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This is why straight people shouldn’t sing Fairytale of New York

Josh Jackman November 20, 2018
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A tweet about "Fairytale of New York" set against a group of friends

"Fairytale of New York" seems to encourage straight people to scream "faggot" (pexels)

A viral tweet has shown exactly why it’s problematic for straight people to sing “Fairytale of New York”, despite all protestations.

Twitter user Sam Pearson captured a popular response to the song by Kirsty MacColl and The Pogues, which infamously contains the line: “You scumbag, you maggot, you cheap lousy faggot” among the insults the lovers toss back and forth at each other.

Twisting the “Don’t Say It” meme to suit his purposes, he wrote: “*Fairytale of New York plays*” before imagining “The Straights” thinking to themselves: “We get to say it!”

Tweet about Fairytale of New York and straight people's enthusiasm for saying "faggot"
“You cheap lousy FAGGOT :)” (greeneggs_/twitter)

They repeat this thought six more times, before singing: “You cheap lousy FAGGOT :).”

The post has proved popular, attracting more than 15,000 retweets and likes as well as a host of enthusiastic, like-minded responses about how “Fairytale of New York” gives straight people the chance to yell an anti-gay slur.

One person commented: “Yes! I hate that f**king song and red-faced pissed up lads at the works Christmas do belting that bit out have a great deal to do with it.”

A post on Twitter agreeing with the original tweet about "Fairytale of New York"
“I hate that f**king song and red-faced pissed up lads at the works Christmas do belting that bit out” (redrichie/twitter)

And another tweeted: “Hey man! Not all straights are like that! Why ya gotta offend a whole sexuality!” before pausing and adding: “Oh s**t wait.”

“Straight people use the f slur singing to fairytale of new york and it ruins the whole time for me!!!!”

— @nebulastucky

Others have also tweeted about their discomfort at the extent to which people from outside the LGBT+ community enjoy saying the word “faggot,” with one person writing: “straight people REALLY love saying faggot in fairytale of New York.”

Another tweeter said they “lowkey hate christmas time bc every year i have to experience straight people (read: my dad) use the f slur singing to fairytale of new york and it ruins the whole time for me!!!! please stop using that word!!!!!!”

Tweet pleading with straight people to stop singing "faggot"
“Please stop using that word!!!!!!” wrote this tweeter about “faggot” (nebulastucky/twitter)

A different user responded: “I really dont understand why they wanna say it so bad????” which is an excellent question.

Why is “Fairytale of New York” problematic?

The Christmas favourite, which blares out from every public speaker in existence around the festive period, has been controversial ever since the mainstream was introduced to the idea that screaming “faggot” might be unacceptable.

Responding to backlash all the way back in 2007, BBC Radio 1 opted to bleep the offending word “because some members of the audience might find it offensive.”

Kirsty MacColl and The Pogues singing "Fairytale of New York"
The BBC bleeped “faggot” out of “Fairytale of New York” in 2007, before backtracking (BBC)

The broadcaster quickly reversed this decision after it prompted outrage, with a representative for The Pogues saying that the track “goes with Christmas like the Queen’s speech and mince pies, and all of a sudden it’s offensive.”

It’s safe to say that people had already been offended by the 1987 song, which was released against a cultural backdrop of the Reagan administration staying silent and unmoving as “gay cancer”—later identified as AIDS—claimed thousands of innocent lives.

Even MacColl became uncomfortable using the word within a few years of the song’s release, substituting “you’re cheap and you’re haggard” for “you cheap lousy faggot” during live performances, including her appearance on Top of the Pops in 1992.

Related topics: Christmas, don't say it, entertainment, Fairytale of New York, kirsty maccoll, meme, Music, the pogues, Twitter, UK, viral

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