Trigger warnings: child abuse, homophobia.
For as long as I've had this blog I've tried to keep it conservative. I'm not a person who angers easy and my blog on the whole has reflected that. My fleeting anger at stuff I see online is just that, fleeting. It's never around for long enough to sit down and write about it. This has some advantages but it also has some disadvantages. For instance my Funeral For A Friend post had so much passion in it I almost didn't post it, worried what people might think. I'm so glad I did and I felt very proud of that post as a result. This is about something very different, today I saw something that made me very angry.
Let's just start off by saying that I don't like Prez Hilton. No I didn't watch Big Brother and I know there was some controversy over it but I have no clue what it was about, nor do I have any desire to find out. I just have no interest in celebrities and I hate people who make targets out of others and that's what his 'blog' is all about from what I can tell. I don't like him, and yet today I find myself defending him. However today he posted a picture of himself and his son in the bath and the internet blew up.
I'm including the image just so you can see exactly what the fuss is all about. To me this image is innocent. He was in the bath with his child, so what? Are people not allowed to be naked near each other now? Not even your own offspring? People have called him a child abuser for this (seriously WTF). The problem with statements like that is not only are they ridiculous but they hurt real incidents of child abuse by just applying it as a blanket over everything. The UK is now under this media induced fear where we assume everyone is a child molester, of course you should always protect your family but this has gone too far. I think the reason this photo has been singled out is because of two reasons. The sexualisation of children and homophobia.
Let's start with that sticky first point shall we. Over recent years the world has intrinsically linked the human body purely with sexuality, and increasingly we are doing this with children. Don't let your children be naked ever, don't let anyone see them in anyway that can be deemed inappropriate, or this is the conclusin people will jump too. Children aren't doing anything wrong, but if you are projecting that onto a child, then you are. This two year old isn't thinking twice about being naked with his father and I'm sure Prez isn't either. It's a bonding experience at playtime. Prez isn't showing any of his son in this pic other than his head, so where is the sexuality in here? It's in your head, and you are pushing it onto the innocent. Honestly, it's shameful. Prez has stated he was wearing a swimsuit, but should it matter? Would we look at it the same if it was a mother and son?
I think the second thing that has fueled this more than it normally would have is a dollop of good old fashioned homophobia. Unfortunately gay men are often linked in the minds of the ignorant with perversion and at worst, child molestation. That's the reason 'they' can't teach our children or be left alone with them. This srange thought that the ony thing stopping men, especially homosexual men, from molesting a child is the lack of opertunity. It's a lie and a harmful one, and I have no doubt that Prez's sexuality is fuelling this at least in part.
I don't really know how to end this, I don't have children and no doubt people will think that I therefore don't have a right to comment on it. But sometimes I think the world is going backwards. If people stopped trying to sexualise everything and everyone, maybe the world would be just a little better.