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Dolce & Gabbana and the Oppression Olympics

I am boycotting Dolce & Gabbana. A feat that is remarkably easy given my current bank balance after buying a house. Here’s hoping that H&M don’t suddenly decide that they think I’m an abomination of nature because frankly, THAT would completely fuck up my summer wardrobe.


In the week where Italian powerhouse Dolce & Gabbana blew up the Internet with their remarks about IVF, BCW navigates the Oppression Olympics.

I don’t fancy black men.

I find Asian boys far too fem for comfort.

Latino’s don’t really do it for me.

Lesbians are icky.

Bisexuals are just kidding themselves.

Trans people are usually dealing with some sort of mental illness.

Women. Eurgh.

All of these are remarks I’ve heard spoken in the past month by people that I would normally consider enlightened, evolved members of the human race.

Some were joking.

Some were not.

Where there was no knowing wink before the statement, there was generally a lack of understanding that these sweeping generalisations made those uttering them look ignorant.

I don’t like ignorant people.


Last week, Elton John started a tirade against Dolce & Gabbana calling for a boycott of their product after they stated that “the only family is a traditional one” and that the children of same-sex parents are somehow “synthetic”.

..and them gays. Both of them.

They LOVE the cock.

Now. You’d have to be ignorant not to realise why this is offensive and indeed why it is a very damaging statement to be making.

As Owen Jones so eloquently wrote in the Guardian

“The fact that Dolce and Gabbana are gay is neither here nor there: there is no shortage of examples of members of oppressed groups who have internalised the prejudice and discrimination directed against them. Their intervention helps to legitimise prejudice against gay people and their children. It helps to fuel bullying of children – whether because they are raised by same-sex parents, or because they have been conceived by IVF”.

So yes. I am boycotting Dolce & Gabbana. A feat that is remarkably easy given my current bank balance after buying a house. Here’s hoping that H&M don’t suddenly decide that they think I’m an abomination of nature because frankly, that would completely fuck up my summer wardrobe.

Discussing this issue with my rather handsome husband Joe, he brought up the fact that he gets really annoyed when people who have what the Scottish Government describe as ‘protected characteristics’ don’t have each others backs, let alone their own, and I tend to agree.

But there’s another element to it.

Of course, it seems odd that someone who had been discriminated against would do that to someone else. It makes sense. You know the hurt that being treated badly causes, so why would you do that to someone else?

What gets MY goat however, is the new currant of social commentators shitting all over well meaning people to make a point. Deliberately being recalcitrant for the sake of it.

87th Annual Oscars Red Press Room

We all know when Patricia Arquette made the clumsy backstage statement at the Oscars exactly what she meant, and now we can add Madonna to the list of prominent white, female cultural figures who the outraged public think just screamed women have it “worse” than people of colour and gay people.

In her Out Magazine interview published last week Madonna declares, “Gay rights are way more advanced than women’s rights. People are a lot more open-minded to the gay community than they are to women, period.” For women, she feels, the situation has hardly improved since 1983. “It’s moved along for the gay community, for the African-American community, but women are still just trading on their ass. To me, the last great frontier is women. Women are still the most marginalized group,” she says. “They’re still the group that people won’t let change.” To be a successful woman, she asserts, “you must fit into this box: You must behave this way, dress this way.”

That last statement brought out a million gold medalists in the Oppression Olympics.

People crying… oh thanks Madonna… of course you have it worse than me, living in your diamond house with your robot butler. You should know better. You have black children. Rocco is probably gay etc. etc.

I called a few of them on it, and to be perfectly honest a lot of them back peddled though many were adamant that she had no right to make a statement about the advancement of human rights for a culture she isn’t even part of.

It confused me a lot.

Claiming that someone calling for wage equality for women against a statement of ‘we’ve had your back, now you have ours’ is racist is quite frankly ridiculous.

Failing to realise that jump-starting a debate on the proximity of ageism to sexism can only be beneficial to all of society is small minded at best, but using that discussion to cry your own oppression is worse dilutes the message.

Surely as Nikka Costa stated in the noughties, everybody’s got their ‘something’, and the best way to advance society and evolve as a species is to have each other’s backs.

Why’s that so hard?

But, here’s the rub.

We live in a culture where we have gay homophobes, racists of every skin tone and bigots borne in every religion and as wanky as it sounds, until we learn to love ourselves, we can’t love anyone else, and…




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