A decision by the new London administration not to continue with a Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Advisory Panel formed by former Mayor Ken Livingstone has been attacked by a leading gay Muslim activist. Pav Akhtar branded the decision “extremely concerning”. On the eve of Pride London on Saturday, where Mayor of London Boris Johnson led the parade, Mr Akhtar issued a statement. “Boris Johnson’s attempts to woo the LGBT community rings hollow given his disbanding of the Mayor’s Lesbian and Gay Advisory group,” he said.
But Johnson has at least one admirer in the LGBT community, who is evidently happy to ignore the abolition of the Lesbian, Gay and Bisexual Advisory Panel, not to mention Johnson’s earlier bigoted remarks about homosexuality. On the Pink Triangle blog George Broadhead of the Gay and Lesbian Humanist Organisation is quoted as saying, in connection with the Mayor’s Pride London reception at City Hall: “I thought Boris did very well, and was a refreshing change from Ken Livingstone who badly blotted his copy book by warmly welcoming that frightful homophobic Islamic cleric Yusuf al-Qaradawi.”
Broadhead was one of the contributors to the notorious “Sick Face of Islam” issue of the now thankfully defunct Gay and Lesbian Humanist magazine, where he wrote: “There are two terms that, increasingly, annoy us: Islamophobia and moderate Muslims. What we’d like to know is, first, what’s wrong with being fearful of Islam (there’s a lot to fear); and, second, what does a moderate Muslim do, other than excuse the real nutters by adhering to this barmy doctrine?”
Update: Pink News reports that “Outrage! backs Boris over abolition of gay advisory panel“. Peter Tatchell’s sidekick Brett Lock is quoted as saying: “Instead of negatively sniping at the Mayor, LGBT groups should concentrate on presenting Boris with practical and constructive policy ideas for the benefit of LGBT Londoners.”