Love Has No Gender! And Hate Is A Pure Choice!
Disclaimer: this post is around 3000 words! So, it needs around 15 minutes to read.
June is “the pride month” as I recently knew, probably I heard it before but maybe I thought that why certain feelings need a month? So the information was dropped probably from my brain! We are whom we are and we feel what we feel and we are free as long as we’re not hurting anyone or imposing anything on anyone. So simple!
Nice words of course but the practice and reality are really disgusting and they are not simple at all.
Why choosing June as a pride month?
The month of June was chosen for LGBT Pride Month to commemorate the riots held by members of the LGBT community against a police raid that took place at the Stonewall Inn in New York City on June 28, 1969.
The so-called Stonewall riots were a “tipping point” for the gay liberation movement in the United States, according to the Library of Congress. The uproar also paved the way for the modern fight for LGBT rights. Previous presidents of the United States have, on several occasions, officially declared June as LGBT Pride Month.
I don’t want this post to be from Google and bringing you information about gays and LGBTQ community and the latest decisions and accomplishments, so I’ll stop here with Google information and refer to a post some fellow blogger posted months ago and she said while speaking about her little daughter “I want her to grow up in a world where ‘gay relationships’ are just referred to as ‘relationships…” and she discussed how we judge that a person is a straight or not from some points that we decide.
And at the time my reply was:
“I want that too! Because I believe love has no gender and it’s really useless to keep fighting people because of their sexual orientations! I mean why you don’t fight people for loving or hating this kind of food or clothes or…!
And assumptions or playing the smart ass is not right, actually it’s judging, not only on this subject, I believe it is in all aspects of life, we judge that this person is bad, sad, stupid…etc…And on this subject in particular, it’s so hard because people are having double lives…
For an example I live in a country that most people rather you have cancer than being gay so how many people will be bold enough to come out? None! Some stay true to their selves, even if they will stay alone and others get married and have children…But they either have an affair secretly, or they just don’t…They just flirt maybe or more…And I can only imagine what kind of misery they live in!”
This was my opinion and still of course, because it’s happening on daily basis.
Just because we’re women or men, people decide what we love!
No I don’t have to tell you: hey I’m homosexual, or whatever name it is from LGBTQ names, do you meet people by telling them: hey I’m straight? It’s enough to say “Interested” “Not interested” I don’t need labels at all!
But of course declaring your identity is even better “if you know your identity for sure” and you’re not confused or if you have the privilege to declare this identity without being rejected and whipped by each and every person in your life! If you have this privilege, please do it!
I wrote this post mainly to speak about a person I really admired and respected and he was murdered on November 26th 2018 here in Lebanon: Gavin Ford.
Gavin Ford is a British citizen; he arrived in Lebanon in 1995. He worked as a radio host and worked also in voice over field and it happens that part of my work is voice over casting and recording in different languages for TV commercials since we work mainly on TV commercials so I know all the VO talents in Lebanon and it’s always easier to record with foreigners resident in Lebanon than recording with UK and USA for English dialect and same for all other dialects such as French, Egyptian, Saudi, Urdu….and these accents are not found in Lebanon.
I met Gavin in 2005 maybe or before. I called him for a VO session at the time and he used to come more often because the workflow was very good years ago. But I started to deal with voice over talents directly in 2007-2008.
His morning show: “Gavin in The morning” at “Radio One” Lebanese Radio station was the most successful show and kept running for more than 20 years until his death!
Gavin was always kind and gentle and he charged for recording a TV commercial less than all the talents here in Lebanon, even less than his fellow British talents resident in Lebanon.
Of course from the moment he stepped in the company I started to hear that “too bad he’s gay” and sentences like that, but I didn’t actually care, and anyway I’m not the kind that believes anything I hear especially judgments and accusations, regardless the fact that being gay is a pure right, for me it’s not an accusation, he’s free (for them it was) but why would I believe what people say anyway? This is how I think in general.
And my friends always mock me: Huguette needs a proof! Oh well, yes I do!
I worked with Gavin Ford until months before he was killed, that make them around 10 years, at some point I thought it’s unfair he’s charging 150$ per TVC while other are taking 300$ and 400$ so I took the initiative and told him: listen Gavin I have a budget so we can increase the fees a bit what do you think? And Gavin was like: this is great, this is so nice! (Hope my manager is not reading this🙄🙄) and then I just increased Gavin’s fees to 250/300$ and he was so happy! Well I was happier! I always loved him and admired his traits!
He was modest, gentle, professional, loving. He was so respectful, so easy to deal with and extremely kind! Never acted as a celebrity or acted as “not available” or “busy”, he always answered with no delay or called back immediately!
And despite increasing his fees, he was so flexible, whatever budget available, he would take the job gladly! The moment I ask, hey Gavin, tight budget for this one, he answers immediately: yes sure: without knowing how tight it is!
And as a British man, he used to pronounce my name right and I was always impressed how smart and caring he is! While some of my friends and family can’t pronounce my name and don’t bother to!
He was and still the nicest person I ever met! And I always say that!
I remember I called him once in the morning and he was on air in the middle of his morning show, and he said: “oh this is the postoffice calling” after his phone rang live and he forgot to put it on silent mode, so he had to make it natural! But he didn’t answer.
I totally forgot about his show! I needed to record that day urgently!
Seconds later my friends started to send me: you called Gavin? I was like what!! How you knew! It was funny and he called me during his break I guess that day.
By chance while checking his Facebook profile I read his favorite quote and it tells a lot about the person he was: “Never Think you are any better than anyone else…and never think you are any less.”
Elizabeth Wright (my Grandmother)
On November 27th 2018, I was working, it was a Tuesday, and since I walk from my house to my work, I rarely listen to his show unless I have something before work and I have to drive so I didn’t know that he didn’t show up for his morning show (and he never was late during his 23 years at Radio One).
A friend sent me and I thought it was a joke! “Gavin Ford was killed”!
What? Killed! Why! Who will kill Gavin Ford for God sake!!
I opened Facebook and this photo was on Radio One page and another VO talent was announcing the bad news. I lost my mind, I sent a message to another British talent I work with on daily basis and they were friends of course to know that this friend was from the first people that were there and discovered the body.
He was killed on Monday in his apartment he was strangled to death, and they stole his money and his car.
After celebrating his 53 birthday on November 25th.
He was murdered by 2 Syrians, he knows one of them and they plotted of course for this murder.
And then suddenly this man deserves to me humiliated after his death by sending the crime scene pictures in a rude and unprofessional way on Whatsapp and other mediums!
My friend received the pictures and refused to even send them to me! I was curious but she said no, you don’t want to see this! I was so pissed that the official party handling the investigation, thought that since he’s a gay then who cares! They allowed themselves to humiliate him because of his sexual orientation! Suddenly he doesn’t deserve respect because he’s gay! I was sure nobody except the official officers published this because I trust the persons that were there first and it wasn’t them who took pictures!
And of course people found a new topic to gossip about: oh yes the men he was with, the night before, killed him!
So you deserve to die because you are gay and you love the men instead of women! Oh wow! I wonder how much your lives have changed when you gossiped, when you shared pictures, when you said Yuck! When you gloated and hated and thought that you are better people because you are “straight” (if we’ll assume you are!).
For 23 years Lebanese have listened to “Gavin Ford in the morning”, a live morning show, starting 8:15 AM until 10.30 probably. They called and participated, they enjoyed Gavin jokes and news while driving and stuck in the traffic.
He has many co-hosts, the last co-host was Olga Habre and they were great together. When I asked how Olga is doing, the answer was: “she’s not doing any radio hosting anymore”.
And each morning on Radio One, there are various songs, no one is able to fill this big hole that Gavin left! Last picture shared on this page was November 24th 2018.
Olga was Gavin’s co-host for six and a half years—the longest lasting co-host he had in his 23 years at Radio One Lebanon.
He was a wonderful colleague and mentor as she said in a very great tribute she wrote! She’s a very strong woman and also a loss for the radio hosting field.
Olga said in the above article that Gavin had no intention of ever leaving Lebanon. Many have said over the years that he loved Lebanon more than the Lebanese, and that he deserved honorary Lebanese citizenship.
Gavin’s will was to be buried in Lebanon and his wish was granted of course.
A Tribute has been prepared by Dan Harper and Olga Habre and it was aired on all Lebanese radio stations on December 7th 2018.
This show raised money for Gavin’s favourite charity, The Children’s Cancer Center of Lebanon (CCCL).
Here in Lebanon, there are many gays and of course they manage to live (in secret of course or there are special places to hang out) and it always depends on how much money you have and how powerful you are, otherwise you’re arrested and humiliated. Anyway there’s an article in criminal law penalizing the gay sex.
In general, the Lebanese society is not open at all about this subject. Probably a small community of educated people, some NGOs, but if you try to open some random post on an NGO page defending the LGBT rights, and you check the comments for an example, you rather die than ever admitting that you’re gay or support LGBT rights!
People mock them the entire time, some think they deserve to die, some think that it’s disgusting and they are sick and need cure! That they’ll be burned in hell etc…
So basically, if you are a very kind person, loyal, honest, funny, generous, empathic and amazing, you can suddenly and in one second become disgusting and awful when you reveal your sexual orientation and I really don’t know if the name is accurate “sexual orientation” as if it’s about “sex” not love and feelings and an entire life you want to have with another person.
Even in the field I work in, the production and TV commercials / advertisement I can tell you that despite how ”cool” the people are, when a person steps in the company, you’ll hear mockery and whispers… Speaking of course how obvious it is (Some people have hormones problems and therefore it is obvious) they will mention their sexual orientation even if it’s not relative to business!
And even if they didn’t say anything humiliating, they will just mention it!
Imagine the situation in other society aspects, like you are in some family event or with your “Proud straight friends or family” and by mistake this subject is open: here you can take wonders! And you imagine yourself telling them that you’re gay and then you imagine their reactions! Oh wow! They will crucify you or stone you, or throw some acid on you probably, all the civilization and education will vanish just because you’re attracted to same gender and you don’t even know why or neither have a choice! They won’t care about the amount of pain and suffer you endure on daily basis.
“Straight” is the magic word!
I will also post a part of a comment I made on a fellow blogger yesterday and she thought with another blogger that this should be a separate post so I told them I’m already writing a post and will include the comment that was a reply for this post written by Jessica Larsen:
Regarding this subject, it’s like all other disrespect and phobias we face in this society! Probably the gays subject more than others…I don’t know why someone would be bothered about a person’s sexual or love orientation, why people care? They don’t need to love it but they can at least not bully and hurt! Who’s forcing them to read? I believe that all these people that show hate and aggressive attitude are probably fighting their true identity which is really sad…because if no one is hurting you or bothering you, why would you care? Why would you hate and be hostile?
Anyway, I want to say more but I’ll stop here and for me anyway even categorizing people shouldn’t exist! Straight, gay, bisexual…Why should I be labeled? I can simply say “Interested” “Not interested” when someone approaches me…This is how I see it, because sometimes we think we’re gay or bisexual then we discover there’s another name of our case….(Like the example you gave, you had a crush once or twice on a girl, so doesn’t mean you’re gay or even bisexual…) And some people get married and have kids and later on they have feelings to someone from same gender and discover their identities…I think people should focus on important things like famine, wars, social and economic issues, child abuse, women rights and violence, poverty….Child and women trafficking etc….how to make this world better instead of worrying of the people sex preferences!
Why do you care whom this person is sleeping with and whom they love? Why do you really care if you’re not fighting your own battles regarding this issue! Ask a psychologist and they will tell you better!
Why do you care while people are dying in 2019 from famine, wars, depression, and loneliness….But you care if someone loves men or women or want to sleep with the fucking tree!
You should focus on your miserable neighbor that you don’t bother to even say hello, on your depressed and lonely friend that you totally ignore, on the sound you heard yesterday of this woman that was beaten by her husband or father! And you pretended that it’s none your business but if the same woman was out dating someone, it will suddenly become your damn business right? What a hypocrite society!
Your concern should be that no human being should be abused under any circumstances!
Your concern should be that nobody should be touched against their will no matter what the circumstances are! But as long as it’s their choice, their will, their life, I’m sorry to tell you that it’s none of your business or concern!
Please people just focus on what matters to make this world a better place, we have enough judgmental people and hypocrisy and hate!
Remember that hate is a pure choice and the moment you hate people without any reason, just because they have other preferences, you need therapy, not them, you are sick, not them, you are going to hell, not them!!
You need to dig deep and ask yourself why you hate people that never hurt you; why you hate people that are perfect human beings but they are not “Straight”!
Does hate is “straight”?
Does judgment is “straight”?
Does bullying is “straight”?
Does hurt is “straight”?
Nope, it’s not! So you need to question your “straight” perception.
And you need to ask yourself, is this some achievement being “Straight”? Is this some personal effort and struggle?
Nope it’s not, but the great achievement is how you build your character and how you choose to treat other human beings especially those who are different from you!
The big achievement is to choose love!
Last but not least, I hope life can be as simple as Ellen DeGeneres makes it look! This woman is amazing and I really wish that life one day will be that simple and easy and being gay and married will be that acceptable! But her journey wasn’t easy at all and she managed to be that great, that successful, that humanitarian and happily married!
This speech is worth listening to and it’s also funny! She’s hilarious!
PS: Haters and homophobics are not welcome, and no I don’t respect your opinions at all so take your ass away from my blog!
Thank you for reading! Your opinions are always welcome, your hate and ignorance are certainly not.
Huguette Antoun – June 18th 2019