Bil Browning

Slow News Day: Towleroad Pulls a Fox Trick

Filed By Bil Browning | April 25, 2011 11:00 AM | comments

Filed in: Media
Tags: Bahrain, Peter Tatchell, pink washing, Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa, Towleroad

I was all set to report that LGBT activists had forced Bahrain's Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al-Khalifa to abandon his plans to attend the upcoming royal wedding after reading Towleroad's headline, Smells Like Fox News"Royal Wedding Invite Declined By Crown Prince of Bahrain After Objection from Gay Rights Activists and Other Groups." After all, how exciting that the LGBT community forced the hand of a notoriously anti-gay middle eastern regime, right?

Not so fast. After reading both of the articles sourced in Towleroad's post, it looks like now unemployed Queerty writers have now been hired to conjure up headlines for Towleroad. Gay rights had nothing to do with it whatsoever. The Crown Prince is actually persona-non-grata because of his government's violent crackdown on democracy protestors - including the recent decision to seek the death penalty for seven anti-government activists.

In fact, the only thing "gay" about either article is buried at the bottom of the second article Towleroad links. Peter Tatchell, a famous British gay activist, called the Prince's inclusion on the invite list a "massive misjudgement." Tatchell doesn't even warrant a quote that runs a full sentence.

Did the Crown Prince beg off because of pressure from "gay rights activists?" Hardly. Both articles make it perfectly clear that it's all about the crackdown. There's something queer going on here, but it has nothing to do with the Crown Prince. We do our community no favors by misrepresenting serious human rights violations; we build coalitions by working together instead of trying to make it all about us. (img src)

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I've never found Andy Towle's blog to be completely honest, and definitely not free of misleading headlines, long before Queerty closed. (My opinion only).