Wednesday, 1 July 2009

The end of the world is nigh! Mail 'reports' on girls kissing each other

What is most disturbing aspect of modern life to the average Daily Mail reading parent, worried about their kids? Knife crime? Teenage pregnancy? Drugs? Not doing well at school? Struggling to find a job in a recession hit job market?

No, none of these things. Apparently, it's girls kissing each other. This is, the Mail tells us, a:

teenage trend that will disturb every parent.

This unbelievable homophobic rant is written by Penny Marshall under the guise of an 'investigation' into the 'phenomenon' of girls kissing other girls. And to make it worse, they're girls from

smart homes with professional parents, are well-spoken and attend a well-respected Inner London day school.

In other words - children like the average Mail reader's.

It is, she says, 'intriguing and disturbing'. The idea that the Mail (editor: male, 61) finds teenage girls as young as 14 kissing each other 'intriguing' is quite disturbing. Yet, the Mail goes into detail about various examples, but - of course - only so the readers can be appalled by all the girl-on-girl action.

Marshall blames various pop stars and celebrities - Katy Perry for I Kissed a Girl, Madonna and Britney, Linday Lohan and Samantha Ronson - for making teenagers sexually confused. 'That's why this celebrity fad is so insidious,' she roars. Nothing like as insidious or confusing as, maybe, suggesting there is something inherently corrupting and wrong about lesbianism.

Lesbianism which, she seems to suggest, didn't even exist before Madonna kissed Britney in 2003.

She goes into greater criticism of Perry's song which caused 'massive offence' and cites as her evidence:

Middle American commentators accused her of promoting lesbianism. One church notice board carried the slogan: 'I kissed a girl - and went straight to hell.' Internet message boards in the U.S. were overloaded as mothers panicked about their daughters' slumber parties turning into vast, experimental orgies.

A pop tune about a same-sex kissing upsets Middle American church goers? Hardly conclusive proof of 'massive offence'...

Marshall quotes several teenagers who have seen or done these kisses, and they seem far more laid-back and rational than she does.

'There is no harm done, no harm meant,' says one.

'I'm absolutely sure they wouldn't take it any further, and it is embarrassing to watch, but these days it's happening more and more. It's clear that some girls now feel it is OK to do,'
adds another.

'It's really not such a big deal,' says 'Jennifer, a former private schoolgirl and recent university graduate,' who - having been to private school - clearly should know better.

And Marshall knows best. She ends with a dire warning that while girls may think it is:

terribly grown-up and cool, the reality is that such behaviour can compromise both their dignity and self-respect.

But why? It can't be any more compromising to a person's dignity and self-respect than writing for the Mail. She seems to believe that what some teenage girls may do in private (most of them say they were at private parties) is shocking 'public sexual experimentation' and that it is inherently 'disturbing' - a word she uses repeatedly.

It's an article full of really unpleasant anti-gay sentiment, and as a 'scare' story it's dreadfully thin. Teenagers have always been - will always be - involved in sexual and other types of experimentation. Surely a kiss between two consenting teens of whatever sex is far from the worst thing they could be experimenting with?

Still, Mail reader Jane Berwick from London is suitably outraged. Her comment (10.21) is:

We need a war to get us back on track.

About which no further comment needs to be made.

1 comment:

Thanks for taking the time to leave a comment.

Comments are moderated - generally to filter out spam and comments wishing death on people - but other messages will be approved as quickly as possible.