Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Batsman Out

There are reports that a top cricketer has declared himself to be gay, a move that has attracted admiration for his courage in the macho world of top-class professional sport.

This reminded me that in more than two decades on the Bench I have only ever sat with one openly gay colleague. Common sense tells me that I have probably sat with very many, but the chap concerned was the only one who has ever spoken about his (male) partner with whom he had just spent a holiday. There was nothing in-your-face about the pre-court chat, and the existence of the partner came into the conversation naturally. Most JPs are small-c conservative I suppose, but it is still surprising that more do not feel comfortable about allowing their sexuality to become known.

Perhaps it is a justifiable fear of the sniggering nudge-nudge of the tabloid press: I can just see the Sun running a headline like "BANGED UP BY THE GAY-P". Yuk.

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