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National Coming Out Day

Tomorrow (11th October) is (Inter-)National Coming Out Day*.

I started coming out on 12th October 2000 at the start of my second year of Sixth Form when I was 17. I had been wanting to tell people for a long time and finding excuses not to (I've mentioned it before, but "it's raining" was definitely my favourite). Unfortunately in 2000 I only realised, too late, after school on the 11th that it was National Coming Out Day I vowed to come out the next day.

Where's the excitement about the Same Sex Marriage announcement?

Last night rumours were circulating that the government was about to make a big announcement on same sex marriage. This morning I noticed a tweet from @EvanHD:

Observing from abroad, slightly surprised at how unexcited Twitter is at the impending announcement of gay marriage coming to the UK

The first thing that comes to mind is because, actually, this is not an announcement about a step forward in same sex marriage... this is an announcement about a consultation in six months time.

Who is Google to tell me who I am?

I am penwing.

I am also Alex Lambert.

Reluctantly, I am Mr A M Lambert.

Professionally, I am Alex Lambert, Advisor.

In shorthand, I am AML.

I am all of these people. I use all of these names. All of these people are me. Whether I like it or not.

The point is, there are lots of identities I use - the list above is not exhaustive or static. All of them interact with, inform and conflict with each other. The biggest conflicts being between penwing and Alex Lambert - the flirting curtailed by fear, the desire to change the world dampened by the fear of failure.

Recent Riots

This is the main part of my letter to my MP about the riots and the political response. There have been some amazing blog posts written about these incident (see lower down) and I wish I had the style and intelligence they show but in the mean time, I can offer this:

EHRC Facade - Part III

Well, I'm writing back to my MP with just a brief paragraph as below.

Equality and Human Rights Commission facade part II

A few weeks ago, those crazy folks over at the Equality and Human Rights Commission - the uber body created by the Equality Act to oversee all different branches of equality and Human Rights - issued a press release advising they wished to intervene in four cases (well, four cases, joined into two for deliberation) before the European Court of Human Rights.

2nd Liverpool Pride - next weekend

Next weekend is Liverpool Pride and I was going to write an entry about how important I think it is for Liverpool and why I would be going again. Then I realised I already did that - after last year's event:

How the EDL fucked up my night...

Without doing anything that is or should be illegal, the EDL managed to completely fuck up my night.

I had just moved further to the back of the crowd at Warrington Music Festival to try and escape the smoking (when are we going to ban that, really!) and Bill Davro was starting his set when I suddenly noticed, in front of me, four people with black tops on and a red cross with "English Defence League - Widnes Division".

For those that don't know, the EDL is a political front for violent fascist thugs.

And the facade is over

It was inevitable that the conflict between 'religious freedom' and protection for LGBT/Queer equality inherent in the Equality and Human Rights Commission's remit would rear its head. And how it has.

Electoral Reform

So, we lost the AV referrendum. I say "we" as if I played a big part in pushing the #Yes2AV message - I didn't. AV is a poor compromise on electoral reform that I struggled to get excited over and I didn't want my negativity detracting from the campaign because however small a step it would be, it would still have been a good step. First Past the (imaginary, flexible) Post is a spectacularly bad system and we do deserve better, but AV maintains many of the same flaws and doesn't actually meet some of the criteria it claims to.