look at. Saunas sound really seedy, whatever the sexuality involved, but then I think casinos and amusement arcades are seedy too!

  • Kevin

    I think saunas are gross. But had to laugh at Wharton saying THT hands out contraceptives in them!

  • Sean in AK

    Yea, saunas are disgusting. As a 28 year old gay man, I just don’t see the point. Anyone using them is utterly pathetic and those who advocate for them are in denial of how pathetic their lives are. It’s high time our community makes the decision to turn away from places that allow men to lay dead covered in sh*t for hours. Disgraceful.

    • Paul

      As a 28 year old gay man, you are benefitting from a much greater acceptance of gay men which has happened because of gay men and others coming out and campaigning for equality. Some of those might have been to saunas. It’s a shame that you can’t show any tolerance of people who have a different opinion from you and that you are just as ignorant as people who say gay men are disgusting and live pathetic lives. Maybe you should open your mind a little and then perhaps you’d realise that people die in gay clubs, pubs and other venues. Are you suggesting they should all be closed down too?

      • Serkan M

        ooooo Trolling again Paul. Just ignore him Saun. He will get bored soon.

        • Paul

          You really need to look up the definition of troll, as you clearly don’t know what it means. Here’s a little hint for you; it does not mean someone that disagrees with you.

  • CHBrighton

    Close the gay saunas, and leave the ‘straight’ ones open? Ban gay outdoor sex and allow straight dogging areas to remain? Of course, not. Equal treatment means just that.

  • Steven Gregory

    His internalized homophobia is leaking out and he’s unable to focus on the positive and constructive efforts of gays. Did he call for Spring Break destinations or titty bars to be “cleaned up?”

    How many gay bathhouses has he been to, and how dirty are they?

    • Serkan M

      How many have you been too should be more of the question.

  • Steven Gregory

    This is the same mentality used by right wing religious nuts against sex education, birth control and contraception: exposure will increase sexual activity. Those groups favor ignorance, thinking that will defeat lustful urges.

    If he truly is concerned about sexual health, he should strip down, don a towel and embark on a tour of gay saunas to promote use of condoms and reduction of risky practices. Instead he sounds just moments away from decrying leather men and drag queens at the in Pride parades.

    • Serkan M

      I just think he has some self respect to be honest.

  • Martin

    Of course promiscuity gives gay people a bad name, promiscuity gives anyone a bad name. Saunas are places of promiscuity so there is nothing wrong with his logic. Straight people also have to rein in their sexuality and expect everyone to do the same. Sex is instinctual behaviour like aggression or hunger, it is not a universally good thing, and its expression should be restrained to some degree for society to function.
    Gay people have had to fight to be admitted the right to any sexual expression at all, but that does not mean that every sexual expression is necessarily good.
    Promiscuity is unhealthy, it spreads STDs and it is anexpression of a lacking ability to relate emotionally to partners.

    • http://www.jaffacakesandsodomy.net Paul

      As someone who is an unabashed slut yet miraculously has no STIs (condoms exist – who’da thunk it?) and manages to have a happy long-term relationship despite apparently lacking the ability to relate to people (lawl), what a load of puritan shite you’ve been fed. Just try not to regurgitate it here as it’s unpleasant for the other patrons.

  • Rich the sutHrIVer

    Some talk of being “disgusted” by sauna’s, promiscuity and sleaze. Things that disgust me are violence,injustice,poverty,fat cat bankers,hate crime,religious bigots, child abuse,racism and countless politicians. But sex-even-shock horror-casual sex just for the fun of it? Hell no. To quote Woody Allen (I know,controversial) “Sex without love is an empty experience, but, as empty experiences go, it’s one of the best.”

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