The outspoken Lord Maginnis yesterday blasted both Stonewall and The Gay UK over his ‘Bigot Of The Year Award’ nomination.
Stonewall announced the nomination at the end of last week. Stonewall describes a bigot as ‘An individual who has gone out of their way to harm, hurt or snub lesbian, gay and bisexual people in the last year.’
At first the former Ulster Unionist, MP mistakenly thought that The Gay UK was nominating him for the award and blasted the LGBT daily magazine – as a ‘perverse pressure group’, ‘aggressive, perverse and corrupting influence on susceptible and vulnerable young people.’
Editor and co-founder of the UK based online magazine, in an exchange of emails, explained that The Gay UK was in fact an organisation that was reaching out to both nominated bigots and heroes for their comment – not inferring that anyone on the list was or is indeed a bigot.
“We’re absolutely outraged to be called a perversion,
‘The very idea that we are corrupting or influencing susceptible young people is perverse in itself. We are a respected organisation with a clear goal, which is to be the mouthpiece for the gay community in the UK and we take it very personally – as should every member of the LGBT community today, as this is tantamount to calling us perverts and potentially worse.’
In June 2012 the Ulster Unionist Party whip was withdrawn from Lord Maginnis by party leader Mike Nesbit over his anti-gay remarks, where Lord Maginnis likened gay marriage to bestiality on Northern Ireland’s Stephen Nolan Show. Lord Maginnis said that gay marriage was, ‘a rung on the ladder’ to ‘other deviant practices’ and ‘Will the next thing be that we legislate for some sort of bestiality?’
The Gay UK called for a public apology from the Lord last night, after it emerged that Lord Maginnis had forwarded private and legally privileged emails to members of the press.
A representative for The Gay UK said,
‘It’s disgusting that in 2012, somebody in a respected position such as a Lord can make these comments about a portion of the community that we aim to represent.
‘An attack on us, is an attack on the gay community at large. Our website is community led by contributions from lesbian and gay writers and today is a sad day.’
‘Even after we had corrected Lord Maginnis that we were not Stonewall or the organisation that were running the Heroes and Bigot award, he replied, “As I neither know you or Stonewall I don’t think it’s for me to sort out the not-so-subtle differences. If you still want a comment my initial response is adequate from my perspective.”.’
Stonewall was not immediately available for comment on Lord Maginnis’s accusation.