Showing posts with label morality. Show all posts
Showing posts with label morality. Show all posts

Saturday, September 03, 2011

The Importance of Pseudonyms

This little furore, where a teacher was suspended and reinstated after being found out as a part-time stripper, reminded me of the importance of pseudonyms. The thrust of his defence is correct (apart from the facebook part—teachers shouldn’t really friend pupils for good, professional reasons), but even in The Guardian, a paper so wet it would make your fish’n’chips soggy if you wrapped them in it, there were plenty of comments along the lines of, “I wouldn’t want you teaching my child.” Presumably these would be the same people who, a decade or so ago, were totally against openly homosexual teachers working in the classroom for fear they might “infect” their cherished offspring.

The other type of comment—“Well, he’s a male stripper, that’s not as bad as…”—completely misses the point. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it a million times again: What consenting adults get up to in their own time is their own bloody business. Would it matter if a teacher, a good teacher, worked—legally—as an escort after hours, or liked to frequent fetish clubs and have their arse paddled red? Should it? Obviously, it would be a problem if that teacher abused their position to tout for business amongst pupils/parents, or turned up too tired to do their job properly, but most people can and do successfully partition their public and private lives. Sadly, a lot of people are too judgmental, resulting in this kind of silliness.

I’m not ashamed of what I write about, but I’m realistic. I don’t and probably won’t ever be able to make full-time living from my writing. I don’t want to find myself blacklisted from future employment prospects because a recruiter googled my name and found out I wrote some bizarre, creepy porn stories a decade ago.

While future employment prospects are a concern for me, it pales into insignificance when compared to people in other parts of the world, where they face imprisonment—or even death—for having incompatible views, beliefs or sexual orientation.

So to facebook, google+ and the rest—first guarantee me a world where I won’t be killed, imprisoned, ostracised, or have my current and future livelihood damaged for what I write/post, and then I might give you my real name.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Throwing Rocks at People on High Horses

Two articles caught my attention in the news today.

The first is about the odious piece of anti-homosexuality legislation being debated in the Ugandan parliament.

The second is about the horrendous murders of sex workers happening out in Long Island. It’s also a surprisingly progressive piece on prostitution from The Guardian (which is odd considering The Guardian is one of the UK’s more progressive newspapers). Obviously the title is a little too sensationalist. Anti-prostitution attitudes didn’t kill those girls, a psychopath did, but it made his (assuming it is a he) work a lot easier. Same as it always does.

Sex workers have always been vulnerable. And always will be while people continue to sit on their moral high horses and try to tell the rest of the world how they should live their lives.

I wonder what it is about our species that makes us feel the need to pry into and interfere with other people’s private behaviour, even when it doesn’t affect us personally in the slightest. It seems simple to me. What happens between consenting adults behind closed doors is their own business. To anyone else: Butt out. It doesn’t concern you. Your opinions, your thoughts and especially your morality are not asked for or welcome.