Not my intention to offend, says artist about Disney gay kiss

AN ARTIST who displayed in public drawings of same-sex kissing between Disney characters said she never intended to offend anyone.

Artist Sian Jones has defended her decision to include pictures of same-sex characters from Disney films kissing as part of her contribution to the Arts Commission's Arts Sunday event. (Picture by Steve Sarre, 1253716)
Artist Sian Jones has defended her decision to include pictures of same-sex characters from Disney films kissing as part of her contribution to the Arts Commission's Arts Sunday event. (Picture by Steve Sarre, 1253716)

AN ARTIST who displayed in public drawings of same-sex kissing between Disney characters said she never intended to offend anyone.

Sian Jones, 25, has been criticised after she displayed the drawings at a Guernsey Arts Commission event on Sunday.

One of the drawings, A Whole New World, depicted Aladdin and Eric, from the Little Mermaid, kissing,

But Miss Jones has defended her decision to show the images.

'I remember learning at university that art should be about making people question their views and react, so in those terms it was a success.'

Comments for: "Not my intention to offend, says artist about Disney gay kiss"

Calvin

Criticism of this artwork is just another example of how Guernsey is a backward, xenophobic, homophobic island that needs to get with the times.

Terry Langlois

just because some backward, homophobic people criticise the art does not mean that they represent the whole island.

we are not an island with only one viewpoint. those with extreme or reactionary views are usually the most vocal

Dani

If you have a problem with this your homophobic.

Unless kissing offends you?

Not offensive at all. I think its sad this kind of thing cause "upset".

markB

Dani... I personally cringe when I see 2 men kissing, So does that make me Homophobic and If so should I see a doctor about it?

Sarah

Yes it does, maybe a psychiatrist would help?

Sian Jones

Good one Sarah!

Alex M

What rot!

Cringing when you see two men kiss doesn't make anyone homophobic, and believing that it does makes you bigotted. Everyone is entitled to their own views, the true test of how "enlightened" one is, is how they respond to the views others have that they might not share. And on that score your slating of Mark shows that you aren't quite as enlightened as you might think.

markB

Mmm!! You’ve got me worried now; I have nothing against gay men or women In fact seeing two women kissing has a pleasing effect on me

But two men?....Nope. makes me shiver just thinking about it.

Sian Jones

Can I just ask why it makes you cringe? Just because I'm interested to know that's all?

bcb

No it does not and no need to see a doctor.

chris

markB, you and me are now in the minority. The general moral decline continues at a quickening pace..

#

Aci resident

I can see how it might offend children as it could be there faviourte characters but good imagination and interesting concept to use. :)

Terry Langlois

surely it would only offend children if they have acquired homophobic prejudices?

aci resident

I'm talking about 5 years and that. wouldnt it be hard to explain to them why little mermaid is kissing jasmine when they ask? I am sure older children know what goes in this world.

Dani

They are kissing because that lady loves the other lady. Not that hard and not a big deal.

aci resident

i should have actually said upset not offend. just reading my comment back

aci resident

You have to admit you have got a good debate going on here Sian. lol. like i said before good imagination of getting the message across. :)

Kind Maker

Erm, well its total rubbish for a start (my opinion, everyone has one), secondly; why do we need to (excuse the pun) ram alternative lifestyle down each other’s throats?

If you want to be Gay then fine, crack on. Whilst the rest of the conventional community just wish to get on and bring up a balanced family in the right environment.

Please don’t start a witch hunt of heterosexuals.

Terry Langlois

there is no witchhunt of heterosexuals. whoever indicated there was?

the above posts do, however, indicate a reaction against homophobes.

I don't think anyone is ramming anything down anyone's throat. It is art. It meant to make you stop and think. If you don't personally like it (whether the art or the thoughts which flow from it) just move on.

Rich

Agree totally, just let kids be kids again...and let parents do they job in explaining birds and bees, if they can be bothered.

Don't remember those relationships in the films.

Also they are pretty rubbish tbh

PLP

To be fair Rich I don't think the artist had sex education in mind when she painted them - and I can't for the life of me see what any child will see that will give them any preconceptions about sex or sexuality.

Hayley

If it is so rubbish why are you even wasting your time commenting on the image! I think this is a great angle which I haven't seen done before. I love Disney and know the story lines are not related to this, I find this artists work refreshing. I love her work and she has similar style in all pieces. Sian I congratulate you on this and I do respect everyone's views... but I do not respect meaningless rude comments such as yourself Richard and Chris ...... I am glad that there are not many people like you as otherwise looking at your remarks how would the world tick by if everyone was so ridiculous and didn't notice that homosexuality is not a new thing! It's the paper who I imagine contacted Sian, let the artist keep her confidence and keep doing great art work, everyone has the freedom to express themselves.

James

No one is ramming an alternative lifestyle down your throat. If you saw a gay couple kissing would you consider that ramming it down your throat? This is just a piece of art depicting something which actually happens all over the world and is perfectly natural.

"If you want to be Gay" - You're implying here that being gay is a choice? I'm gay and I don't remember ever choosing that lifestyle. Just as you never chose to be heterosexual.

Balanced family in the right environment? Wake up! There is not one person on the planet who grew up with a perfectly balanced family in a perfect environment.

Sian Jones

Excellent comment James! I completely agree!

King Maker

Here we go - exactly my point - its all about you!

Sian Jones

Sorry should I just jump on my broomstick?

It's not all about me King Maker, it is about homosexuality and views society hold on it as a whole.

James

According to your previous comment, everyone is entitled to an opinion. Is Sian not allowed hers?

Sam

Sian Jones

Everyone is entitled to their own view on the subject that doesn't make either side right or wrong. I live my life my way, you live yours, your way.

The same with the opinions on the painting.

Calling either side names, just becaose they express opinions is half the cause of all the problems.

Sian Jones

If you are referring to my use of King Maker, that was because of their name on here.. other than that I can't see any name calling?

chris

James

You say you had no choice to be a homosexual. Does this mean you see homosexuality as an illness?

If so maybe modern medecine can cure you ?

Meant as a question not a criticism.

CJS

What a ridiculous question to even ask! Can modern medicine cure heterosexuality? Why would he even want to be cured? The only reason homosexuality is difficult for the individual is because there are ignorant people who discriminate against homosexuals because their behaviour is outside of the impalpable boundaries that you call "normal"!

Chris

CJS

But heterosexuality is the normal state so it doesn't need 'curing'. If as you suggest homosexuality is normal then how would life evolve?

It takes heteros to breed. If everyone was homosexual the human race would die out.

I believe the difficulty is with homosexuals not us heteros. Like it or not we are the 'norm'.

I have nothing against homosexuals as long at they don't try and insist it is normal and thrust it down my throat. Live and let live, do what you want as long as it doesn't affect me.

Abi

Well, If you're the 'norm', I'm not in the least bit concerned about you 'normal' folk considering me to be

abnormal.

We differ in many areas other than sexuality, I'm glad to say.

Adam Clayton

PErhaps I've misunderstood, but I see a contradiction between saying that it is fine to be gay, but that images of gay love need not be displayed. Images of heterosexual kisses abound, yet a pair of paintings depict homosexual kisses and are deemed to be 'ramming alternative lifestyle down' people's throats.

As for your point regarding community: How about gay couples who want to, as you say, 'bring up a balanced family in the right environment'?

King Maker

sigh,... lets all hold hands and skip down the high street shall we!

sarah dillon

errrr no, coz people like you would get offended lol

Terry Langlois

oh dear, you still don't get it do you?

no-one is trying to change the way you live your life

Will

I totally agree Adam, we have sex forced upon near enough everyday, newspaper, magazine the internet! And as far as i am aware no one i know in the gay community has a problem seeing it, its just want sells!! but the second somethin of a homosexual nature shows up in the news etc, everyone seems to have a problem with! If u dont like it then fair enough but dont make it everyone else problem!

As for 'King Maker' i think u need to wake up to the real world, this is 2012 not the 1950's!

Sian Jones

Exactly Will!

jack sprat

Don't play dumb, Adam. However one feels about Sian's images, that her intent is political is made manifest by her choice of subjects. NOT two pair of gays, known or anonymous, but two pair of CHILDREN's characters. As to the artist's motive in choosing her subjects, that would be provocation.

Now, one of the things one must expect when one is deliberately, if only figuratively, poking one's fingers in people's eyes, is that said people might take exception. Having chosen to do so, deal with the consequences.

Now, even my 80-yrs old, sexually conservative father has never had any problem with lesbianism. (Nor is his interest prurient; this is a man who finds the idea of the 1960s version of Playboy magazine to be mildly distasteful.) Yet, he very much feels differently about gay men.

Does he feel somehow threatened? I don't believe this to be the case. In fact, I recently found out that he and I share a similar understanding of a manifest difference in conduct that characterizes too large a proportion of gay men. He's a longtime traveler to the Florida Keys and has gotten to know many of the locals. It seems it's not exactly a family safe environment any more, due to the frequency with which gay men can be found copulating in the open. I've a similar knowledge about the ocean-side park in San Francisco.

Now, this sort of thing, if news reports are accurate, has become distressingly common in Britain. Personally, I think that such behavior merits the breaking out of water cannon.

Perhaps this is what some here regard as "ramming an alternative lifestyle down (their) throats." Sometimes, the mote really IS in the other fellow's eye.

jack sprat

I failed to make clear in my last post that "this sort of thing...has become distressingly common in Britain" AMONG HETEROSEXUALS (as well??)

Visitors to these shores would be well advised to refrain from such behavior, as some venues WILL prosecute, particularly upon complaint. Should they choose to do so, they can charge one with a felony sex crime. You'll never again be permitted entry to the U.S., which could prove awkward in some professions.

Sarah

I agree. I also think kissing between heterosexual couples should be banned and no images of this shown in public.

James

A little extreme Sarah... Why don't we just ban human contact all together? :/

Sarah

Good idea. I don't want my children seeing that kind of pornography.

Billythefish

Hang on. Let me put a different perspective on this. Firstly for the avoidance of doubt, they don't bother me and I don't consider myself homophobic. I have quite a few gay mates, and hope they'd say the same.

BUT... I feel that attempts have already been made to quash any debate by people like Dani and Calvin screaming "homophobic" already!

A quick search on google can reveal all sorts of erotic art, and not just modern - right back to the Romans who were dirty sods! But that doesn't mean I would like to see them in a display that my children might see!

On another point, it's interesting what the artist said about how she learned that art should be about making people react and question their views. I think art should make me go "oooo, that's nice" - I've never quite got the point of carved up cows and messy tents with the names of my conquests on them.... hehe

Terry Langlois

But this is not erotic art. If it was a picture of Beauty kissing the Beast then no one would have said anything.

It is not the act of kissing which has offended someone, it is the fact that it is two male characters.

So the only reason to "protect" children from this image is if you think that children should grow up thinking that homosexuality is a threat. If children can see an image of a man and a woman kissing, why not two men? Frankly, children are most likely to just move on or to accept it as nothing shocking, unlike those "adults" with prejudices about the mere existence of other peoples' lifestyles.

And yes, art can just be pretty, but it is often better if it makes you think a bit as well. Sort of the difference between watching TOWIE and Panorama.

Dani

Well said Terry

Sian Jones

I agree Dani, this is spot on!

jack sprat

Not quite, Terry. It's the expropriation of children's characters to make a deliberate political point that jangles. Just as several black politicians in Chicago once tore down a public exhibit in their town of the late Mayor Harold Washington in after-midnight drag. Choosing the first black Mayor of a great American city was calculated to offend. It got its reaction. Personally, I rather regretted that they couldn't express themselves upon the "artist's" own body. Just as I still daydream about drowning Jose Serrano in his "Piss Christ".

Provocation begets reaction. Don't play innocent when you get one which you do not like.

The Balls

I have to say as UK & local artist, illustrator and designer that viewing art in the confines of 'ooo thats nice' is like appreciating one facet of of a brilliant cut diamond, a diamond that - in theory - has no end of facets.

Art is the ultimate expressor, contemplator and communicator.

In a perfect world art should be totally and utterly free to engage with every single one of us. It's hard to apply a 'one-rule-fits-all' to different types; in some few cases, because of practicalities, the freedom of exposure and the impact has to be considered in regards to Children and any distress that may be a sensitive issue - although one could argue that the truth of the art in it's self could lead to healing and overcoming of that sensitive issue even though it appears distasteful at first.

Both hetrosexual and homosexual parties need to be careful not to be over-defensive:

Hetrosexuals have to understand that just like other creatives; homosexuals need to express and convey. Homosexuals need to understand that same sex displays of affection will 'naturally' cause discomfort/confusion to young children and to bear this in mind when considering places where the parents have no way of making a choice to let their children view the work or not.

At the end of the day there are sensible and intelligent ways to explain and help children accept that different gender sexual orientations happen with no real fuss. Guernsey has to open and evolve it's approach to art a fair bit more - if it does the artistic potential the islands have are limitless. The Arts Sunday event was a big positive encouraging move towards this direction.

jack sprat

"Both hetrosexual and homosexual parties need to be careful not to be over-defensive..."

When art is privately displayed, fair point. When it is publicly displayed, the rules of the Commons are then appropriately invoked. (These differ in time and place, or course.)

This puts me in mind of an so-called "installation" which occurred at one of the NYC museums--the MoMA, I believe--some years back. A woman was posing as a statue within a roped off area right next to a long line within the facility. Out of the blue, the patrons, of all ages, were confronted with a a man leaving the line to violently strip and then literally rape said woman, who played things up rather histrionically.

Apparently, they were all locals, as NO ONE came to her aid, even though most later admitted that they either didn't even consider the possibility that it was staged or weren't sure.

Now, if I and my mates had been there, that man very likely might have been beaten to death before security would have been able to intervene. What's more, if they had done so, then we would have taken some of their more prized possessions in recompense, I assure you, even if we had to burn the place down in order to get ours.

There is a certain type of human being who regards such things as appropriate. Myself, I'm the sort of fellow who regards such human beings as themselves inappropriate. In their entirety and on balance. Keep it in mind.

jack sprat

I meant to add that your admonition to others that they not be "over-defensive" can fairly be turned back on the artist. Don't be over-OFFENSIVE, lest you get a reaction with which you may not be prepared to deal.

mrspinthepantry

Smooches MWAH!

Since when is kissing offensive?

Who are these people that get 'offended' by everything?

jack sprat

I feel the same way when black people get all up in arms over mere words like "pickaninny" and gay people get all apoplectic over the use of the words "queer" and "fag". Nonetheless, I would be perfectly prepared to do them the courtesy of refraining from offending their sensibilities. Alas, so many of them feel no need to refrain from offending mine. So, sod off, I say. (Cat got your tongues?)

Will

How is it that all these ppl offend you, cant imagine they standing there shoutin abuse at your for being straight! there is no need to call a gay person a fag or queer they are still just a person the same as you! its that kinda attitude that that makes it hard being gay in this narrow minded backwards island!

Terry Langlois

If you look at jack sprat various barely-coherent ramblings on this thread, I think that it is clear that he actually comes from the US.

fishman

Re Eric from the Little Mermaid. Why is kissing a man more offensive than him kissing someone who is half a fish (and about 12)?

CJS

PAHAHA Brilliant point!!

VQ

I was going to say a similar thing about why it's acceptable for a beautiful woman to kiss a beast but not for two women to kiss.

jack sprat

One is allegory and the other is agit-prop.

DavidG

Comment of the YEAR right there!! Nice one!

Sian Jones

Haha brilliant comment!! Some people seem to be forgetting the "subtle" undertones that are in all the Disney films!!

jack sprat

No, most are simply unaware of them, as was Walt himself back in the day. Had he realized the nature of some of his illustrators, he probably would have turned them in to the FBI on morals charges.

Context there is also important. Those illustrators who were inserting pedophilic imagery were reputedly themselves homosexual. It's not widely rumored that they were pedophiles, though they certainly were bold perverts.

brodie

how on earth can anyone find this offensive? there`s way more offensive stuff in guernsey than that, jeesh get a grip people!

lees83

i think its cool, sometimes i like to make my own artisic impressions of Spiderman and Batman.

Philip

This is a good way for an artist to gain exposure!

I walked past the paintings in questions and the only thIng that struck me was how poor they were, thought they'd been painted as part of a school project!

Also the artist had better watch out as Disney can be defensive over their copyrights!

brodie

how can you say they were poor? thats a terrible thing to say, i dont think there would be many school children who can paint that well, i know i certainly couldnt and still could not now as an adult. i doubt it was done for exposure either, i doubt this lady would have ever thought that a few people would have made such a song and dance over her paintings, generally people have better things to do with their time than make a huge fuss over a picture!

jack sprat

There it is again. By all means provoke, but screech to the heavens when one gets a response which one doesn't like.

At least this artist isn't screeching, although her response is disappointing. "Constructive criticism" is like any other criticism, or should be; irrelevant to the artist. Nor should the viewer need explain his reaction. It's personal to him or her.

It'll be a cold day in Hell when i feel obliged to justify my profound distaste for mimes and rap "music", for instance.

Sian Jones

Copyright has already been talked about Philip.. However, would you like to offer me your constructive criticism then Philip?

Sian Jones

Thanks Brodie.. I'm still waiting for some constructive criticism from Philip!

Scarlett

here's some, Sian.

Toughen up to prepare yourself for the real artwork if you want to survive and be successful (they'll do more than giggle, trust me), don't produce 'controversial' work if you can't deal with the 'controversy' without berating children and whining to the Press, and finally, don't depend on a non story in the local media to generate interest (and a better price) for your work, try spending your time more productively by creating something of substance that draws attention because of it's quality and speaks for itself, instead.

Neil

Princess kissing frogs is simply bestial!! I'm outraged!

Sian Jones

Haha excellent!

jack sprat

She has a note from her doctor. Psychotropic drugs help with her chronic migraines.

KJC

I have told my son who is six that some men like to kiss men and some women like to kiss women. I can't remember how the conversation arose now but I didn't see a problem in telling him in a basic way. He was not bothered at all and told me that he prefers girls as they are prettier!

Sian Jones

Thank you :)

jack sprat

Of course girls are prettier. Only a narrow slice of humanity doesn't see the obvious here. Even most gay people acknowledge that to be the truth! (Of course, most gays are lesbians.)

KJC

My son is only six jack sprat. Give him a break on his niavety about differences between the sexes!

Abi

Yeah, the only kids who will be bothered by this are the ones with parents who are bothered by it.

Who decides what's 'conventional'?

Personally I think it should be mother nature.

Homosexuality is natural and present in hundreds of species, is it not? Why shelter your children from something nature intended?

It's going to be pretty sad for these people's kids when some of them turn out to be Gay (they will, and seeing a painting Of Jasmine and Ariel kissing will neither cause or prevent it) and feel shame and guilt simply for being who they are, because they weren't exposed to all of the different types of 'normal' when they were young.

Sian Jones

This is the point I was trying to get across Abi, thank you or explaining it so well!

jack sprat

Gay propaganda not to the contrary, both human nature in particular and the biological norm are otherwise. (1) Female is the base state of nature. (a) There are many species which alternate between the genders and others some or more of whose members become male only in the presence of environmental stimuli. (b) There are no species in which there are ever only males, for obvious reasons. (2) There is abundant evidence that human gay male sexuality is largely, perhaps even entirely, a response to significant and abnormal in utero stress. Whether one cares to characterize the disparate results of the resulting hormonal cascades is itself a matter of choice. Similar results are electrodactyly and Down's Syndrome. And hydroencephaly.

Yes, Virginia, Mother Nature DOES make mistakes. People then get to choose their responses to such mistakes. In the fullness of time, a vanishingly small proportion of such mistakes drive successful speciation. Most cause spontaneous abortion.

sarnia expat

I think we do all need to get a grip; (this is one young artist who through this exposure has done her future career no harm at all!) but at the same time be aware of the fact that not everyone may agree with "alternative" lifestyles. These are now been peddled out upon the whole community as now being viewed as "normal". Now before anyone asks "what is normal" - I defend my absolute right to think that I am normal in that I have a husband (a man), I am a woman (who dosen't have any desire to kiss another woman, and have children born a) in wedlock and b) without the need of any artificial device.

Now, that possibly makes me offensive to just about everyone. But - this is still a democracy, I believe - I am not being homophobic by saying these things, but just airing my right to do so.

Terry Langlois

not sure that I see your point.

Yes, you are "normal", but so is someone who chooses to live with someone of the same sex. There is more than one version of "normal". Neither needs to offend the other. The homosexual person's life is not changed by the fact that you are heterosexual, and nor is yours changed by the fact that they are homosexual.

Heterosexuality co-exists alongside homosexuality.

The curious thing is why some people think that a picture of a man/woman kissing would be fine but a picture of a man/man or woman/woman is not fine. That disapproval is the only point at which one person is trying to impose their sexuality on others. The existence of the picture does not.

Megrez

Good lordy, Terry, your debate wording is consistently perfect.

Jelly face, sir.

jack sprat

Terry, you are wrong. The word "normal" means what it has always meant--usual, typical, expected--the efforts of some to Bowdlerize it notwithstanding. I'd frankly have a lot more respect for some people if they'd simply say that they "dare to be different" by being true to their abnormal selves.

The fact that some people choose not to refrain themselves from using some words, including "normal" ("abnormal" and "aberrant"), pointedly intending a pejorative usage of same, is no good reason to throw those words out. I assure you that those who wish you ill can as easily piss in your next bowl of soup as your last. Just make a stand and deal with the fact that other people don't see you in the same light as you see yourself.

Now, it they choose to go all Westboro Baptist Church on you, then by all means pop them in the mouth.

jack sprat

In my last, substitute "restrain" for "restrain themselves".

Pizza

I think the more questionable point is that the Press felt it necessary to mention the artist's sexuality.

Does that have any relevance to the potential offense of these pieces?

Is she left handed as well? We need to be told!

Sian Jones

I don't mind, it is through personal experience of homophobia which encouraged me to create these paintings.

(Ps. I am right handed ;) )

Pizza

Glad to hear it.

Being left handed is unnatural and should be forcibly corrected. These people should be shunned by any right minded society. Apparently it's catching too.

And as for being ambidextrous, well that's just perverted.

On a serious note may I suggest that for your next project you recreate your canvases using enhanced photography and real people. That should put the cat amongst the pigeons!

jack sprat

Sian, an artist should never admit that she's not left-handed. You might as well admit to having no talent. LOL

King Maker

All about you, yet again. Not the art as you suggest.

Sam

I think the pictures are great - well done Sian!

My two year old would love them.

Sian Jones

Thanks Sam :)

St Marcouf

I find public displays of kissing vulgar and offensive, and the drawings are quite obviously inappropriate for children. They are also so tedious in their PC message - male v male, black v white, cultural dress v redhead...

brodie

if you find public displays of kissing vulgar, maybe you should consider joining a monastry or somewhere like that, that would keep you out of the normal world?

Sian Jones

That comment Brodie actually made me laugh out loud- well said!

Sam

They are not 'quite obviously inappropriate for children'. My daughter is growing up in a very happy, stable, loving family with two gay mums who kiss in front of her - so this picture just reflects life. She isn't traumatised or upset but a happy, confident, loving little girl who has a balanced view of the world!

Sian Jones

Thanks Sam- that is my point exactly!

PLP

Whatever you do, don't watch a football match. Grown men kissing and cuddling each other all the time!

jack sprat

Excepting the gay kisses, the PC messages which you mention were deliberately put there by DISNEY, which is fast becoming as doctrinaire in such matters as is USA Today.

vic gamble

...offensive to children? I'll tell you what is offensive...my four year old daughter coming home from Nursery one Easter clutching a picture she had drawn of a little stick man on a crucifix with red blobs for blood..

When I complained to the owner of the Nursery that there were much nicer images to present to a four year old at Easter (bunny rabbits, daffodils, little yellow chicks) she responded by calling me a typical Marxist.

That's how people, like me, who are not Marxists, become Marxists...!!!

King Maker

exactly Vic - so now we should ensure there is art with marxists cavorting around kissing same sex marxists!! so that heteresexual marxists know its their right to be able to attach apendiges and do things to same sex marxists!

jack sprat

This is what happens when people allow those whom they do not know to raise their children up for them.

Jake

Don't know about any of the rest of you but im totally shocked! Im shocked that this is even noticed as something that is meant to be 'abnormal'. People have obviously grown up in a culture that pictures of a man and a woman are common place, even some of the advertising images you see around of nude women with strategically placed pieces of fabric placed over them are hardly noticed and no one says anything because it is considered 'the norm'. Place those same images in some other countries (middle east etc) and you would have the same reaction as this has produced. This just goes to prove that as a culture we have shied away from this kind of image and idea but rightfully so? Personally I think this is a great piece of art and gets people thinking and hopefully the way the artist intended. Like it or not we live in a culture where we don't censor images as much as others and I think this is a good thing. After all the world happens whether we bury our heads in the sand from it or not.

jack sprat

Actually, Jake, in the States the commercialization of sex is still very much a point of cultural contention. On some things, even, common cause has been made between some radical feminists and the religious right. Also, between mainstream movement feminists and the likes of Hustler's Larry Flynt. Stranger bedfellows than these are difficult for me to imagine.

Jerry

Congratulations to Sian on getting her images displayed on the front page of the Press, not many local artists get such great publicity!

I don't think they're her best pieces by a long way but a little controversy goes a long way for an artist...though i'm sure she didn't expect the pictures to get quite such publicity.

Says a lot about our Island

Sian Jones

Thanks Jerry

Louise K

I just think its hilarious how the people who would prefer not to see this art, are the ones whose negativity are forcing it into public view. Well done Sian, you have created a starting point for some great debate :-) Brilliant work!

Sian Jones

Thanks Louise :)

Donkey in Brizzle

This is why i'm glad I don't live in Guernsey anymore! A small minority of closed minded people ruin the entire atmosphere of Guernsey, this is 2012 for pete's sake!! ...genuinely unbelievable!

Terry Langlois

so please tell me where you now live, so that we can all move to this wonderful utopia where everyone is open minded and without prejudice or bigotry!

a few overly-sensitive bigoted individuals with a bit too much time on their hands do not exactly "ruin the entire atmosphere", unless you live your entire life via Your Shout, that is!

Donkey in Brizzle

Re where I live... I thought my name would be a giveaway! the utopian city of Bristol of course! ...where gay people can show affection in the street without fear of a linching! .....(oh my gosh what will the children say!!)

Terry Langlois

they can here too.

In fact, I'd be more worried about being physically accosted in certain parts of Bristol than in any part of Guernsey.

bcb

What a silly comment.

There are very few on here that has said much against this art and even then nothing very bad has been said. So it seems that the vast majority don`t have a problem with this.

Michael

@ 15 Sarnia Expat

>"I am not being homophobic"

>"alternative lifestyles" - "now being viewed as “normal”

Pick one.

The fact that you even identify same-sex relationships as 'alternative' is appalling.

Same-sex pairings are no more 'alternative' than overweight, red-headed or black ones.

And nobody is 'peddling' these 'lifestyles' (if you can call genetic predisposition a 'lifestyle') on you or anyone else, they're simply demanding an end to being constantly branded 'alternative' or 'unnatural' or being told that their happiness damages young children.

I'd like to apologise on behalf of everyone in the community that doesn't look and act exactly like you do. Must be a hard, miserable life you lead.

sarnia expat

Don't fly off the handle Michael. I am allowed to have my own views, as you do yours. We simply don't agree, that's it. As for having a hard miserable life, I am perfectly happy with my lot thanks ever so for asking.

Michael

Do not venture publically that which you are unwilling or unable to also defend publically, your opinion included.

Sarnia expat

But I can defend it publicly. This is public isn't it? You are so very defensive, aren't you. Perhaps you should go on a diversity course and learn that there are people who are heterosexuals out there as well as homosexuals. Maybe you forgot tHis.

Michael

"Perhaps you should go on a diversity course and learn that there are people who are heterosexuals out there as well as homosexuals."

Haha, the delicious irony!

Firstly, you're confusing the right to freedom of thought with the right to freedom of expression. Freedom of THOUGHT (and to hold an opinion) is not limited in any way. The right to EXPRESS that view publically is subject to the condition that it does not harrass or intimidate others, which, by branding a certain demographic (be they gay, black, jewish etc.), you are potentially doing.

I know that heterosexuals exist, the difference here is that the homosexual community has recognised that holding an opinion is ok and turning that opinion into laws and actions which turn the target demographic into second class citizens because of how they were born is not.

If the 'right to an opinion' is the best you can offer, you really have no grounds to complain about the things other people do in their lives. The right to express that opinion publically isn't actually legally guaranteed, anyway..

Sarnia expat

Perhaps I have just pointed out the delicious irony is that heterosexuals are becoming more and more marginalised in a world which sees homosexuality as the norm. Whether or not this is true, is open to debate. I debate the opposite to you, that is my opinion and one for which I am still allowed. Problem is that by raising such opposite comments these days is seen as being diversive. How can my thoughts expressed in this forum be seen by anyone but the most narrow minded bigot as being intimidating? I am happy with how I lead my life and expect that anyone else of a minority, alternative lifestyle get on with theirs equally unencumbered. You may not like my words but Michael, that's life, get used to it.

jack sprat

No, Michael, it's some of you Europeans who are confused about such things. In those parts of your former Empire where some remote semblance of freedom still clings perilously to the rocks, it isn't "Freedom of Thought" which is enshrined in protection, but "Freedom of Speech", "Freedom of Association", and "Freedom of the Press".

You, sir, ARE the enemy.

jack sprat

Sarnia Expat, Michael would very much like to put you in the stocks or have you bullwhipped for your grievous effrontery. He IS the enemy. He's merely changed his clothes with the passing fashions.

As always, his kind stands ready to be counted among the Priesthood of the Gods of the Marketplace.

jack sprat

LOL, Michael; thou art in high dudgeon, indeed! FYI, in the States, as on the web, "alternative" is the very name CHOSEN BY THOSE WHO ENGAGE IN SUCH BEHAVIORS AND TASTES. Take it up at the next meeting of the Society of the Terminally Disaffected.

xander_myst

atrs should be celebrated and enjoyed not be made to be demostrative sian has painted a picture not started a political protest u can analise all you want but that is the main point of a contemporary artist to bring this dicussion out regarsless welcome to 2012 accptance is here and all of you complaining that its ramming homosexuality down your throats its is complete hyporcrary that u chose to then activly voice your opnion on a public for with the intention of discreting her art

Terry Langlois

sorry, that is the funniest typo I've seen in a while!

sarnia expat

Freudian slip somewhere along the line Terry. Oops, sorry we are not supposed to have a sense of humour if we are NOT gay!

Terry Langlois

No, everyone is supposed to have a sense of humour. We'd be a lot better off if we all did ;-)

xander_myst

im dyslexic i appologise

jack sprat

Touch typing is the friend of the dyslexic, just as it is the friend of the acrophobe.

jack sprat

Not so, xander myst. As you write, fashion has changed, true. At this late date, it can fairly be argued that it is you and Sian who represent the Establishment opinion. There's no great courage in thumbing one's nose at the relatively powerless.

Will

We all live on this planet together!

Some of us are straight, some gay and some in-between.

We are all just as equal to each (as everyone is still human) regardless of our sexuality, its frustrating that some people forget that and see other as inferior or not equal because of the way they are!

People might find it hard to explain what they don't understand, but that does not make it wrong, everyone of use is different and everyone should realise this!

If you don't understand try learn more about it before you start criticising others.

Alvin

Brilliant publicity stunt !

Sian Jones

Ha that honestly wasn't my intention, but at least it has got people discussing such an important aspect of local, modern-day society

Steve

Well done Sian. I hope one day people who say "I'm not a homophobe but I don't want my kids to see pictures of gay people" will realise how ridiculous and contradictory their stance is.

Basically, they're saying they want to perpetuate their own prejudices in the next generation. I can't think of a worse example to set your children.

Terry Langlois

exactly, just as:

"I'm not racist, but I don't want my children to have to look at black peopls on the bus. I mean, how will I explain that some people come from different races? It might turn them afro-caribbean..."

Will

Are you really that narrow minded that you would not have your children look at someone that was not white just so you didnt have to explain to them that there are different culture and ethnicities!

jack sprat

Will, are YOU really so literal-minded that you did not realize that Terry was being sarcastic? SMH in sorrow for the Friends of the Scarecrow.

jack sprat

I'd find the parallel more compelling did I not know that hundreds of gay pride parades in the States, over some three decades, if not more, seemingly never had a problem marching side-by-side with those walking beneath the banner of NAMBLA (the North American Man/Boy Love Association.)

Decent people break their own signs over the heads of such vermin. That gay people repeatedly did NOT do so is informative.

States House

No parents have complained about the picture? No one has complained about the picture, maybe its quality but not its subject. The only person who has gone to the media is the artist but on thesamenote, im suremost people let their kids watch the soaps and there are gays in those so I doubt very much that they are homophobes but im also sure whether gay or straight that no parent would want their kids watching a sex scene. This kiss picture has caused no reaction whatsoever when put on public display, in fact im sure shesaid she showed it in the uk first. She had to resort to bringing it here to get a reaction and when it didnt sheherself had to then resort to going to the media herself and make up a story about some kids.

Tim

Are there any Disney copyright infringments in the painting?

guernseyal

Disney has got a great motto (not official!) that is "Don't mess with the Mouse". That is because they have a very large team of lawyers whose sole purpose in life is to take out any copyright infringement they can find. If a picture is recognisably (in this case) a Disney character or more then copyright has been infringed. Hopefully they won't notice a small island in the English Channel!

jack sprat

Sadly, Disney has little to no choice. Failure to defend copyright has cost many a business their property rights.

Matti

Listen, if it was 'normal' to be gay the population would come to an end, don't you think? Nature sometimes messes up, that's all.

Will

I'm sorry its not normal to be gay!!!! its quite normal!

and the whole planet is not gay so im sure the human race will survive.

GayGsy

I think you'll find it the straight couples that have the gay babies.....

jack sprat

They also have those with webbed feet, those with Down's Syndrome, those containing the dead foetuses of their twins, those born with only a single full hemisphere of the brain, and countless stillborns, both obvious and unremarked. Also, some say, those with so-called superpowers.

Mistakes were made. People and cultures deal with them differently, as they will. Still, they were mistakes. (Two things about evolution are categorically true. First, that mistakes better be made very, very seldom; particularly among the more complex organisms, lest they rapidly become sterile with one another. Second, that mistakes better be made sometimes, lest all life rapidly wipe itself out.)

jack sprat

To my last, I would add this: The nearly universal attraction among us to the female is to be expected, as I've earlier written here. The widespread persistence of gay males is another matter entirely; there's no obvious benefit to the species that is so compelling as to balance the energy expenditures seemingly cast onto rocky ground. (Ask any population geneticist about this; energy accounting correlates exceptionally well with the survivability of mutations.)

Then again, maleness seems deliberately profligate at its core. It is known that the brains of both gay males and concert pianists are characterized by a single small section of the brain which tends to be multiples larger--four such , on average, as I recall--than those in the rest of us, female and straight male alike. It's also known that concert pianists are vastly more likely to have high-genius IQs. Given the nature of entropy, perhaps gay maleness, in company with the down-low, serves to top up the genetic storehouse.

CJS

Yes nature does mess up, it clearly forgot to give you common sense! The vague boundaries of normality of which you speak are absurd in this day and age of diversity.

To me it is simply baffling how people get so het up over relatively such trivial personal issues that don't affect them in anyway. I am gay, does that concern/affect you in any way?

Cher Eugene

"I am gay, does that concern/affect you in any way?"

It is the theft of a perfectly good word that I can no longer use in the way I was instructed by my English Master. Why could you not stick with poof

Doi

>implying the meanings of words never change

bob

Um, How would the population end? if the last man and woman on earth where both Homosexual they could still procreate they may not enjoy it but it's not impossible.

Sian by the sounds of it your lucky you haven't been burnt alive in a wicker man yet, now that would be offensive.

Gille

I looked at the comments of this article because I was told there was a decent debate on the subject.

I didn't read it all, but what I did read wasn't even worth reading.

To the Trolls in this discussion, you should be ashamed of yourselves. You know who you are.

Sincerely,

Gille de Carteret

Sian Jones

Thanks Gille :)

jack sprat

So THAT is what a "huff" looks like in print. Now we know. Did you also mean to sniff disdainfully?

jack sprat

How appropriate that you have a French name. Are you by chance also both a Parisian waiter and Monsieur le President General Zombie de Gaulle?

Neil

Sian's managed to shock every conservative convention in two pictures. She's got gay Muslims snogging gay gentiles and inter racial relationships; under age sex and even gingers in there!!

Blimey - you done good girl!! Too funny!

Terry Langlois

...coz we all know who has no souls

Ginge

Gingers do have souls!

I'm a Christian! You be hatin'

A.J.

Long gone are the days when 'Gays' were called 'Queers'But then it was more generally kept private then,and these conversations would not have been out in the open.

GayGsy

Obviously not in your world AJ - seems to be a word right up there on the tip of your tongue...

Not Worried

Not sure what all the fuss is about. Seeing same sex cartoon characters kissing is nothing new. Must people most remember watching Bugs Bunny, he would dress up in girl’s clothes and kiss Elmer Fudd all the time and no one thought anything of it.

PLP

My goodness, I know "this is Guernsey" but what a storm in a teacup this is. Over 90 comments in under 8 hours - must be a record! Let's try to cut through the hysteria and get some perspective.

First of all, even in Guernsey we live in an increasingly diverse society where we all have freedom of speech and expression. This means that people like Sian Jones are allowed the freedom to express themselves artistically. It also means others are allowed to either like, dislike or be offended by it. The same applies to the gay lifestyle - people are allowed to be openly gay; others are allowed to openly prefer the more traditional family structure. Notwithstanding this freedom, we have a moral duty to protect the weak in our society, such as children. This means that there are certain boundaries that limit what can be displayed publicly and where.

Following on from Vic's post, let's take another example, Mel Gibson's movie The Passion of the Christ. Many people found it extremely moving whilst others found it offensive, grisly and disrespectful. These views weren't polarised to any particular group either but were spread around all types of people. I know atheists who were moved by it, whilst devout Christians refused to even watch it. Was the film banned because some were offended, but it was given an 18 certificate. Such boundaries will always be debated however generally speaking the precedent of the "reasonable man" should take precedence.

Now that's over with, let's try to apply that here. The first question is, has the creation of this picture caused harm? The answer has to be no. The second question is, where would it be reasonable to allow this artwork to be displayed? Let's try to apply some objective observations:

- The pictures aren't homoerotic unless you choose to make them that way - they portray two cartoon characters kissing. In many cultures people of the same sex kiss all the time without sexual undertones or eroticism. It's all in the interpretation.

- Many younger children wouldn't have a clue about sexuality so wouldn't see anything apart from two people kissing, and a lot of young children find adult displays of affection weird anyway. Most parents will know what I mean!

- Homosexuality is not illegal, so there is nothing illegal portrayed.

From these observations we have to conclude that there is no reasonable objection to the public display of this artwork. People are free to be offended or critical of it, but it shouldn't be banned from public display.

From my own personal perspective, I'm a "Bible-thumping" evangelical Christian parent with conservative views and I'm not offended in the slightest. I am far more concerned about protecting my daughter from the general over sexualisation of our culture (padded bras / pole dancing kits for 8 year olds) than whether she happens to see a cartoon picture of two people kissing that she won't read anything into at her tender age. It is there that we should focus our efforts - protecting children from the far more vulgar things on the TV/radio and in magazines/newspapers readily available on the shelves.

GayGsy

Some sense :-))))

PLP

Thanks GayGsy - I still don't know what all the fuss is about however there are lessons to learn on how we deal with cultural diversity on our little rock.

Like it our not, the cultural mix is broadening and IMO simply withdrawing to our own little cultural ghettos and throwing rocks/insults at each other is not the answer - it's not good for society, it's also a copout. My hope is that as a society we mature to the extent where people with diametrically opposed views and lifestyles can get on as people. Tolerance doesn't have to mean agreement though, so yes let's have robust debate, but hopefully we can grow out of name calling.

Oh, one last thing - let's all lighten up and smile!! We are allowed to talk about this kind of thing publicly. In some countries, both of us would be in serious danger....you for being openly gay, me for being openly Christian.

jack sprat

Do you? Has Guernsey somehow managed to evade the EU speech restrictions?

Rachel

This 'art' seems like it's just a cartoon rip-off of the Benetton advertising campaign.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisfree/belief/2011/nov/20/benetton-pope-kissing-ad

blogger

Bring on Disneys lawyers to bring this publicity stunt to an end.

Mrs Meat

My reaction was bleuch: not the topic (I couldn't care less) but the whole 'art with an issue'. I equally hate 'stories with a moral'.

I don't think this was time or the place for the display. Disney is for 5 year olds so they would've been the ones drawn to the display. Let them have their characters behaving in their usual way and save the 'adult message' for an adult-appropriate time.

Maybe that's why some people were offended, not the gay issue, which is hardly burning in this day and age.

Personally I find the whole pink 'n' lilac Disney Princess 'rescued by a prince' utterly loathsome, but again I wouldn't expect to see that issue challenged on a family occasion - I wouldn't try to moralise about it to a little girl at her birthday party.

I think I'm mostly turned off by the weakness here: the meak foray into Disney issues which could be addressed in a far more forthright and graphic way. The hiding amongst a big general display instead of making a shout about something Sian (presumably) feels strongly about. And then the meek apology.

Why not turn up the volume and do something more graphic (I'm not saying 'obscene', but there are bigger boundaries to be pushed here) and actually invite the right audience? It would get just as much publicity.

States House

Exactly.

Damien Hurst for primary school.

In fact, this picture is no more skilled than a primary school aged kid dould do themselves.

The artist must have been hanging around all day, itching to see the slightest sign of disgust from their "controversial" piece but had to make do with a pair of 10 year old girls who she then labelled homophobic for laughing at her doodle.

Art to me is not about "questioning my views". I want to appreciate the skill that has gone in to a drawing, painting, sculpture, photograph etc. This picture is just a blatant, transparent attempt at controversy and infamy.

PLP

Call me old fashioned but I would hope 10 year olds wouldn't have a clue what homophobia meant. As I said before, many kids find any adult displays of affection strange. It is a joy to see the innocence of children who don't have agendas.

I think Sian James has been guilty of nothing more than hyper-sensitivity. Let's not respond in kind, these paintings are innocuous and, in my opinion, as art they are eminently forgettable.

Wil

Is that all it was? 10 year olds laughing? Thats clutching at straws.... she must have been so disappointed with that poor response... not the huge reaction she was looking for no doubt. Did she ask them what in particular they were laughing at or just jump to conclusions? Bit harsh to label 10 year olds who did nothing more than have a little giggle. If she did not ask the ten year olds exactly how they felt, then how does she know they were offended? Maybe it was just that the characters were with different people than usual? I'm happy to be enlightened if it was more than two ten year olds laughing that bought this article to the press- indeed how did the press get involved? Did she ring them herself for more attention?

Again, I haven't read the whole article where the artist might have gone on to explain that she had a long conversation with the two ten year old children about the painting then knew exactly that they were offended by the homosexuality depicted and not anything else and then after careful consideration concluded that they were homophobic. If this did not happen then the children have been unfairly criticised and no doubt should be the ones offended.

jack sprat

In my experience, (a) almost all ten-year old girls are offended by adult sexuality and (b) almost all ten-year old boys are alternately alarmed and amused by it.

Wil

Yes Jack, it is no doubt the 10 year olds know that they have been written about, slated and branded homophobic by the artist and no doubt feel most unfairly humiliated.

As i said above, If the artist did not ask the children specifically about their feelings before branding them and publicly shaming them in the media then she should apologise. It doesn't matter if she didn't release their names, the children know who they are and in this age the artist should know better.

States House

The artist has achieved what she wanted, attention, for what isnt a very skilled piece of work. Put it in auction and see how much it raises.

I think its disgusting that the artist can react to 2 young children and accuse them of being homophobic. Ay young kid would probably have the same reaction seeing a hetrosexual kiss. It doesnt surprise me that the artist is gay themselves. Attention seeking by their own admission, to cause a reaction, that is what they have got. Of course its going to seem odd to children seeing two people of the same sex kissing, they were concieved by a male sperm in to a female egg, there is no other way.

They lured childrens attention in by using well known brightly coloured Disney cartoon characters. Being gay, there is nothing wrong with that but luring kids to react to get attention is a bit feeble. This whole story is based on two 10 year old children, not any critical acclaim, which it will never receive. If this was on the streets of London or in a gallery, people would roll their eyes, snigger and move on. If this was an end of year final piece of artwork for Eric Snell he would call it mediocre at best.

crocodile

Guernsey homophobic? Reading the posts above suggests quite the opposite. The homosexual lobby has worked hard through the last few decades to promote the idea that homosexual activity is normal and it has largely succeeded, although I think some of the older generation of heterosexuals may still take some persuading. Sadly it's almost impossible to debate the subject because the homosexual lobby and its fellow travellers brand everyone who disagrees with them as "homophobic" and tries to close down any reasoned debate or discussion. Shouting "homophobic" does not constitute reasoned debate, I'm afraid, and shutting down free speech in that way is a form of fascism. Many people, who are quite accepting of homosexuals, nevertheless find the thought of the mechanics of homosexual activity hugely distasteful and would prefer that participants exercised a little discretion (and washed their hands afterwards). I daresay my post will get one or two of you happy folk jumping up and down and frothing at the mouth. Sorry about that.

As to the art: not an original idea, I'm afraid, (see Oz trial 1970s) and not particularly well executed; but the spin-off publicity will do no harm and the artist's ego will, no doubt, be well massaged.

Nick Le P

I am not offended by this, I just don't see the point of it. Nor am I a homophobe, I work with many gay and bi-sexual people and get on very with them. However, I don't subscribe to the view that homosexuality is normal.

GayGsy

Nick can I put one question to you - if 'normal' was men with men and women with women, would you be able to change the way you feel about the opposite sex so that you conform to the 'normal' view of society? There is no 'normal' in this world and if there is I certainly wouldn't want to be classed in that very small bracket.

Nick Le P

If normal was as you describe then we wouldn't be here to debate the issue. Nature put male with female to procreate and that is what I refer to as normal.

Liesja Grut

Well done Sian! Guernsey needs artists like you who arent afraid to broach subject matters that are personal and important to them. After all being an Artist is about conveying personal,powerful, messages and meanings to the public through ones work. It's so refreshing to see thought provoking work on the Island! A much needed change from Land and Sea scape water colour paintings! I personally can't wait to see what inspires your work next! Keep doing what you do best! xxx

Mrs Meat

RBut she clearly IS afraid to broach the subject, which is why approached it in such a timid insipid way.

Then, hiding behind the size of the event, she sat there quaking, scared (but secretly hoping) that someone would come along and complain about her 'feisty challenging' work.

What instead happened was the only people who approached her were of course kids, who were mildly put out by the subject.

Seems to me that Sian spends too long thinking up 'controversial' topics and not enough time actually honing her art skills.

Dan

I don't have any problem with the fact that it is same sex couples kissing. If this painting was meant for kids to see I'm sure the kids would much rather see the characters doing something relevant to their individual films rather than kissing a character from a different film.

To me it looks like a rubbish painting one would find in a youth centre or child's dentist office.

If like the painter said that the point is to "be about making people question their views and react" then it was done poorly and could have been done better.

If you are an artist by profession then if I were you I'd seriously think about a career change.

States House

There are far more deserving artworks that could do with this exposure. The tired old "homophobic" argument is boring. Its not like there are bands of homophobes running the streets with pitch forks. This reminds me of the recent policeman calling a black man "boy", story about nothing! This is a picture purposefully done to get young childrens attention and low and behold, 2 young children are the basis of this story. I say story rather than artical as we only have the artists word for it, has anyone actually written to the media in complaint about this, or is it just litterally, only the desperate (dissapointed at the lack of attention it got) artist who has?

St Marcouf

No doubt the artist has gathered together her friends and supporters to comment on this thread because there is no way the views expressed are representative.

GayGsy

Curious as to what you mean. I am assuming that you are disappointed that there aren't more people saying it's wrong or something. Care to expand on your comment?

.- ps I am not a friend of the artist - and I'd be a bit annoyed if my friends were sticking up for me but saying that didn't like my art.......just sayin :-)

GayGsy

Could you clarify what you mean by that please? I am not sure if you are trying to say that because the majority of people agree that no one should be taking offence that the people commenting must be the artists friends (I am not by the way), as there is no way that this can be what the majority of people think - heaven forbid that there is acceptance in the 21st century...

sinner

can you get this on DVD ?? or just the disney version

Scarlett

Never mind the 'art', like, States House, I find it interesting that so few of us have picked up on the fact that Sian felt it appropriate to call two children 'homophobic'.

Quite frankly, THAT is what has spoken more loudly to me than this attention seeking attempt at controversial art.

She knew only too well that by using children's cartoon characters in these pieces, she would attract some attention, not all of it positive, but it seems to have eluded her that quite obviously CHILDREN would also be drawn to look at your work...

how many other (grown up) people gave you negative feedback based on their homophobic beliefs, and how many of those did you have the audacity to call 'homophobes' by the way, Sian? Many?

Judging by most of the comments on here, a large majority are very much not like that (and for the record, neither am I).

You have your cause to promote and want to express that through your work, however, to be so ridiculously over sensitive as to take offence at a couple of silly kids making a negative remark and then labelling them with the very unpleasant title of 'homophobe' makes you no better than the intolerant ignorant fools who vilify people for their sexual preferences.

- quite frankly, Sian, if one of my children had been accused as such by you, it would be a damn sight more than your work I'd have come down there to critique you on.

You have gotten your 15 minutes of fame and free PR in the Press with this non story about your non art, yet hardly anyone has actually focussed on your work, which when looked at objectively, minus the hornet's nest you have so evidently enjoyed stirring up, is incredibly amateurish, naive, and slightly less skilled and interesting than the incredible work that the average Grammar School student produces on a regular basis.

The other thing they should have taught you at Uni (really?!!) is, 'let the work speak for itself' but you are so busy distracting us all waving your rainbow flag that you won't let it do that...

possibly with good reason.

Scott

Really can't see why some people are offended by this painting, it's 2012 not 1912! I Would much rather see 2 men or 2 women kissing each other than kicking the sh!t out of each other in the middle of the street anyday!

Dumdon Quay

Dont take it too much to heart Sian, I wouldn't even bother rising to some of the pathetic opinions of morons who post on this website.

If these pictures were displayed in London or somewhere that is aware that the year is 2012 people would accept and appreciate them.

I think they are brilliant and, although this may not have been the intention, they are a well deserved kick in the teeth of the racial/sexual discrimination that I hear on a daily basis both in work and out and about in this backward little hovis advert of an island.

States House

I can guarantee you as a former art student myself and visitor to galleries that these pictures in the context of art are weak. This may not be her best example of her work but to put it out in a public display id have thought youd have to be pretty content with your effort to want to show it off. She may be capable of better but from the example shes chosen to make a story out of, there are hundreds of artists on this island alone capable of better. Its not the sexuality thing that is the issue, its the quality. As someone else has said, it looks like something a kids done for school. The other issue is the attempt at fame through the public branding of 2 young 10 year old girls that were lured in to see something they thought was just a cartoon, not something designed to shock them and "question their views".

Whats wrong with producing a work of art that everyone regardless of sexual orientation can just admire and appreciate? Something that each person would be proud to own. Some just want to make a statement because they have a lack of talent.

Will

U cant judge art on the fact of how well its drawn or painted! art is all about opinion in my view, and if u dont like it then thats your view.

saying it look like kids work? ur sayin that the painting by Yves Klein of just a blue square that is in the tate gallery could not of been done by a child?

PLP

Guernsey ain't perfect I'll give you that but if it was as "backwards" as you suggest these paintings wouldn't have been allowed anywhere near the public eye. Instead they are displayed in full view of the general public, with only a few grumbles on Facebook/TIG and a cheeky comment by a couple of 10 year olds. Big wow.

Perhaps you should ask Sian if you can take them on tour to Iran and Saudi Arabia? I guarantee you the reception there will make you glad you live in this "hovis advert of an island."

Scarlett

errr, Dumbdon. How many negative remarks on here versus positive IS there, exactly?

Have you actually READ any of the posts?

Sian created this piece to create controversy, and that's what she has done, rather less than she'd hoped (as most here seem to support her - try actually reading them) as well as get some damned good PR f.o.c. because she accused two children who giggled at the picture of being homophobes, which isn't particularly pleasant, in my view.

- did she not consider that children would be drawn to images of characters from their favorite cartoons or not aware what kids are like, and seriously, is she that overly sensitive?

God help her in the real art world.

The many people I know over here who are gay are quite openly so, and in the main, happy, with many friends and an active social life. I've never heard of them being persecuted in 'this backward little hovis (?) of an island...' in the way you apparently are.

Perhaps people react negatively because you are so quick to fly off the handle and insult everyone with your offensive, generalised remarks about this island and the people who live here, which pretty much makes you a xenophobe and a bigot...

I bet you're fun at a dinner party.

Alternately, perhaps it's because you have no taste in art, as it appears to me you would view old potato peelings (which these pieces are only slightly better than) as 'good art' as long as it's for the 'cause'.

Get over yourself, already.

bcb

Your comment re this Island is just pathetic. Its actually the people like you that have the real issues while most of us accept there is good and bad you`d rather just treat everyone the same.

And to be honest i just think your making it up. I do hear things from time to time but on a daily basis? really.

mrs rochester

States House,

How much did Damien Hurt sell his shark for?! Or perhaps Tracy Emin? I belive both these artists create there art work to provoke a reaction? No? I certinatly would not want a giant dead fish in my living room, I also happen to know these artworks are renouned as genious in London.... If you have no constructive critisim I suggest you keep your opinions to yourself.

States House

Damien Hurst didnt have to resort to waiting until his mid twenties and desperately calling a local rag and a local commercial radio station to boast about arguing with a pair of 10 year old girls.

Hes got where he has on merrit.

Maybe if this artist had kept her opinions to herself 2 young kids wouldnt have been branded in a local press.

Sian Jones

Damien Hirst*

Guillaume

Hey just wanted to say I find your artwork brilliant!

coco

Sigh

Are you lot not embarrassed by what you are writing - stop read back and think! Get in to the real world

Spartacus

Whatever the purpose of art may be, whether to arouse emotions, to please the eye, to engage the brain, stimulate discussion, Sian has succeeded on every level.

Every person's perception is different but this work has provoked a variety of diverse responses. Well done and congratulations Sian.

States House

If you had 2 young girls and they giggled at this picture, then they came over to you to ask "what does homophobic mean, that lady over there just said thats what we are" would you still be saying the same?

States House

By the same train of thought a cartoon picture of genitals scribbled on the gable of your house by a child would be art and youd appreciate it because it aroused your emotions, engaged the brain and stimultated discussion...

If the picture is that good, offer the artist money and have it hanging in your living room. Actions speak louder than words.

Also, ill say it again but has anyone other than the artist phoned the press? Like I said, no cares about the sexuality issue, its the abusing kids part (calling someone a homophobic is abuse) and the unwaranted attention to a mediocre piece of work.

Spartacus

States House

I disagree that commenting on homophobic behaviour by children is "abuse". If a girl shrieks at a spider is it abuse to say she is being arachnophobic?

Homophobic is the correct description of the behaviour and in no way derogatory or insulting. It amazes me how many children are homophobic actually in this day and age and how many problems this causes. Your attitude is a case in point as your strong negative reaction to this seems to have hit a nerve.

Homophobia creates a significant bullying issue in schools and not enough is done to tackle the problem. I salute Sian for raising awareness of problematic attitudes in this way, this is extremely educational in a beneficial way.

I am not an art collector and Sian's work has less effect on me than on you so perhaps you should consider hanging some on YOUR wall. However if Banksy paid a visit to my house and scribbled I would not complain :-)

bridget

Sian,

Well done you!

Even Banksy didnt get this much attention for the kissing policemaen.

You gotta love guernsey for the narrowminded views,maybe you could start a pride to get the public really fired up!

oh the thought of scantily clad gays marching along the sea front in colourful attire...quick blindfold your children guernsey!

Dave Haslam

You are right.

Calling 2 children Homophobic is narrowminded.

bcb

So you think there should be only one view on this? whatever it is.

Now thats what i call narrow minded and even more so if you think Guernsey is narrow minded.

Just another poster that cant wait to have a pop at Guernsey people with nothing to back it up.

Yes narrow minded indeed.

Atlas

States House,

I'd be very interested in seeing some of your artwork seeing as you feel you are so much better than Sian. I think maybe you should get off your high horse and realise that people will like art if they like it. As a personal preference not because it is good or bad. I go to photography galleries when I can - do this make me instantly better than everyone else? Does this mean I know what's good and what's bad?

I like Sian's work and I have never met her, know nothing about her but can gather that she is proud enough to take her artwork to a show - fair play to her!

You also say: "Its not like there are bands of homophobes running the streets with pitch forks. "

No, there isn't but the issue is most certainly is still there. Perhaps not so vocal in Guernsey but hate crimes are definitely all over the world. Everything is kept so secretive here but why should it have to?

People think that the Nazis have gone, they haven't. People think that racism and sexism has gone, it hasn't. Yes it's considerably less than the past but it's still there. It is still a problem. It is ridiculous for even some people to think that, in this culture, it is acceptable for people to be put into the category of being socially "abnormal" thus unable to voice their views because they are "wrong".

What on earth is wrong with showing a painting of same sex kissing, whether it is of men or women or both when it does absolutely NOTHING to hurt someone?

Keep going Sian, a lot of the people who have commented here are supporting you. Can't wait to see what you do next :D

Scarlett

Atlas. Appreciation - or the lack of it - of art, is subjective, not objective, we ALL have freedom of speech/our own opinions, so States House is as entitled to their view as you are you yours and Sian is to display 'controversial' work and received the expected 'controversy'...

homosexuality hardly being this century's hottest potato.

'What on earth is wrong with showing a painting of same sex kissing, whether it is of men or women or both when it does absolutely NOTHING to hurt someone'?

I think I and SH agree, NOTHING, unless the artist's work is an amateurish and naive representation of children's cartoon characters that (surprise!) attracts, errrrr, children, and the artist has a hissy and decides to have a go at them, calls the Press and tries to make a story about their apparent homophobia so she can get some free PR...

again I ask the question of Sian, how many grown ups reacted negatively (giggling hardly being considered criticism) and how many did you accuse of being 'homophobes'.....?

Look forward to seeing how much you are willing to pay for this piece when it goes to auction, Atlas.

bcb

"People think that the Nazis have gone, they haven’t. People think that racism and sexism has gone, it hasn’t".

Do you really think people are so blind that they believe this doesn`t exist?.

Dave Haslam

Am I the only one who's detected an unbeleivable amount of cynicism in this??

Leaving the Gay debate to one side, it appears the artist knew the content of her pictures was going to cause offence, as she was on guard for it by taking a defensive stance proved by her calling children homophobes.

The issue I have with this is the fact that this was an incredibly brazen attempt to get work noticed by deliberatly producing a piece of work on what is still (rightly or wrongly) a sensitive subject for many people. The fact that she then aimed her work at children knowingly amplifies the anticipated level of outrage.

She knew this work was going to cause offence purely because of the target audience, so lets not pretend this is all about making people think, this is solely about getting noticed. And its not a particularly clever way of doing it.

Terry Langlois

First, where did she call the children homophobes? This article does not say anything of the sort.

Second, what makes you think that she aimed the work at children? If you think that the use of children's characters means that she aimed it children, then you are being overly simplistic.

Are you sure that you are not making some massive assumptions there?

States House

You obviously didnt read the press or listen to island fm then because she did mention "homophobia" and she also said she mentioned it in arguing with the Two 10 year old girls, who probably laughed at the quality of a picture by a full time artist.

bcb

Terry while i dont care one way or another about the paintings i do think Dave has a valid point.

Terry Langlois

I wasn't saying that he didn't, but I could not see where those conclusions came from.

however, it does appear that there has been additional info in the media, which I've not seen.

Dave Haslam

Terry

States House answered your first question for me.

As for your second question, I dont think I am being overly simplistic at all, she wanted the paintings to appear to be aimed at Children to cause enough outrage to garner the attention.

Its not a massive leap to base this on the fact that the paintings are of characters from Disney animations which are aimed largely at children. Yes adults watch Disney, but if you want to argue that any portrayal (even this one) of Disney characters are more for adults than they are children then I think you may be missing my point that the subject matter was chosen in a very calculated nature.

This would not have generated the furore had it been, Peter Griffin kissing Quagmire for example, but then the artist knew that in my opinion, which is why she chose Disney characters.

I dont think I am making any assumptions bigger than the massive undercurrent to this thread that anyone who dares criticise this work is backward and homophobic which seems to be the trend here.

Terry Langlois

no Dave, you are missing the point.

Of course children's characters were consciously chosen - that is blindingly obvious. By doing so the artist was trying to make the viewer think about the subject. As you rightly say, if she had chosen two "adult" characters it would not have looked so incongruous and caused people to think so much.

But that does not mean that she was aiming the work at children. The work can employ images more familiar in a children's setting and still be aimed at adults.

As I say, you are being too simplistic.

(By the way, if the above commentary about berating two 10 year old girls is correct then I do not condone that at all, my comments are purely about the comments posted here, not about what the artist may or may not have done)

Also I don't see an undercurrent to this thread which suggests that people who criticise the work are homophobic. I do see messages which suggest that people reviling against a picture of male characters kissing are (possibly) homophobic. Critism for artistic reasons is very different.

Dave Haslam

Terry

I'm not missing the point I just dont beleive her.

I am fully aware of what the artist said she was trying to acheive and how she wanted to acheive it, you choose to beleive her, I dont. I have made it clear what I actually think she was trying to acheive.

Just because I dont beleive her it doesnt mean that I am being simplistic or missing out on some life altering insight into the world of art.

Terry Langlois

which is exactly why I said that you were making a big assumption.

you are assuming that your belief is correct (when it is based on what?) and then reaching a view based on that assumption.

I don't necessarily believe her, but I'm not forming a firm view either way. I didn't say that you were wrong, I just pointed out that your view is based on an assumption made by you, which you have now confirmed.

Mr Lloyd

I thought Dave made it fairly obvious he was making an assumption, so why the big play over semantics??

Practically every post on this page has taken an assumption on what her motives were, why the big issue here??

Terry Langlois

Mr Lloyd

It is not semantics. Half the problem with internet debates is that people post catagorical statements as fact (which Dave did) when they are merely nothing more than beliefs based on assumptions.

He made a statement as fact - e.g. "The fact that she then aimed her work at children knowingly" and "She knew this work was going to cause offence purely because of the target audience" when he does not know this to be true, he only thinks it to be true.

He should have said "I think that she was aiming the work at children, and I feel sure that she knew it would cause offence, and as a result I don't like what she has done..."

That would have been a proper description of his point of view.

Mr Lloyd

Terry

So you say "he should have said"

And then re-worded his words for him.

Firstly, that is sematics, and secondly its a little asinine to start pulling people up on how they word their sentences. Particularly as others seem to have grasped Daves point just fine.

Are you This is Guernseys new Grammar police??

Dave Haslam

Terry

I was willing to let this lie seeing as you appear to be in one of your desperate need to have the last word moods.

But your 12.02 post.

Wow, just......... wow!

Thats quite possibly the saddest thing I think I have ever read.

Terry Langlois

Dave, if someone asks me a question, I generally respond. That is hardly "trying to have the last word"!

I agree that this has moved some way beyond being worthwhile, which is a shame as it all started out so civilised.

Dave Haslam

They say imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.

There appears to be a Haslam impersonator 3.14pm.

Terry. Thou shalt not argue with false Haslams.

Neil Forman

Dave Haslam

I have to agree with you here. This just smells of a publicity stunt which hasn't quite gone to plan.

A normal 10 year old will laugh at this sort of thing every time. To then brand these children homophobic is totally wrong. If it had been my child at ten saying this artist had called her homophobic, she would have got her reaction.

The artist going to the press is just wrong and I think it was just another attempt to bring up this kind of debate. The only problem is it is not a debate, anyone not agreeing is just shouted down and called homophobic.

Well they say homophobic, I say hetrophobic!

The Man

Hilarious that this one of all the opinions expressed on this page. That one of the more coherent ones should be the subject of the rather childish attention it did get.

I happen to agree with your 'opinion' Dave, and never once did I think it any other than your opinion. I agree with you and Neil and THINK that this is a cynical publicity stunt. And her subsequent interview merely adds more weightto that theory.

On the subject of internet debates there are always some who feel the need to question others internet etiquette if comments are not expressed in exactly the manner they desire - which is rather ironic in an etiquette sense. I wouldnt let it bother you Dave.

Dave Haslam

Doesnt bother me at all mate, but thanks.

If I took everything I read on the internet to heart then I'd probably be propping up the meds bar at the Castel.

Terry Langlois

I agree that re-wording Dave's post was not the most elegant form of debate, and I now regret that, but the earlier posts were all about trying to get to the substance of the views expressed rather than worry about how they were expressed.

It was precisely because Dave's original post was coherent which caused me to pose the question of how he got to those views based on the facts as presented, as I could not see any link. I wouldn't have bothered if he had been one of the handful of ranting idiots, as the answer would not have been worth knowing!

anyway, there must be something else to discuss by now!

QueenBee

I couldn't care less about this artist or her rather dismal art but I do know that Disney images are subject to copyright and I don't suppose for a minute that the Disney Corporation would be too happy about their characters being displayed in any manner that might cause controversy. I would be very interested to know how the artist got round this!

Condor Toys

Please note that "Queen Bee" is a trademark of Condor Toys and if you are going to use our legally owned name to berate a young artist then we would like you to stop posting on TiG using it.

Please change your name to one NOT owned by an international corporation.

Or just be nice.

States House

Your "Queen Bee" has a space. The poster on heres name doesnt so haha, they win.

QueenBee

Thank you for your support States House. "Queen Bee" is a term used for the top female bee in a hive and it suits my purpose for this forum. How ridiculous to say it is a trademark. They will be telling you next that you can't use the name "States House" in case you offend people who live in them!

Condor Toys

QueenBee IS a trademark.

Why is it ridiculous to point this out? No more ridiculous than Disney Corp 'owning' the rights to a fairytale or a traditional story.

Please desist in associating our brand with your nonsense.

States House

Condor toys, dont be a spanner!

The trademark has a space!

The board game is "Queen Bee" you dunce.....

Prove me wrong with a link.

Beanjar

Good point, could be a problem especially as Disney song title used in title of artwork.

Ray

I have nothing to say really

I just wanted to have a shot at being the 200th poster on this non-subject

Liesja Grut

I really can't believe how cruel and unforgivable some of these comments are! We as an island should be encouraging our young degree students as they return to the Island to pave a career for themselves, not hindering them. No wonder so many local Artists either give up completley or comprise their work for hope of acceptance . As a Society, Guernsey really does lack acceptance within subject matters they have little or no knowledge of, Another classic reaction by the Guernsey public! When in doubt criticise!! These negative comments are nothing more than bullying!! Shame on you all!

Jules

Absolutely agree...

bcb

"As a Society, Guernsey really does lack acceptance within subject matters they have little or no knowledge of, Another classic reaction by the Guernsey public"

Or we could say another classic example of how someone responds to a few posts from half a dozen or so people.

States House

Bullying?

What do you call ringing the press and island fm to tell tales on 2 giggling 10 year olds?

Why not get their parnets point of view? See how happy they are at all this.

Thats if any of this is even true! It could just be a silly lie. There is no proof that this even happened.

Wil

Yes i agree States House. Must call into question the personal integrity of the artist if she needs attention so badly she is willing to publicly humiliate and shame 10 year old children to get it.

Beanjar

Does it really matter? Although the painting looks well done the characters are so androgenous the homosexual element is hardly overt. Its not like a couple of blokes from ZZ Top having a snog, now that would look a bit creepy.

I'mwatchingyou

Well done Sian Jones!! She has used the Tracey Emin trick of producing 'artwork' designed to shock - the fail-safe trick for untalented 'artists' to get their work noticed. I wonder if Sian can actually draw!?

Spartacus

I wonder if Tracey Emin can actually draw!

Pizza

Well, Ms Emin was appointed Professor of Drawing at the Royal Academy in 2011 so I guess she has some skills in that area.

Ain't necessarily so though!

Sarnia expat

By sycophants I would imagine.

Spartacus

The professor of drawing has "Limited technical ability" according to this article which says it all. http://www.channel4.com/news/tracey-emin-drawing-on-the-art-of-the-past

crocodile

Every post here is simply fuelling the artist's ego. The controversy that she seems to have deliberately triggered is a diversionary tactic to obscure the fact that the work itself is pretty mediocre. Time to move on, folks.

Island Strife

If she's that proud of her work, let her submit copies to Disney's Lawyers for approval - I'm sure they'd have a field day sueing her for using their copyrighted imagery of these CHILDRENS characters in such a controversial way.

CameraShy

Please tell me you’re not arguing this point because of the moral sanctity of Disney characters...

Aside from the instances of bestiality a couple of people have already mentioned, Disney primarily spins tales about infanticidal stepmothers, enforced servitude, the kidnap and imprisonment of minors, theft, bribery and all manner of deceptions. And that’s without mentioning all the ugly emotions behind each of those actions.

By all means argue the copyright-infringement point, but don’t do it on the grounds of it being ‘controversial’, because a couple of homosexual characters would be the least of Disney’s problems.

In fact, if anybody is worried about protecting their kids from ‘controversial’ issues, keep them away from Disney films altogether.

Just because it’s a cartoon, it doesn’t mean it’s for kids. Anyone who’s watched any manga films (or South Park et al) will tell you that...

Island Strife

CameraShy - Really ?

Just because it's a cartoon doesn't mean it's for kids ?

This has nothing to do with the moral sanctity of Disney characters !

Like milions of others, I grew up with Disney films from a young age.

If your points are to be believed, I now consider myself extremely lucky that I wasn't scarred for life from watching these "controversial" films you refer to.

And likening them to Manga with its overtly sexual imagery and Southpark with its singing poo characters and the like really has no place as a retort to my original post.

It merely backs my point up, that using Disney characters in this way IS controversial.

Manga and Southpark ARE adult cartoons - that's the difference.

There would be no story if it was a painting of Cartman kissing Chef would there ?

Point proven - good night.

Guernsey1-2-1

I see two major themes here, Art and Homophobia, and have problems with each.

Defining Art is like trying to nail jelly to the wall. Nevertheless I've added my contribution here:-

http://guernsey1-2-1.blogspot.com/2012/06/can-you-tell-what-it-is-yet.html

As to the homophobia, I try here to understand where each side is coming from :-

http://guernsey1-2-1.blogspot.com/2012/06/nowt-so-queer-as-folk.html

Apologies for the redirection but my comments are a bit too long to post directly without inflicting serious scroll injury.

Cabbage

What has happened is no different to kids going to church or scouts or junior tennis. Every group wants to attract children at an early age and teach them their own discipline. By using well known childrens characters, they will grow up to accept that it is okay to be gay. Some will grow up to follow the ten commands, some will want to tie knots and light fires and others will want to kiss their mates. Is it a big deal. When they get to school they have reading books with all that stuff in anyway and later on they will be taught about same sex stuff in Social Studies.

You have to give gay people credit for their campaining, they are far more go-ahead than their heterosexual counterparts.

States House

Campaigning?

What for?

Recruiting?

They are accepted otherwise that rubbish picture wouldnt have been allowed up.

They arent Jahovas witnesses.... Campaigning!!!?

Dani

Comments like this really are quite scary.

States House

What is scary about it?

Cabbage says this picture is a campaign. A campaign for what? If they mean acceptance of gays. Well the picture itself was accepted! It was put up with no fuss and no fuss has been made about the pictures sexuality "issue" other than by the artist themselves who has yet to prove that anyone actually complained about it because no one has complained to the media about it. The only complaints iv seen on the picture is of the quality.

Terry Langlois

States House, I think (hope) that Dani was referring to Cabbage's bizarre idea that homosexuality is some sort of party political party which is able to campaign for new members (which, as you pointed out is ridiculous)

Cabbage

@ States House

I don't think that gay people are generally accepted, maybe in certain professions and circles but not all. If they were, it would not cause so much uproar when they want to do things like get married or get physical with younger people. By depicting these cartoon characters as gay, it plants a seed of acceptance in the minds of tomorrows generation and so when they grow up, they will just think its normal. Trying to change this generation is very difficult, we have loads of tv celebrities and popstars etc that try to make being gay acceptable, but it does not really work. By aiming at the next generation using imagery that is understood by them, they will naturally grow up accepting same sex activity as the norm.

Mr States House - if you really think that being gay is accepted, try working on a building site or visiting certain sports clubs or even some churches. If you are openly gay and actively pursuing a relationship, you must work in a very sheltered environment.

You talk about the jahovas, try snogging your partner during the last hymn, I don't think you will find they will warm to you.

Terry Langlois

you are either a troll or a dinosaur

Homosexuality may still be an issue on building sites or within certain sports, but that is the problem which needs to be fixed, not the wider general acceptance within society that two consenting adults should be allowed to love each other regardless of gender.

Even the FA is waking up to the institutional homophobia within football (evidenced by the absence of any openly gay footballer in the top tier since Justin Fashanu) and it is starting to try to stamp it out in the same way that it has fairly successfully done with racism.

I see that you trot out the old cliche and gay men preying on younger people. Did you know that the majority of convicted peadophiles are heterosexual? Trying to suggest that homosexuality is bad because of peadophilia does not work - you may as well say that being Catholic is bad because of peadophilia.

Cabbage

Terry I don't really know what you are on about, you are a bit all over the place.

Maz

Well done to Sian Jones on provoking discussion. After all that is what art is all about isn't it? Some will dislike it others, like myself will commend it.

I thought the pieces were well executed.

Why should two men or women kissing cause such indignation by some? Are they anti-love. After all a kiss is sign of affection. It conveys love.

To some homosexuality is "unnatural". Yet it is present in the "natural" world.

For me, I knew I was gay when I was eight years old, but suffered the slings and arrows by the more outrageous and misinformed in our society that it was somehow perverse and unChristian. For someone brought up in a Christian household, I used to apologise to God for who I was every time I stepped into Church. I felt depressed, suicidal at times, and just isolated in a small community such as ours.

40 years on, and after a significant life-changing event, I told my family, priest and friends about my sexuality. I had finally conquered my fears, and did not care what other people felt.

Since then I have met the man of my dreams, am married to him (well as "married" as we can be under present laws - under a civil partnership, which we had to go away to have).

As for God. I judged God when stepping into Church. God is a God of love. He accepts everyone for who they are, no matter of race, sex, sexual orientation, or creed.

The Bible was written by Man for Man. The passages the Bible bashers use against homosexuality, are laws written at the time by the Levis, etc. Laws change, as hopefully ours will one day to treat everyone as equals, and not persecute minorities through discrimination.

The Nazis took such homophobic propeganda to the most evil level, by interning and killing 50,000 homosexuals in the Second World War. Forced to wear pink tringles they were sent to concentration camps. Everyone is horrified about the treatment of the Jews, but what about the holocaust against homosexuals?

I thank Sian for being brave enough to stand up and be counted with her thought provoking art. That people are offended by a simple kiss, shows ignorance. However, hopefully such people will be open-minded enough to change their opinions. And for those children who were in the same position I was over thirty years ago, maybe they will see through her art that being different is not a bad thing. Diversity should be celebrated not condemned.

States House

For the umpteenth time no one has complained about the kiss!

Show me an interview in the media from a disgruntled homophobe about this picture. If the sexuality of it had caused the supposed uproar that you believe it has then while it was gladly let to be put on show to the general public surely someone would have complained about it? All we have is the artists word that two kids laughed at it. Hardly a nazi campaign and to even bring up what they did alongside this is ridiculous!

Some are content to live their lives happily and accepted others seem to want a reaction all the time, as the artist herself says and has had to make storys up to get in the paper.

Terry Langlois

yes, but I think that this debate has moved on to be more about some of the views expressed within the debate, rather than the original article

Sian Jones

States house are you gay?

Maz

Dear States House,

If it is not a debate over portrayal over images of people of the same-sex kissing then what is all this fuss over?

My point was that the fuss from certain people in our community who are clearly homophobic, is the thin end of the wedge.

Walk in the shoes of a child who knows its gay, as it grows up through adolescence, having to listen and be subject to prejudicial remarks in the playground, on the football pitch, at work and at home, and you will soon realise what it is like.

No one choses to be gay, but certain people wish to go go on a crusade against gay people. This is the thin end of the wedge. It leads to depression and suicide (higher than in heterosexuals) and in society can lead to tyrranous regimes which actively persecute gay people like the Nazis and certain countries in the present day, which hang you if you are gay.

From art comes discussion abouot issues in society and hopefully enlightenment.

Thats all!

What's so wrong?

I really don't see why everyone is so up in arms over this. There must really be a massive generation gap, because I really can't see why anyone would be offended by this. It's a statement on society's views and challenges us to all reconsider our opinions and actually see that life is diverse. I'm so sick of people saying that this is "perverse" and whatever, because it really isn't. The main problem here is that Guernsey hasn't yet moved in to the 21st century, and so demonstrates the whole point of this piece of art!

Moreover, you people who claim this is going to "distress young children" are obviously not in touch with what is on modern tv programming nowadays. There is enough LGBT imagery in modern tv that it is impossible for children to not have seen something, and because they have seen it at a young age, they have accepted it, unlike all you "adults". A prime example of LGBT themes in a modern children's programme is in Doctor Who! In the mid-season finale of the most recent series, two characters who come to the Doctor's aid are lesbians and involved with each other. My 5 year old cousin saw no issue with this. Then not to mention countless other themes of a similar nature. I really think it's ridiculous that people should be up in arms about this offending children. If anything, the people who are offended are just too stuck in their archaic ways to stop bashing rocks together and actually see that times have moved on since the stone ages and that people have become accepting of other lifestyles.

Terry Langlois

"everyone" is not up in arms. there is little evidence that anyone is, apart from a few posts on this forum

Scarlett

oh for goodness sake, WSW, READ the thread before you comment!!!

'Everyone' is not 'up in arms' about the content of this image and most couldn't give a monkey's who's kissing who - in the real world or in this piece - !

What IS being debated is whether it's OK for this artist to get Press not because of the quality of her work, but for for calling 2 kids homophobes because they giggled at her children's cartoon characters kissing (surprise reaction. Not), why on EARTH some consider we aren't allowed to dislike her work without being considered 'homophobic' and if the one or two negative remarks on here means the island is over run with pitchfork wielding homophobes...

which, like the work, is utter tosh.

Spartacus

Sorry Scarlet but this work is disliked by some not because it displeases them in colour, line, form or design but purely because it offends them to see same sex characters kissing.

I don't know for sure but I reckon the girls giggled purely because of the same sex kissing. This surely is a symptom of homophobia? Since phobia's are irrational fears which make us feel uncomfortable should they not be explained to children to help them feel at ease?

I agree that you have hit the nail on the head over what this is about and I am just interested to hear why you might think it is wrong to say so when children are being homophobic. Is it because of the undertones of hatred and persecution which is present in adult homophobia but not children?

bcb

If you took the time to read through the posts which you obviously have not then you would see just how silly your post is.

Who is up in arms apart from you and your false claims? More drama.

Funny thing is is that its posts like yours that give the impression that Guernsey is intolerant and needs dragging into the 21st century which i`m still trying to work out what that means and where do we look for a glowing example of how things should be.

Maybe you can tell us?

Neil Forman

What's so wrong

I have no issue with the homosexual / heterosexual aspect of this story. This is down to the individual and does not bother me either way. All people are different from one another, how they choose to live their life is up to them.

The issue is the artist branding children homophobic for laughing, a pathetic publicity stunt in my mind. I think these paintings were targeted for this type of reaction.

As to the artwork, hand on heart I would not know good art if it came up and slapped me in the face. They look ok to me but I am no expert.

Spartacus

Neil Forman

You raise some interesting points. Were the girls laughing because the characters were kissing or were they laughing because they were kissing characters of the same sex? Surely it was the latter? Is it wrong to say the girls are homophobic just because they are children? If they were adults would you say they were homophobic for behaving that way? What if the characters were real live people - would you still think laughing at them was OK?

One thing which is clear is that you feel the girls should not be homophobic. Surely this experience of being made aware of their homophobic behaviour has therefore helped them?

Rachel

Spartacus, this was already done with a range of "real live people" as part of a recent Benetton ad campaign.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/arts-post/post/obama-kisses-chavez-in-new-benetton-ad/2011/11/16/gIQAB91oRN_blog.html

It seems to me that the artist may have ripped this idea from the Benetton adverts and just inserted Disney characters with the label "original".

In this case, i believe the real shock value lay in those known characters, who are known for acting a certain way, acting out of character. If it were unknown characters, for example, two unknown original cartoon characters of the same sex, kissing for instance, there would be no "issue" at all (if there is really an issue) and definitely no shock value. Would the children have giggled at unknown characters? Would they have even looked? Probably not. Perhaps the same could be said of the Benetton ad?

bcb

So the kids laughing make them homophobic?.

As we can see from many comments on here if anyone dare have an opinion or any concerns you will be branded homophobic.

Maybe we should be more concerned with this artists paranoia of two little girls have a giggle then branding them homophobic.

Neil Forman

Spartacus

For a person who I normally deem as switched on you have totally missed the point here.

The children laughed because they are CHILDREN. They would have recognised the characters depicted in the paintings and being ten years old would have laughed, I would expect this from any child it is normal behaviour at that age. The homosexual issue here is irrelevant. My daughter is fourteen and still tells the wife and I to get a room if she sees us kissing when I go to work or when I return.

If the characters were real people they probably would have the same reaction.

I don't think the girls should should be classed as homophobic, I doubt they even know the meaning of the word. why rob them of their childhood innocence?

You know how I feel about children and how they should be nurtured and allowed to develop their own 'character' without this kind of pressure which they probably would not understand.

As I have said before I think this was a publicity stunt by the artist using paintings that she thought would shock and produce this kind of debate. When it didn't go to plan she picked on two children to prove her point. This I feel is totally wrong and is abusing these children for her own gains.

Had this been my daughter at ten years old the artist would have got a reaction, not the one she would have wanted.

Spartacus

bcb

yes of course it is homophobic, why else would they be giggling? The important thing is that they were innocently oblivious of their homophobia, it is unlikely adults would giggle as most adults are aware that homophobia is not funny.

I think giggling is a perfectly natural reaction for the children in a culture where homosexual behaviour is kept under wraps and therefore children are not accustomed to it. That's why I think this art and the publicity is a great opportunity to raise awareness.

There seems to be a paradox in your comment because clearly you do not want anyone to be "branded homophobic" and yet those who clearly are homophobic on this thread seem to make no apology for it.

Spartacus

Neil Forman

Thanks for the backhanded compliment!

If a 10 year old is old enough to understand that adults kiss they are old enough to understand that adults of any gender kiss. I would hope they would not laugh at real people do you not think it is rude and offensive to laugh at people?

You could be right that they would have giggled irrespective of the gender but I know there is homophobia in children and bullying. Are you telling me your children have not encountered any?

It's not just at school, admittedly more so at secondary, I have witnessed it on the streets, beaches, everywhere especially by young boys calling each other gayboy and all sorts of comments. It is shocking and far from the idealistic nurturing you and me both would like.

I applaud the artist for raising awareness in a much more civilised way and for challenging the girls' reactions whether she has done so for altruistic or personal reasons. Pointing out homophobia is not abusive in my opinion, as you say they are innocent and homophobic is something they would not want to be, so where is the harm in pointing this out to them?

bcb

"yes of course it is homophobic, why else would they be giggling? The important thing is that they were innocently oblivious of their homophobia, it is unlikely adults would giggle as most adults are aware that homophobia is not funny".

Dear god i give up.

Carry on without me i really cant get on your level of logic if you think two kids laughing means their homophobic and they dont even know it.

Bonkers springs to mind and you haven`t got a clue what these kids think about same sex relationships but you still brand them homophobic.

Shame on you.

PLP

Spartacus

My wife and I get some interesting reactions from our 2 (going on 3) year old daughter when we kiss and cuddle. If we follow your train of thought that makes her an innocently oblivious heterophobe, along with the vast majority of children whose parents display any kind of affection. As an intelligent parent surely you can see how paper thin your argument is?

Homophobia is defined as an "irrational fear of, aversion to, or discrimination against homosexuality or homosexuals." A couple of 10 year olds giggling who don't even know about homosexuality can hardly be placed in this category.

I'm afraid people like you seem to see "homophobia" under every rock. If being a "homophobe" is defending the right of a child to behave like a child without being branded then I will wear the label with pride. I wonder if my gay friends think the same though....

PLP

Spartacus

"I would hope they would not laugh at real people do you not think it is rude and offensive to laugh at people?"

I totally agree, but that is teaching children not to be rude, it's got nothing to do with sexuality or homophobia.

The same applies to bullying, children should be taught that picking on others for being different (whether that be gender, race, sexuality, religion or the colour of your shoes) is wrong full stop. Again, nothing to do with sexuality specifically, everything to do with teaching children to be good members of society.

Spartacus

plp

thanks for your comment and I read your other one too. I think Sian's incredibly moving letter to the press does explain why she feels so strongly about the importance of teaching acceptance to children from an early age and I agree this is no more about sex education than learning about the birds and the bees which most children learn when they are toddlers. Homophobia is a long word but it is not an adult word it describes an inappropriate reaction to same gender affection it does not describe a sex act.

Spartacus

bcb

Maybe you are right, maybe the girls felt completely at ease and comfortable with the same sex affection depicted in the artwork. Perhaps they were laughing at the black man.

PLP

Spartacus - I guess I just don't consider two 10 year old girls giggling at this painting an inappropriate reaction given their age. In my mind what you're suggesting is no different to accusing little girls who say they want to marry their Daddies (quite common I'm led to believe) of being incestuous.

If they were a few years older then I'd be far more inclined to agree with you, but unlike you it seems I simply don't expect children to behave like adults.

Lets get the facts straight

PLP

It is very obviously inappropriate for a girl of any age to have ideas about marrying their daddy and surely a daddy should be very quick to point that out to her.

So yes what I am suggesting is no different and I maintain the view that inappropriate behaviour in children should be tackled as soon as it arises whatever the age. No one says it is easy.

I don't expect children to behave like adults but surely our task as parents, teachers, community, is to teach them to become mature, responsible and considerate citizens of the future.

PLP

Obviously, but it's the manner these things are pointed out that's the issue here. I'm no psychological expert but clearly there is a balance between guiding children gently but firmly towards holistic health and emotionally crushing them by stamping down on behaviour that, whilst entirely inappropriate for adults, is part of normal childhood development.

The example of "I want to marry my Daddy" is a good one here. I understand this is a common thing amongst young girls (by which I'm broadly talking about early primary school age) that is part of a child learning their place in the world. Yes of course it shouldn't be encouraged, but it's not dangerous - it just needs gentle guidance.

The manner in which you write sounds like you would sit young children down and given them a finger-wagging lecture rather than offer gentle guidance, but perhaps I've misunderstood you. It won't be the first time - Internet forums are not the ideal place for this kind of discussion as the breadth of communication is very limited.

bcb

Spartacus your post 9.40am is awsome i still can`t stop laughing.

What do you think will happen if we don`t point this out to lets say a 5yr old as soon as this inappropriate behaviour kicks in?.

Will they not grow up to become mature, responsible and considerate citizens of the future?.

I think they will eventually learn this is not the way it works as they become more mature? maybe by the time their 8yrs old with a bit of luck:).

When my daughter was very young she wanted to grow up to be just like the telltubbies i never told her it was inappropriate behaviour and guess what? she is now a telltubbie.

Na not really, I think she worked it out for herself.

Spartacus

PLP

That's a bit below the belt Paul, I'm an avid debater as you know but yes there is a big difference between my anonymous debating style and my personal skills with children. I'm not going to get overly defensive about your comment but I will say I encourage independent thinking and that process would be undermined by finger wagging style lectures. Perhaps I need to deal with some other commenters in the same way I treat children! I'm not sure if that's what you are getting at!

Anyway isn't art a classic way of gently guiding children towards holistic health? That would be the nub of this debate in my opinion.

Regarding the daddy thing, I think we will have to agree to disagree about whether it is dangerous, in my opinion it could be. Also I'm not convinced that little girls don't need to know about ugly words like homophobia and incestuous. Nevertheless as ever I am grateful for the insight of yours and others' views.

Spartacus

bcb

I'm still lmao at your homophobic comment about male boxers.

Anyway in answer to your question, what I think would happen if we don't correct children at primary age is the situation that we have got which is that there is rampant homophobic bullying in our secondary schools, and evidently this attitude lives on in some of our adults.

PLP

Spartacus - that comment wasn't meant as a blow below the belt. All I was saying was that your style of debate on here makes it sound like you would wag the finger at children.

Clearly from your post that's not your style, in fact your style sounds quite similar to my own....and in my defence I did conclude my post by saying that I may have totally misunderstood you.

PLP

PS Spartacus - if there's one thing I hate it's being lectured by know-nothing-know-it-alls about how I should bring up my children or what parenting style I use.

Parenting is difficult enough without that - and as a fellow parent I'm sure you feel the same way, so if you got the impression that's what I was doing I'm happy to apologise for any offence caused.

Spartacus

PLP

No offence taken, good debate.

Neil Forman

Spartacus

Young girls who say they want to marry daddy.

Sorry I agree with Paul here, it is common in young girls.

Most fathers will show a deep love for their children and will spoil them rotten, they also make them feel safe and secure and provide them with a happy environment.

You have to remember that they are young, you don't need to jump down their throats for saying this. A simple ' you can't marry daddy because...) will suffice.

Any young girl who says this obviously feels very secure and I would see this as doing a good job as a father. There are no undertones to this kind of statement, it is just typical child behaviour.

I would not consider this as incestuous thoughts, it is just childhood innocence.

Neil Forman

Spartacus

You're welcome, that College education did you proud.

Yes a ten year old is old enough to know that adults kiss and will probably react the same way whatever the sexes are doing the kissing. I cannot believe a child of ten woud hold homophobic tendencies.

Yes I have encountered bullying in my children ( primary school ) and stamped on it instantly, if my daughter hurts, I hurt.

I am very open with my daughter and if she asks a question she will get a honest answer whatever the subject. I actually showed her this post a few nights ago and she could see no problem with it at all. My daughter knows she can speak to me about anything openly, I like to think that she will not stew over something or get worried about anything if she can talk without me being judgemental.

I agree that the artist should be applauded for bringing the topic up, I just think she is wrong to do this on the back of young children.

Spartacus

Neil Forman

My college education may have served me well but all the evidence, and there's a lot of it suggests I would have done just as well in a comprehensive!

In her letter to the press, the artist has clarified her reasons why she believes children should be educated not to be homophobic and she has graphically explained the dangers of homophobia in children. I know about the bullying that goes on, it is shocking, I also know how difficult life can be for gay people in Guernsey and what they endure. I would want to change our culture to a more accepting one which has nothing to do with shattering childhood innocence.

I have some insight into your views due to comments on previous threads and detect that you may be fearful of children becoming gay unnecessarily. Correct me if I'm wrong. My view is that there is little we can do to control our children's sexuality. Where we agree is that we will love our children no matter what and the basis of my argument is that we should teach our children to extend that sentiment to the wider community.

PLP

Loving our children no matter what - absolutely.

Nothing more to be said.

Neil Forman

Spartacus

You may be fearful of children becoming gay unnecessarily?

I remember the post you are on about, I have never said that. I think you will find that you came to that conclusion about me. ( wrongly ).

My daughter will be free to see whoever she wants to, it's her life not mine. Male, female, coloured or white doesn't matter to me. As long as she is happy then so am I.

As PLP says loving our children no matter what. Could not have said it any better:-)

St Marcouf

Sentiments of a homophobic and racist nature, amongst others, are hard-wired in humans so the liberal elite will never succeed in eradicating them even if it succeeds in vilifying people to repress them.

Also, so-called archaic views expressed in Guernsey on issues such as homosexuality are no different to the views expressed anywhere else - go into deepest darkest Sussex or the back streets of London and the views expressed will be identical.

Spartacus

St Marcouf

The point is as intelligent humans living in a civilised society we should strive to behave towards one another in a way which promotes mutual respect and tolerance. We do not have to be ruled by our feelings and cannot therefore use them to justify unpleasant behaviour towards others. Behaving in a racist or homophobic way and expressing such views publicly is unacceptable behaviour in society.

Jeffers

Once again, we have a group of individuals attempting to discredit others by the "magic phrase" 21st century.

Many people see the tragedy associated with certain trends in circulation at this present time and prefer to stick with tried, tested and successful principals of yesterday.

There is an anvil of truth which has worn out many hammers over the past centuries and your hammer will be no different.

A.J.

I think 'Scarlett',has said it all.Now please can we all get back to sanity?

Cabbage

A.J.

I think there are another 30 opinions aired, how do you work out that Scarlett has "said it all" ?

Who has gone insane?

PLP

Having read Sian Jones letter to the GP this morning, I have one final comment to make.

I have no issue whatsoever with Sian displaying her paintings and explaining her reasons why to adults, she has every right to do so. My one objection is that she attempted an impromptu PSHE lesson about "homophobia" to two blissfully ignorant girls.

Not only is it the role of parents to explain such things, it is also their decision to choose when is an appropriate time to address matters of sexuality with their children - some mature quicker than others and parents are best placed to know when that time is. Also, these issues are wide ranging and cannot be explained in a five minute conversation over a piece of cartoon artwork. How do you explain homophobia to a child who doesn't even know about homosexuality?

I will raise my child(ren) as best I can to treat people well, whether they agree with their beliefs / lifestyles or not. What I won't accept is someone with a personal agenda usurping my right as a parent by making the decision when they should be exposed to issues of sexuality.

Finally, I'd like to wish Sian Jones all the best for the future. She's clearly had an extremely difficult time over recent years.

PLP

Just to avoid misunderstanding - I maintain my view that the paintings in themselves were innocuous and inoffensive both to adults and children. It's the accompanying explanation that I believe was age-inappropriate.

Spartacus

PLP

I thought I was overprotective! I suggest you keep your child under lock and key, draw the curtains and switch off the tv, home schooling might suit you best too. Impromptu PSCHE lessons are everywhere. Good question though so what exactly would you say and do if your child was inadvertently exposed to the word homophobia? Pretend it was a made up word like gobbledygook?

Neil Forman

Spartacus

The children were ten years old and PLP is right, it should be the parents decision to explain about the birds and the bees when they see fit.

As I have already said I don't think these children laughed because the paintings were same sex kissing and I would be surprised if they even knew the word homophobic. For the artist to just label them as such is totally wrong.

Lets get the facts straight

Neil Forman

Th artist did not label them homophobic, as she explained in her letter to the press.

We can only speculate about why the girls laughed, their level of understanding of birds and bees etc.

PLP

Spartacus, I think we've finally found a post we can both entirely agree on!

PLP

Young children are routinely exposed to adult words and activities all the time. That doesn't mean they have to all be explained or demonstrated in explicit detail straight away. When a young child first asks a parent "what is money?" they aren't given the lowdown on fiscal policy; or when asked "what is sex?" they don't normally start off with a full biology lesson, a copy of Playboy or an invitation to watch Mummy and Daddy next time they make love. It normally starts off with a very innocuous explanation which gradually progresses the older they get. The same would apply to issues like homosexuality, how it would be dealt with would depend on the circumstances, the child's age at the time and their level of maturity.

Obviously there are times when inadvertent exposure is unavoidable, as you say to stop that we'd have to lock up our children and throw away the key - far more psychologically harmful in the long term. Nevertheless, I make no apology for seeking to take reasonable measures to limit my child's exposure to issues I consider inappropriate for her age.

Actually most parents agree that gradual, progressive, age-appropriate exposure to various aspects of life is a sensible way to raise children. The debate is what is considered age-appropriate - and on that there are as many ideas as there are children. I guarantee that if we compared notes, you and I would probably find some issues where you are more conservative, and others where I am. It's a complicated job raising kids as I'm sure you know!

Lets get the facts straight

PLP

We are not talking about explicit sex education we are talking about explaining public displays of affection which is permitted in public between any two individuals.

PLP

In which case I don't think sexuality has to even enter an explanation, at least not initially for young children anyway.

As I said in a previous post many moons ago, physical displays of affection (including kissing between two people of the same gender) aren't necessarily sexual. Even in British culture (which is generally neutral) there is the weekly ritual of overtly public same sex affection on the football pitch, watched by countless children.

Here's a hypothesis. Perhaps the issue here is less about homophobia and more about the quintessentially stuck up British habit of turning our noses up at any kind of public affection whilst attaching a sexual connotation to anything and everything? Ironic actually that in large swathes of the Middle East, public displays of same sex affection such as holding hands are considered perfectly normal - even in highly conservative Islamic states.

Neil Forman

PLP

One word needed for that post, BRILLIANT!

bcb

Paul i wouldn`t bother debating this with Spartacus if i were you. you make far more sense than she does.

She just keeps twisting what people say as she did with my post and i`m starting to think she does it because she likes to argue for the sake of it or one that can never admit to being wrong. Hence twisting what others say to make her own posts look more valid.

Funny that there is not one post on this as far as i can see calling these two kids homophobic apart from Spartacus, not even Sian has accused them of this.

Lets get the facts straight

bcb

If anyone laughs at same sex couples it is homophobic behaviour IN MY OPINION.

You cannot seem to understand that others might have a view different to your own and seem to lack the skills for intelligent debate therefore resort to personal attack.

If you really believe children cannot be homophobic you must be under a rock. If you think that children should be permitted to be homophobic, shame on you.

Spartacus

PLP

Spartacus, I think I finally see a ray of light here! I reckon we can come to an agreement. Most people accept that mocking same sex couples is homophobic behaviour - I think we can all agree on that.

However, can you accept that not every act of laughing at a same sex couple is homophobic, any more than laughing at parental displays of affection is heterophobic (is there such a word?!) particularly when it involves young children?

In my opinion each case should be looked at in its own right based on the maturity, knowledge and age of the people involved. You yourself commented earlier to Neil Forman that we could only speculate at the level of knowledge / maturity of these two girls. The same act committed by two different people can be driven by broadly different views and motives.

Spartacus

PLP

Yes there are definite rays of light here!

Girls giggle at many things but parents kissing is just cringe. Disney characters of different race and same gender kissing is something that anyone needs to get their head around and would surely make girls giggle for one reason or another which we can speculate about and have done. Th girls themselves know why and have surely had time to think about their reaction. I hope they were not psychologically damaged in any way by the artwork or the word homophobia as used by the artist.

Neil Forman

Spartacus, PLP

It has taken a long, long time but I think we are finally there:-)

Must congratulate Sian Jones here, this post has really bought about a very good debate. If you are still reading this thread Sian congratulations. Hope all goes well for you in the future.

bcb

Oh dear more twisting of words.

Personal attack? haha and you brand two kids homophobic for laughing without knowing the reason, pot and kettle.

Now it`s just an opinion that they are homophobic but you have said that their behaviour is that of a homophobic which makes them homophobic. I think you should get your facts straight before sticking such a damning label on two kids that you most likely know nothing about.

You then respond to Neil by saying we can only speculate why they were laughing. So at least you admit you dont know what they were laughing at which is exactly what i said in an earlier post but you responded by telling me with obviuos sarcasm that they could have been laughing at the black man.

Another point, where did i say children cannot be homophobic and where did i say it should be permitted?.

As for intelligence well i have enough to see that those girls could have been laughing for more than one reason which you couldn`t up until your response to neil.

Yes indeed lets get the facts straight starting with not responding to what people haven`t said.

I have changed my view on many things reading through posts from the likes of PLP Terry GM but don`t always agree with everything they say.

If i saw Mike Tyson kissing Lennox Lewis i would find that bloody funny so i must be homophobic to eh?.

Shame on me.

Spartacus

bcb

This is a fascinating debate where various ideas and thoughts have been thrown about giving us all lots to thinks about. I like that and I applaud the artist for giving us this opportunity - this is what I love about art.

I am sorry you have taken offense to my line of thought or the way I have communicated, I have no problem with the girls, I certainly don't think I have given them a damning label, I suspect most girls in Guernsey of that age would react the same way, many children in Guernsey are homophobic and whether they are aware of it or not many see no harm in the behaviour, or seek to justify it and are oblivious to the pain and suffering it causes to those who are actually gay or those who are taunted but who are not gay.

My views are also often changed when reading the comments of others on this forum. PLP is a very good example of someone with strong views but who remains civil and respects others' views.

I don't know if you are homophobic but if two gay boxers were kissing I wouldn't laugh at them if I were you.

PLP

Thank you for your last sentence Spartacus, made me laugh out loud!

bcb

Ah but Spartacus you said those girls were homophobic so why dont you know if i am or not for saying i would do pretty much the same thing as they did.

Why do you (i think thats what your suggesting)assume they would be offended? maybe they would see it as i would. Just the wow factor and who would have thought Tyson and Lewis kissing.

See how things can be taken out of context? just like i think you have done with these two kids.

I used to box myself and i can tell you they are mostly the kind of people that wouldn`t react in they way i think your suggesting but we won`t get into that.

Calco

Don't you people with gender problems moan a lot. Everybody cops comments from people, if you are disabled, ginger, fat, a Man Utd supporter, a Methodist, a Jew, an Irishmen, even a politician.

All of the above (and many more) are regular targets for the brunt of jokes and ridicule which can, and often does develop into bullying. Why is it that your little group tantrum and seek to label and abuse anyone who will not agree with your code of conduct.

Yes, some of you were born with hormonal imbalances, that is very sad and should not be mocked or ridiculed. Others have been born with other challenging traits, but they do not whinge and complain like you do.

Before writing your next negative comment in an attempt to raise your self esteem at the expense of others, think of the many physically and mentally handicapped that have fought against all the odds and have made something of themselves. These people have been mocked and excluded from an early age and yet, very rarely do they complain anything like you do.

The majority do not have a problem with people born with a hormonal imbalance, but many are fed up with having homosexuality rammed down their throats and made public, every few months you launch a new propaganda campaign and anyone who does not swallow it is insulted and when you realise that you are not winning, the word homophobic comes out as if its a trump card.

Yes, you have problems, and I'm sorry about that, but like all of the rest of us, you have to deal with it.

Spartacus

Calco

"homosexuality rammed down our throats and made public"

are you objecting to public displays of affection or just between homosexuals? Are you suggesting affection in art should not be depicted or just same gender affection? What is it exactly that YOU are moaning about? Too much equality?

I don't think that it would be necessary for anyone to use the trump card on you as your prejudice is very apparent.

vic gamble

....quick run...the jazz police have got hold of these threads and they are becoming fed up with the whole thing...what a lot of trouble you folk have taken to debate nothing...

States House

I just read an opinion on here that theartist wrote a recent letter in saying she didnt mention homophobia to the children? Well, I deffinitely heard her on island fm saying she told the children that what they were doing was homophobic. If anyone can be bothered to get the clip theyll hear the same.

Lets get the facts straight

I can't find the Island FM clip, I think it's past, but in her letter she said "I would never accuse a child of being a homophobe – all I did was try to explain to the children why I painted the pictures. I used the word ‘homophobia’ while telling them my reason. They obviously didn’t understand what that word meant and before I had a chance to explain, they ran off."

States House

I know children that have been to the uk and seen men in turbans and got excited and thought they were aladin. Now, if someone stood in front of them and started lecturing them that if you acknowledge that someone else is different you are discriminating them and this could be racism, id tell them to grow up and p*ss off! Has the woman got nothing better to do than allow children or anyone their own opinion on a crap picture? If she wants to be a gay rights activist do it the right way and campaign, although no one cares eitherway over here (the proof being the lack of negative comment on the pictures subject), rather than lurking behind a disney rip off that only attracts the attention of children.