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PRIDE MONTH

NO VAIN FIGHT: The fierce and fabulous Drag Queen fighting for Free Speech

VANITY VON-GLOW, the ‘internationally ignored superstar, ballet instructor, aspiring icon, mother of several children and part-time alcoholic’ who’s protecting the universal freedoms of every single person on the planet spoke exclusively to Politicalite to mark Pride Month. 

Vanity hit the headlines earlier this year after she attended Tommy Robinson’s Day For Freedom event on Whitehall, in London that featured right-wing speakers such as UKIP leader Gerard Batten, For Britain leader Anne Marrie Watters, Gavin McCinns, Raheem Kassam, Shock-Jock Milo Yianoppolous, and Count Dankula to name a few.

Credit: Stuart Mitchell

Following the event, the left ate its own and attempted to defund the star with The Indy 100 gleefully reporting that she “lost bookings”

“Following a fierce backlash from the LGBT+ community, London queer bar Her Upstairs cancelled Vanity’s performance on Sunday night and released a statement that said “she will no longer be booked by Her Upstairs” as it stands.”

The rally was organised by Tommy to protest the government’s crackdown on free speech.

It began outside Downing Street and the district of British political might in Whitehall.

Tommy brought a van with LED screens and a £6,000 PA system, to drown out minor counter protesters.

Members of the Football Lads Alliance, the Veterans Against Terrorism groups, Generation Identity, The Proud Boys and ordinary men and women attended including blacks, gays and even one young girl in a Hijab.

Credit: Lucy Brown

I was also in attendance on the day with my South African friend to cover the event for Politicalite.

As an out and proud, but not loud queer lad, it was admirable to see a fellow member of the LGBT community address a crowd of mostly straight football lads, the people I tend to associate with back home in the North of England.

Vanity had me and the Footy lads dancing to a rendition of Shania Twain’s “That don’t impress me much” – which lead to me being forcibly snogged by a sweaty topless so-called ‘straight’, white male who was high on Class-A’s and feeling the love.

Hey, the perks of the job.

https://twitter.com/politicalite/status/1011090625696067585

The event was an enjoyable one and was peaceful, it even ended with a big gay burst of confetti.

There was only one arrest made and that was relating to drug possession (not the Narnia dwelling footy lad) but following the free-speech event, the rally was smeared as a ‘Far-Right’ event in the press and they tried to brand us all “Neo-Nazis” …odd, I must be the first mixed-race Homosexual Neo-Nazi in Britain.

Vanity was also attacked by the liberal media and members of her own LGBT community. Simply for for attending a right-wing rally.

I started by thanking Vanity for ‘standing up for free-speed’ in the LGBT community and asked her what message she would like to get across. (I had meant to type speech, but my iPhone had other intentions)

“Free Speed? Now THAT would be fabulous” said Vanity, with rapid-fire comedic reaction.

“Well my main thing is I don’t care who you are or what you think, your ideas should be decided, defended, debated and debunked in an open society.

Despite disagreements, we should not isolate one another for upholding freedom of speech. freedom of speech is what prevents us from settling our differences violently.”

Finally! I thought.

I feel, as a normal working class lad, that doesn’t let his sexuality define him, that the once radical LGBT movement has lost its way. It certainly doesn’t speak to me.

We have come so far since the dark days of the 1980s, but I personally feel like its stopped representing all members of the LGBT thanks to the Radical Left.

As a young queer lad, I once admired the LGBT movement, my childhood was filled with Lily Savage on Blankety Blank and I saw the first ever gay kiss on EastEnders. I watched Brian Dowling become a national treasure after he won Channel 4’s era-defining Big Brother and even snook downstairs to secretly watch Queer As Folk.

I was amazed at the first Gay Pride event I attended in Manchester and spent many nights (and mornings) partying on and around Canal Street, or Anal street as its known to many. Then as I grew older, I realised it wasn’t all about partying and inclusivity, it was about radical left-wing politics.

I asked Vanity about the hate she received on Twitter: “So you joined Twitter a month ago… have you had any hate? Is it homophobia? or is the hate from radical left who claim to represent us?”

“Twitter hasn’t been too bad.” said Vanity.

“In the immediate aftermath, it was Facebook where about half the performing community in London were posting long rants at my expense.”

“While there has been your usual homophobic-ish stuff it is far dwarfed by the ‘fascist’ claims and ‘enabler’ and ‘collaborator style accusations.”

I felt for Vantity and asked her how she felt after members of the gay community posted their vile rants: “Excluded? Like a Black Sheep? Did it make you want to apologise or stand firm?” I asked.

“Hmmm. Differently with different people. Some people made good points. Others were climbing on my back to morally grandstand which was amusing.

Others were genuinely hurt which I found sometimes upsetting sometimes baffling.

Some were spiteful which I found pitiable. What surprised me was how many people wouldn’t address me head on – cowardly I thought. But even those who did, it was kinda too much to contend with. Sheer volume I could not physically respond to everyone, so I prioritised replying to the DMs of support.

I felt my heart owed those people my time more than my head owed others and argument.”

I spoke of my own experiences online when i first started Politicalite, “It’s was so daunting,” I told Vanity, “I remember in the early days…I had so much hate and angry emails I cried one night and the bad comments stuck in my head.”

Now, I couldnt give a fuck, infact I revel in it.

“It gets easier and you just grow stronger and more resilient,” I told Vanity.

She said: “Luckily I feel I have the emotional toolkit to deal with this type of thing, so it hasn’t phased me too much.”

I asked Vanity about the state of the LGBT movement of 2018 and asked if she felt the pride movement supported free speech.

“I think Pride [has] their own political agenda so are not necessarily welcoming of “free speech” as a specific element. That said I know organisations like Pride In London work hard to consult communities within the LGBT+ community before going ahead with plans.

If you wanna be heard – show up to the meetings!

I think the majority of LGBT concerns are satisfied in the UK, certainly legally and I’d like to see us do more for people in other countries less fortunate – but like everyone I appreciate the limits of our scope for success in, say, Chechnya.

I look up to real heroes like Peter Tatchell who pays a real price for his campaigns. Not a smug bandwagon-jumping keyboard warrior who updates their profile picture to a rainbow during Pride month and thinks they’ve done their bit.”

I admire Vanity, for standing up for her beliefs and fighting the hard fight. She has the passion that the Stonewall revolutionaries had in the 80s and 90s. She’s fighting against the Establishment to be heard, like the LGBT movement of yesteryear. Now that, is something to be proud about.


To find out where you can see Vanity perform, check out her Twitter here.

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