UKIP and the Gay Pride March (2015), by Sean Gabb

UKIP and the Gay Pride March
Sean Gabb (18th June 2015)

On the 6th June 2015, the organisers of the Gay Pride March in London announced that they had rejected an application from the UK Independence Party to take part. They had given in to a petition which called UKIP “inherently homophobic, transphobic, xenophobic, racist and misogynistic.”

Before making my statement on this ban, I will say the following:

1. I am not, nor ever have been, a member of UKIP, and I voted Conservative in last month’s general election.

2. I started denouncing the laws against all-male sex in the 1970s – that is, before many of our leading “gay rights” activists had started filling their nappies. Some of these denunciations were in writing, and enough of them survive and can be found on my website to show that I am telling the truth. I will add that saying what I said as a schoolboy and as a young man could get more than funny looks. It never did in my case, but there was always a risk, and I took that risk.

3. So far as I am concerned, the meaning of “gay rights” begins and ends with the right to do with your own as you please, and to associate as you please with other consenting adults. This means no criminal laws against all-male sex, and no discrimination by the State. It also means no special laws against all-male erotica and no special laws to protect “public decency.” Since I do not believe in general laws against adult erotica, and believe that the old laws against causing a breach of the peace are all that is needed for the regulation of public behaviour, what I mean is complete freedom of speech and a relaxed view of what should be tolerated in the streets.

4. I have no principled objection to gay marriage. I wrote in its favour in the 1980s, and still see no reason why the bundle of declarations and agreements that constitute marriage should not be available to all who want it.

Now this, broadly speaking, seems to be the position taken by my gay friends in UKIP. It seems also largely to be the position taken in public by Nigel Farage. By the standards of twenty five years ago, the UKIP line on gay issues is outrageously libertarian. Why ban its representatives from joining in a gay march?

The answer, I regret, is that the gay movement is no longer about the basic human rights recognised in the English liberal tradition. It is about sectional privilege – privilege that can only be granted and maintained by an enlarged and intrusive state. UKIP and Nigel Farage are condemned because they are against anti-discrimination laws. Their position on these is called “bigotry.”

However, part of the right of association is the right not to associate. Two men should certainly have the right to live together in matrimony. But no one should be forced to bake their wedding cake. If you are running a business, you are risking your money and your time. If you do not wish to do business with people, for whatever reason, that should be your unquestioned right. It may be unwise of you to turn away paying business. It may be small-minded of you. But that should be your right. It is a right of exactly the same kind as the right of two men to have sex with each other.

If you are a minister of religion, you should not be compelled to solemnise a gay marriage. Or, if you do solemnise a gay marriage against the rules of your denomination, you should have no right to any legal redress if you are suspended from or deprived of your position. A religion is a private organisation, formally or effectively separate from the British State. The British State has no right to interfere in its internal affairs, unless these are actively hostile to the lives, liberties or property of others.

Freedom of speech involves the right to publish and to consume erotica. It also involves the right to express disgust for the acts portrayed, and to speak ill of anyone who enjoys them. None of this involves the right to cause a breach of the peace, as traditionally known. But no one should suffer any punishment for speaking out for or against any particular sexual act or any particular lifestyle.

As an aide, let me deal with the claim that UKIP is a “racist” and a “xenophobic” organisation. I do not believe this to be true. But, if true, it is irrelevant. Disliking men whose taste is for all-male sex and disliking foreigners may be equally uncharitable. But they are logically separate. You can oppose mass-immigration on the grounds that it displaces the traditional occupiers of a territory. This has no automatic bearing on how those traditional occupiers should be allowed to behave. And the distinction is not abstract. I know identitarians who are strongly opposed to third world immigration and multiculturalism, but who are indifferent to all-male sex.

I might add that many of the newcomers are not indifferent to all-male sex, and that the areas in which they predominate can be rather unfriendly to men whose taste is for all-male sex.

Of course, Gay Pride is a private organisation, and it has the same right as a Christian baker should have not to associate with people it dislikes. But, I repeat, it is generally the case that the mainstream gay movement in this country has moved away from the liberal fundamentals that it preached from the 1950s until the 1990s. It has become an increasingly sinister interest group pushing for censorship and coerced association. When not able to use the criminal and civil laws to this effect, it has demanded and obtained equally effective administrative policies.

This change of nature is wrong in itself. It is also against the long term interests of its alleged beneficiaries. All the freedoms we presently enjoy are the fruits of the English liberal tradition. Every denial of those fruits to some lay down a precedent for their denial to others. For the past generation, the old prejudices against all-male sex have been dissolving. Who can say what the next generation will bring?


  1. All good stuff as usual from this blog.

    Also, we should not have to receive tax payer (or anyone else) financed promotion of any particular life style. No problem at all with reports or analysis, no problem with omnibus programmes but a persistent bleat about any lifestyle choice is tedious and when so focussed on a limited range of preferences it is clearly an opinionated rant – we should not have to suffer that.

    UKIP is refused access to “Universities” and to many aspects of everyday life but thank goodness it is no longer rejected by the public, most of whom now smile approvingly when we knock on doors or meet them in the pub.

    I wonder if the Gay Pride march is run by a charity – if so its registration should be cancelled forthwith.

  2. Two things about UKIP. “They” are not opposed to anti-discrimination laws as Sean suggests,as someone within UKIP proposed such that for the manifesto and was firmly sat upon by Nigel!!!! They ought to be opposed to anti-discrimination laws and should say so because if we were allowed to discriminate again against the aliens it would help stop immigration without having to rely on the “government” alone to do it.

    Second: as I say on my website ALL political parties are “the revolution against the constitution” in that they all amalgamate the government with the House of Commons, instead of keeping the two separate and the latter able to control the government. Instead all governments, by virtue of the fact that they have been given a majority by the voters are in control of the Commons. See my explanation of how the “package” nature of manifestos is a subtle totalitarian idea. So, where along the revolutionary spectrum you want to put UKIP is up to you. However, after the French Revolution you could be on the left, right or centre, but no one who a monarchist or other libertarian reactionary could participate. Once youhave voted and given a government a majority htere is nothing you cna do to control that government. Especially if th eMPs are career politicians hwos ejobs depend on toeing the line The answer i INDEPENDENTS WHO BELIEVE IN LIBERTY.

  3. “and to associate as you please with other consenting adults” Well I’m not hostile to the idea of pedophilia or pederasty — Something the gays distance themselves from; but they can’t airbrush
    the truth. Remember fears over the pardoning of homosexuals,several months back, Mentioning the homosexual code-breaker in WW2: Back then the age of consent for gays was 21, So they set
    16 as the moral compass — Anyone under that age, they’re an evil ‘pedo’ — Never mind that paedophilia is an attraction to pre-pubescent kids!

    You seem to defend the law castigating clergy, Who solemnise against the rules of his denomination, Yet Why are the bakers not held to account for refusing to serve in a public business — Where does one draw the line, Blacks? Irish? Nazis (joke)!

  4. “Who can say what the next generation will bring?”

    I think you already did: “…the mainstream gay movement…has become an increasingly sinister interest group pushing for censorship and coerced association.”

    What this “will bring” is the increasing marginalization – culturally, socially and politically – of “traditional” values, and of those who stand or speak for them.

    In the U.S., that process began to happen early in the growth and development of the movement, and it is therefore further advanced than elsewhere. For that reason, the underlying “suppression-impulse” behind the process is also is easier to notice and recognize, because its instances are both more numerous and more flagrant in their expression.

    A particularly harrowing example of suppressed dissent, of the techniques of suppression, and of the revenge exacted on its perpetrator (a professor of classics who is the adopted son of a lesbian couple!), can be found at:

  5. Maybe the present state of affairs in the gay rights movement was always the intention of people who wanted homosexual law reform. After all, the 1967 decriminalisation law didn’t in itself make any practical changes, because private acts were rarely prosecuted – a case could not by its nature be proved if the act took place in private.

  6. Gay Pride isn’t really a private organisation. In Doncaster we found that the Doncaster annual Gay Pride March was wholly funded by Public funds that had been siphoned out of various accounts to avoid any one item appearing objectionable (ie c£3,000 from Doncaster Metropolitan Borough Council funds, c£3,000 form South Yorkshire Police funds, c£3,000 from the Regional Fire Brigade funds and then c£3,000 from the Regional Development agency. The key activists also were, and no doubt still are, paid as they took money from each Gay Pride march which is funded and organised on a similar basis in every significant town and city.

  7. How about HeteroPride? If something like that wanted to organise a march or some other visible shindig, it might be instructive to see what “groups” come out in opposition to it, how they influence the Police or otherwise, and what justifications are offered..

    • If a Hetero Pride march isn’t considered a hate crime already, it soon will be. If you’re planning one, you’d better hurry.

  8. They should never have applied to take part in the first place.

    Have UKIP learnt nothing from the fake-Conservative Party? Are they really that daft to try and leap into bed with the spectrum of liberal causes like this (and liberal propaganda organisations) in order to try and “prove” to their opponents that they are “acceptable”? It is both pathetic and counter-productive.

    That they apparently applied to take part in this event just shows me how much UKIP are willing to become just another branch of the established order of things and put themselves on the platform of their opponents, which is why the Conservative Party has been so utterly useless for 60 years and how the have conceded almost every issue to the left, to the point where they uphold and promote values that they once fiercely opposed!

    Of course Gay Pride and others like them will relish in rejecting such an application. It gives them all the ingredients they need to make another song and dance about themselves and to otherwise push their agenda whilst taking easy pot-shots at UKIP.

    Giving the general scene around the likes of Gay Pride, it is hardly going to be the hotbed of UKIP recruitment potential – and they are but a fraction of the overall population who UKIP would not even need in order to win an election.

    But of course, it is all about the bigger image and them being seen to be ‘right on’ and “tolerant” and “open minded” to their critics…. they applied to play the game and then they were kicked to the kerb by those who would never accept them under any circumstances anyway.

  9. CB is right. It should be evident to those who follow major ideological developments within self-proclaimed LGBT+ political groups—the groups which organise and lead these parades—that the political programme underlying this movement is left-wing in nature, which is why its leaders (and many of its supports) do not identify with non-conformist homosexuals simply by virtue of their sexual conduct. I don’t think David Starkey would be embraced with open arms at an event like this, for example, but perhaps I am wrong.

    The growth of authoritarian intersectionalism in sexual identity politics, which is implied in the “LGBT” tag itself (it is concerned with far more than just the rights of homosexuals), has been leading to the exclusion of veteran activists from university campuses and political conferences more and more in recent years. The idea that UKIP would be accepted at face value, despite the frequent anti-UKIP articles on popular gay websites like Pink News, is absurd in a time where political lesbians like Julie Bindel and Sheila Jeffreys are being “no platformed” by the NUS and having women-only feminist conferences shut down at Conway Hall, of all places. The current wave of feminism and LGBT are not synonymous, but both factions increasingly stress the importance of intersectionality and view themselves as part of the alleged greater struggle against “kyriarchy”—even at the expense of feminists who are unconvinced by the claims of transgender women, or homosexuals who do not think we should have an open door policy for anyone claiming asylum from far-off lands.

    I’m sure the members of UKIP who wish to attend this parade are sincere, but they must be naive if they expect acceptance.

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