Tom Daley and Society Diving to New Depths

slide_271813_1921874_free

British diver Tom Daley – dating a guy but “still fancies women.” | Image: Clive Ross/Getty.

Out celebrities are symbols as much as they are people. And in a year in which sports culture and LGBT athletes have received unprecedented attention both for breakthroughs and barriers, Olympic diver Tom Daley is well on his way to becoming the next out icon. There’s just the matter of him defying any and all attempts to make it easy to say what and who he is.

Since Daley’s video announcement went live, media outlets, LGBT sites among them, have said that he’s gay or in a gay relationship, called him bisexual or insisted that he’s not, while others have simply said he’s “come out” and left readers to arrive at their own conclusions. All this despite the fact that Daley himself didn’t use the words “gay” or “bisexual” at all. Rather, he shared that, since last spring, he’s been dating a guy even though he “still fancies women.”
Tom Daley Has Found A New Way Out.

This is an excellent piece from Saeed Jones on BuzzFeed. I believe that it’s a valid point that some people are completely uncomfortable with or do not identify as “gay” or “bisexual” or any other term. We are, I think, at an interesting point in our sociological evolution where traditional definitions of sexuality are beginning — just beginning — to fall away. An awakening of the sexual omnivore? Why not?

And, why do we have to label anything? I mean, if we really believe the sound bite mantra “love is love” then why do we insist on the importance of labeling it? Why does Daley have to be gay or bi? Why can’t he just be in love with another human being?

Also, the gossipy gay media is all over the fact that his alleged — emphasis on alleged — boyfriend is Oscar-winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black who is — gasp — 20 years his senior. Now, Black, whose talent is quite a bit more than the hack-level assigned to him by the bitchy postings all over the rainbow colored portions of the Innerwebs, does have a pretty well documented history of dating younger men. A “chicken queen,” we would have called him back in the olde timey days*.

So?

When an older straight man starts going out with a significantly younger woman, she’s seen as a “trophy” and all of his straight golfing buddies wink and nod and slap his back in the locker room. “He’s still got it,” they’ll say. “Ol’ Harold’s always had a way with the ladies!”

It’s much the same when an older gay man begins to see a younger man, but it’s somehow scandalous when it’s the younger man bragging about the older man. Suddenly the older man is the aggressive one, taking advantage of the younger. It’s a lot of shite.

Love is love, right? Right?

My advice to Tom Daley — since, you know, he’s calling me all the time asking — is this: love whomever the fuck you want and if someone doesn’t like it, they can get stuffed.

*By the way, in spite of some definitions developed by unlettered rubes out there, “chicken queen” is not synonymous with pedophile. A pedo is something entirely different.

Continuing to Watch the Glenn Greenwald Saga Play Out

In one sense Glenn Greenwald’s being gay has nothing to do with the work he’s done as a journalist and commentator, including the revelations of government surveillance he’s helped bring to light in recent months. On the other hand, as he’s stated himself, growing up gay has given him a keen awareness of injustice, and certainly that’s true with regard to a government collecting personal information about its citizens. More than that, Glenn’s being gay seems to have been used against him in recent months.

via Targeting Glenn Greenwald’s Partner Is an Attack on Every One of Us | Michelangelo Signorile.

From Mike Signorile’s column on Huffington Post. It’s a good read. Read it.

Also read this from Alan Rusbridger, the editor of the Guardian, the liberalish British newspaper that the American Greenwald writes for.

Finally, look at the New York Times‘ recent coverage.

A White House spokesman, Josh Earnest, told reporters Monday that the British government had given the United States notice that it intended to detain Mr. Miranda when his plane landed, but that there had been no American request to do so.

That’s from the Times. And are we expected to believe that? If anyone does, I have a lovely piece of swampland in the desert Southwest to sell you.

greenwald_CR

Glenn Greenwald (l) and his partner David Michael Miranda. A Brazilian national, Miranda was detained in transit at Heathrow Airport. Greenwald has written extensively on the Edward Snowden leaks case. |Image: The Spectator.

And finally, this long cut is from the Spectator — the Spectator, that bastion of conservative British thought:

Always remember mornings like these, the next time police officers and politicians demand more powers to protect us from terrorism. They always sound so reasonable and so concerned for our welfare when they do. For who wants to be blown apart?

But the state said its new powers to intercept communications would be used against terrorists. They ended up using them against fly tippers. Now the police are using the Terrorism Act against the partner of a journalist who is publishing stories the British and American governments would rather keep quiet.

The detention of David Miranda at Heathrow is a clarifying moment that reveals how far Britain has changed for the worse. Nearly everyone suspects the Met held Miranda on trumped up charges because the police, at the behest of the Americans, wanted to intimidate Miranda’s partner Glenn Greenwald, the conduit of Edward Snowden’s revelations, and find out whether more embarrassing information is on Greenwald’s laptop.

These are scary times for those of us who have been increasingly uncomfortable watching the inherent (or so we thought) protections of the Fourth Estate erode in recent years. The most troubling part for me is that it’s happening in the Obama Administration. As a friend of mine cheekily wrote on my Facebook yesterday, “You thought you elected Obama and then got Dick Cheney.” I don’t like the unsettling truth underpinning that reply.

Greenwald and Miranda live primarily in Brazil because, until a few weeks ago, DOMA prevented Greenwald from sponsoring Miranda for a green card. Given what’s happened in the last few days, maybe it worked out for the best.

P.S. — In tagging this story, I entered “NSA” and the helpful spelling wizard came up with “insanity.” Yep, that’s right, too!