Episode 1: Queerly Me



Hello and welcome to it's just my queer opinion with me your host, Niall Hemingway. Here we are episode one. Thank you so much for downloading or streaming and having me in your ears, or speakers or wherever. What a treat for you to hear these lovely vocal tones in your, in your clues within a check. I'm very excited that you have chosen to download and listen to the very first episode and hopefully every episode follow. But I'm also very nervous. because let me tell ya, let me tell you something that dear listener, I podcasted before and it was with my really good Judy Callum. And we had a great time. And it was lovely. But there was someone to back and forth with and now I'm flying solo, I am doing this on my own. At home in the office. I've got my mic, I've got my laptop, I've got my phone, and I'm here. I'm going to talk. Now I'm hoping it all makes sense. And I'm hoping I remember what I say sometimes I've kind of blacked out because I get so nervous. But here we go. Are you excited? I am I'm excited. I also feel like there's going to be times where I leave pause for someone to respond. So in that time, please feel free to shout out your responses. While I remember that no one is here. And I can't hear anyone. Well, let me tell you a little bit why I created this podcast. Firstly, there are so many great queer podcasts out there. But the reason I created this one is I've been thinking about it for a while and I wanted to create that was a really big breath. I'm so sorry. I wanted to create a space where I can share my opinion and hopefully effect change in one person, but really, I think probably even in myself. And everything I'm going to talk about will come are researched. So wait, just be throwing out fake news as that ginger Watson used to say, I will be sharing how I've got to my opinion, as well as the other side. Because some of the things I'm going to talk about, there are pros and cons. So I'm not going to be so ignorant to be like this is the only way to do anything, even though there are some situations where I will do that. Because there is just some situations that queer people have to deal with where I'm like, I you can't explain the other side in a reasonable, rational manner. Unless you find that argument, in which case, if you can, in those moments, bring that to me. I'm here to learn and be educated as I hope maybe you are. And I'm probably going to say things that you disagree with. Great. Talk to me about it. But I also might say things that you didn't even think about ever. I think often as a white man about how pride I mean, prior to black lives matter how much I self reflected on how much I didn't know about the black experience, and not because of what actually just because it's not taught and also didn't affect me. So I didn't listen. And over this time, I've taken the time to educate myself, which also gave me room to create this space for queer issues. Because there's this argument I hear a lot that it's on TVs, and it's an articles and it's on chat shows where they're like, Oh my god, it's 2021. Like we just I can't believe it's happening in 2021. The year does not mean that change happened. Just because we get a year further on in human evolution does not mean the mind evolves with it. And it's an argument that really boils my blood. So I was like, how do I handle this? Other than projecting onto my friends that has beds and I'm really mad about it. I thought, well, let's create this space to talk about that. Yes, no, we come a long way as a society. But bench there is so much further to go. And there are issues that are straight counterparts really don't have to think about and you should and there are things as a queer community, because listen, we ain't perfect. There's a lot of issues within us. In our community, we need to challenge and I'm a frickin do it. And so even if there's only one person listening, and this helps you change your opinion, or if there's 1000 100,000 to be lovely. This is the space I want to create. And I want to talk about lots of issues. It's not going to be limited to my white queer perspective. I will be talking about race. I will be talking about size ism, ageism and gender ism. I don't know if it is gender ism, but I'm going to claim gender ism, all the isms of difference and how I view them how I think we could change. And why I think we're at that point and allowing ourselves to sit in this point. So that's what this podcast is about. If that does just came through the microphone, I just got a text message reminder popping up. I know I forgot what you said, because they looked at my phone, but we will tackle it all. And as I say, I'll be talking about politics, current law, history, I'm gonna listen, I am going to on straight wash some historical ship for you because I love history. And I'm bored or reading these stories about these great white straight men, and occasionally white straight women. But listen, I'm going to let the women have that moment because you bitch, men oppressed, straight white men oppress everybody. So I'm not angry as straight white men, and straight men. But y'all ain't my favourite sometimes. Please don't take it as a bashing. But we're gonna unstraight wash it, we're going to tell you some facts about not all in this episode over over this whole podcast because it's just shit we should know. In the same way the shit we should know about black history and, and our white oppressive history. And I'm gonna bring it up. I'm going to talk about it. And I hope you want to hear about it. And listen, I will always try to get things right. But if I get it wrong, let me know. I'm not afraid of being corrected. I want to learn as much as I want to educate. So on that note, why don't you grab a cup of tea, unless it's in the afternoon and you want to get a gin or wine or anything you want to drink? Come back, but don't go anywhere. What am I saying? Just get a cup of tea. And we're going to carry on after this short musical interlude. Hello, welcome. I hope you got a lovely cup of tea. I got myself a coffee with oat milk, because I'm trying to cut my dairy intake down for no particular reason that the one is just don't want to drink that much dairy anymore. And so I thought, let's get to know me. I thought to start the first podcast off, let's get to know who's talking to you. So you want to My name is Niall. I am a 30 year old queer man who lives in London. I identify as polysexual. Which for those who may not know means that I am attracted to some but not all genders more than to the traditional two genders. So yes, I don't know why that's important. shevat I feel like is poly sexuality isn't talked about very much. And not many people know about it. And I'm married to a wonderful man called Stuart, who I will probably mention various times on this show, because he's a massive influence. It's a massive influence in my life. I've got a beautiful dog who's currently just sniffing around underneath the desk. So if any sudden noises or sounds, that's who that is. His name is buckbeak because we are Harry Potter fans, which I will stay now Harry Potter fan, not JK Rowling fan. I am of the belief that you can separate the body of Harry Potter from her because it's taken on a world so far on its own that that she can just be left outside, she know what I mean. Like, I always find it fascinating that she is so anti trans vocally really trans women, but she's also probably anti trans man as well. And, and what I find fascinating why I find that fascinating is because as a queer individual reading the HP books, I have a lot of queer subtext in there and listen, we will find what we want to find in things but girl that was that was there's a lot of parallels and a lot of being yourself. So for her to turn around, you know, several years later to be like, but that's not real women is wild, not wild because people are selfish and rude and uneducated. And it goes to show you that just because she's written some books, and she has a literary education does not mean that she is intelligent on the ways of gender identity and politics. So in short, fuck you, JK Rowling. And Harry Potter just exists. It was not written by anybody. It just happens to be. That's my opinion, and on that I am a proud Ravenclaw if that matters, it's something that's really important. I think like there are certain millennials that are very much like oh my god, like what Hogwarts house you Am because really important for me to know. Listen like a special talent. Whenever I've decided like met people, and I can kind of tell them what their houses are. They've done the Pottermore and I've been turned on. Is that a skill? No. Is it sad? Probably. Am I proud of it?


Yeah.


My favourite band is Little Mix. Now listen, that's celebrating 10 years 10 years of level Max, which is incredible. When you think about it, they came from the X Factor. And now if I remember rightly, they were all put together, or Yeah, they were all auditioned independently and put together 10 years later, they're still going they are one of the most successful girl groups, if not bands of the UK. And good for them. And I have been a fan for a long time. I'm just gonna take a sip of my coffee. I was holding it to my lips, the whole, like the last 30 seconds of talking to me the right time to do it. And so they I have not always been about so I was very judgmental. And then I saw them in a concert that I went to with a friend of mine. I don't know why they had tickets. Anyway, I went with them and changed my life. Listen, they can sing. They can dance, they that camp, they are high camp, and they stand for something important. And I listen, they've always been on side with the gays and the LGBTQ so I'm here for that. I'm here for anyone that wraps us like that. And actually why we're talking about music. What was that rappers name? The sad sad man sad baby does it sad baby doll baby. I'm gonna Google it. But the guy he was like, he's been doing raps and they're really homophobic and about AIDS and, and shit like that. And it's just so unnecessary. Our dababy formerly known as baby Jesus, Oh Christ, here we go. Did we know that? Did you know that? This should probably tell you what he did. So the baby literally was singing songs or rapping. He was rapping sorry. And he was saying all these horrendous things. Which hip hop has literally several hip hop artists have said there's a huge issue with homophobia in in the hip hop culture. And he just he was inciting anti LGBTQ controversy with music video aids and all this shit that like are we not over it yet? No, we're not because the education is lacking. But we'll see what's called previously if you look on his little Wikipedia and it says previously known as baby Jesus. Mother that just sit there for me previously known as baby Jesus. This rapper anyway, not a fan. To be fair I've never been if I didn't know existed, who is he? But he's got an opinion on people like me. So now I'm I have an opinion on him. But what my favourite thing about this is, is the incredible artist of Lal NASS, which I'm sure everybody knows, has just become like, he beat him on like sales and, and Spotify, like highest ranking artist. Which I'm like, Yes. Come on that that's how you get your own back success. Success Trumps these people but then also at the same time you get successful gives you zero shits about them. And then they're they're like, we're the gauge took my job. And they get really angry. I'm really mean. So that's who the baby is. I've totally got off tangent. It's got nothing to do with getting to know me. But there you go. That is one of my queer opinions. I suppose on music, like, I listen to a bit of everything. I'm open to everything, but I do have been very gay. In terms of my music choices. Lesson give me a diva. Give me Celine. Give me Whitney. Give me a big voice and I'm there for it. Give me this go to I love disco. Pop music. I'm here for really getting into BTS at the moment. Which I know that again, lots of people probably already there. I listen to a lot of musicals. That's what I do. I'm an actor and I've worked in musicals. Speaking I saw a musical. I'm not going to name it, because I don't want to get in trouble. But Steve and I went to this musical and let me tell you, it was everything I hate about musical theatre. It was weak story. In fact, it was sense of story.


The music was fine, but it wasn't incredible. The set was lovely. The costumes were stunning. And the talent was like, but the story was all about like being ugly. And all these pretty people who are all muscley and that, you know, that lovely stereotype everyone thinks is everyone's definition of beauty. sing about how ugly these people are. and The Ugly character just FYI. is an ugly she's a slightly curvy woman, but she's not. She's not ugly, and she's not fat and she's not any of these things that they're singing against. She's like, everyone show mean. And then they've got this Prince in it that might have given away what I'm talking about. who apparently is also an attractive and it's this gorgeous. Guy is gorgeous.


Like, I can just really missed the mark. And so that means Geez, that those two larger men being like, what are we what? We're literally watching these pricy people be like, we hate fat people, we hate ugly people, we only value prettiness. And we left at the interval because it was just horrendous. If you are intrigued to know the full title of the show, slide into the DMs and I will confess all. But anyway, that I'm sidetracked again, this was just like a get to know when you aren't getting to know that number one.


I get sidetracked, because I didn't write a full idea of what I was going to talk about today. Because it's the first one I thought, let's experiment, see what happens. So we've that's what this is, I promise you episodes Following this, they will have more of a structure. And I'll know I'll know more of what I'm going to talk about. So anything else you'd like to know about me? Probably. But anyway, that's enough about me, I want to talk now i can i can use section. But again, I didn't want to dive in too strong. On the first episode, I wanted us to get a feel for each other. So I thought that I would, excuse me, I thought I would just let you know what it's like with LGBT rights in the United Kingdom. As if 10:40am on the 24th of August 2021.


Now we have a lot of things are quite decently there's no censorship. Now, you are allowed to legally change gender, whether you have surgery or not. However, non binary gender is not legally recognised. So that's like the fuck. But then I think the non binary has been here forever, but has only recently come into conversation more over the last five or so years, as there has been space created for us to talk about it. I myself, I use pronouns of he, they them, although I'm more prone to using them. And I don't identify as a male all the time, mostly, but not all the time, I've learned this about myself over the last year that I it's a journey I'm learning but if you do identify as male, or female or non binary, or trans or whatever, it doesn't matter. And it shouldn't matter to anyone else, like this whole thing about pronouns. It doesn't matter the only person pronouns affect is the person who wants them used on them. This this stupid argument like number one, the first argument about gender pronouns in particular is, if you use they them that is it's not grammatically correct. To which I would like to say to people for cough, it is grammatically correct to say they them or there's in referring to a person you do all the time, like that's their wallet. When you're talking about man, it's like, oh, that's Barry, that's their wallet. And that's their coat is the same thing as if Jackie mentioned a neutral name, Alex was like, if Alex was there, they wanted to do this. It's just, it's just reworking your brain because your as a society, we're so prone to thinking of things in a binary. And we're told like it's always been that way because of some religious text, the Bible and whatever that claim there was Adam and Eve, God made man and woman, bitch, that's fine. If you want to believe that really lovely story, then you go for it. But yeah, scientifically, it's not true. There are two sexes, but even then that's actually not scientifically accurate. I believe there are more than two. But I will talk about that in a different episode when I've got all my facts with me, and but gender as as, as a construct it as a binary construct is society and society driven, not in science in itself. Like, fuck that. It doesn't matter. It doesn't change your life and it doesn't affect anyone. But Forgive me sweeping statement. But the boomer generation have an issue. Like I had conversations with my family when they're like, I don't get it. I don't get it. And I'm there like, half my age to be like, What don't you get? That that's this bit. I this is one of them moments where I can't really give the other side because I'm like, y'all give argument doesn't make sense. I'm yet to meet someone who makes a decent argument of why they struggle with pronouns. Because if your argument is based on Well, in my day, fuck that in your day, racism was rife, still is, but like, that doesn't mean that we should just be okay that you grew up at education never stops, we never stop learning. Just use the right fucking pronouns. It's not difficult. And if you get it wrong, it's okay. Like, you'll be corrected. Like, just don't be a dick, if you're corrected, you know, and I had a conversation with my good pal, Ali litchi. couple days ago, in Virginia, we met a very nice man called Ellen, who lesson represent our end because you are the most gorgeous straight man we have ever had the pleasure to meet at random and have conversations with which both I and I, as queer individuals, we have never felt safe to talk with straight people as openly as we talk with you, but you are a diamond. So anyway, we were talking about Fuck, I've totally forgotten what we were talking about. It was really good.


Oh, it's kind of lame. You see, I was that good. He distracted me. From visual map so much gender, blah, blah, blah. Doesn't matter. Whatever. irrelevant. So moving on. Gender is a binary construct exists on so many levels. Just as queerness exists on so many levels. I think people struggle with all the different names. For example, you know, I said I was polysexual. There was like, bicon in jasprit. gay or lesbian? Because Fucking hell, the world isn't that clean car. It never has been. But we only get to come out and drabs because of the street people struggle. Now, listen, let me clear this up as well. So I'm going to say a lot straight people, as a collective. And again, what tends to happen is there are people who will like, but I'm not like that. Good for you. I'm proud that you are not like that. But the majority of your kind are it's like when when things are said like all white people. I I'm not instantly offended as a white person that all white people are criticised because batch we are responsible for the state of racism in this country, whether it's subconsciously or not, we play our parts, we have to learn in the same way straight people, y'all to allow a homophobic shit every day. And get over it, and you do not transphobic and misogynistic. And that's men and women, but they both do misogynistic things. So I'm using it as a sweeping statement, because I can't be asked to say some and also we're not in a society where saying some has the right effect. So I don't want to immediately turn people off, but that's what I will shorten it to is RSP which means Oh, straight people. And when I say RSP y'all know that I'm talking about the collective. Okay, good. Listen, I said I was going to talk about that much. And then we are I've touched on gender, race, and gender queerness. This is just like, it's like a good sample of everything that's gonna come either that way completely turned off and you stopped listening, in which case that's also that's actually quite rude, actually. But Amanda, whenever Do you, you're not forced to be here. At this coffee is really nice. Let me just check my notes because even though this is completely unscripted, I have got some notes, just to kind of keep me loosely on track, which I think he's going all right so far. So we do I was talking about rights in the UK discrimination is illegal.


But issues that I mean, I'm talking about the UK specifically, we don't even need to talk about America or any other country at this point because we will get to those countries in time where my niblings, Queer niblings are killed. I'm thinking about Afghanistan at the moment and how hard it was already, before the Taliban took over, for queer people to what it's like now, I was reading this really heart-breaking article in the BBC, of this young man talking about what he's going through right now. And it's heart-breaking. And he's, he's literally afraid for his life. And he says, as a gay person in Afghanistan, you cannot reveal yourself to your family or your friends. If I reveal Myself, he says, to my family, maybe they will beat me, and maybe they will kill me. Fuck Jesus is pay out as fucking pay is heart-breaking. And I know love is all a heartbroken by what we were seeing happening in Afghanistan. And then you look at our fucking government, and that's gap hug of a woman. Priti Patel, he's like, well, we can't, you know, we can't give them too much for the refugees because it would send the wrong signal to other refugees FARC off? Why? Who the fuck do we think we are that we can cause this war because we are responsible, the West are responsible for this war, which I will talk about in another podcast, and then turn our backs on these children, these men and women who have who are innocent and just go, sorry. It's the it's the great Lie of the human race. I think we're like, we're all one. And we all want to be united. And we all care. And it's the great myth of all the religions that preach unity, love and acceptance, as long as you fit into the brackets of we have put in place and it drives me absolutely nuts. But as I said, we'll go into that in more detail. And in another podcast, employment discrimination cannot happen based on sexual orientation or gender identity. However, I know that, Oh, this is what Ali and I were talking about the other day. And we were talking about like we, I think there's a fair few queer people will understand this. We've played it straight to get jobs. Because I know I have not got jobs because I'm gay, or queer or whatever. So we've talked about that, but you can't do that anymore. But housing discrimination is illegal to refuse on sexual orientation and gender identity. adoption is legal. Military legally, donating blood. That's changed a lot. Recently, I think like we can give blood now but I don't know how I feel about it. If I'm honest, I don't know how I feel about it because I want to give blood because it helps others. But why has it taken this long for a straight government to decide that my blood is good enough? My organs were fine. Apparently when you die. You just stop ever having been gay and then you can use your organs, but blood with GBS. I work with blood. And I admire anyone who does give blood because people need it. So this is a weird one. It's a weird like, South Shore battle in my brain. Like it's it's almost pride I guess, which is stupid. But oh, well, sometimes I'm a little dumb. age of consent is equal. And conversion therapy is not banned. It is not illegal in this country to offer conversion therapy.


That boils my base.


This is a whole other Podcast. I am closely connected to conversion therapy through my husband who underwent conversion therapy.


And learning the nuances of it is I have to put the thought into that one to write down my words because otherwise I'm just going to go shit at people and that's not conducive to creating change. But let me just tell you in no uncertain terms, it's fucking ridiculous. That conversion therapy is not illegal. Worldwide, but in this country. In our advanced UK government. We it comes up every year it comes up before Parliament every year conservative Parliament just like Let's get that clear. And every year it's not passed. I let this sink with you. Because it's the government that brought section 28 who denied our rights for the longest time, the Labour Party to to like when they were in power, they could have done something they didn't. You can't change someone's sexual orientation. All you can do in this type of therapy is destroy someone's soul, and life. And some people who survived conversion therapy are forever affected by it. But the sad truth is, there's such a large majority of young adults, young queer adults that do not survive conversion therapy. And they take their own lives. So again, we live in this Western world where we're supposed to be so equal and so advanced, and we let queer youth die because some book because it's religion based, has told this great lie. And, and but you can make peace that you're killing children and young adults, and grown adults. As I said, I'm holding this for another podcast. So you've got so many exciting things to look forward to.


And I listened to this back before I release it, I'm gonna be like, Oh, I said that. So there you go. That's like just a little history of what's some of our rights. And that doesn't really cover trans rights, because there's, there's really big issues with the trans community and how they are looked after, in in our government and society, and it's horrendous. But even in our community, we don't look after our trans nibbling as well as we should. Given that it was a black trans woman who threw the first break at Stonewall, that launched the Gay Liberation Front, pride as it would come to be. We don't look after them. And we shouldn't that's disgraceful. It's disgraceful on us as queer people, but it's disgraceful, straight people and the world in general. And we have to be about to we have to, and that's what I'm going to try and do here, I'm going to try and bring us together, this little podcast, from my little flat is that's its aim is to put more love in the world a more understanding, and ultimately, always come from my point of view, this is my queer opinion that you might share you might disagree with. And like I said, That's all right, let's talk about it. And let's try and find some common ground. Who I don't know about you, but like, I'm just gonna take a sip of this coffee. So get a refund of your wine, get a refund of whatever. And, and I'll be right back. I am going to close out now with all of my favourite stories of the summer. So we have the Olympics this year, which was amazing. I didn't watch it because I don't like sports. But I love this really cool fact that if every LGBT q plus athlete had registered as their own country, they would have come 11th overall in the world for medals. That's fucking amazing. Like, go go, the athletes and the winning, and that's awesome. I just thought it was really cool fact. So I guess what I'm trying to say is we should start a country that's just LGBTQ Plus, if you're in for it, give me a whoop, whoop. Now, I'm going to sign out here. This has been so nerve wracking and exciting to create this first episode. I hope you've enjoyed it. Next week, I will be coming at you with a heavier topic. Maybe we'll talk about Afghanistan next week, or conversion therapy or something, I don't know. But if you have anything you want to share your opinion on. If you then get in touch, if you want to tell me that you hate me, because you disagree with everything I've said, fuck off. But nobody's in all seriousness, get in touch with me. Tell me what you thought. Tell me what you like, tell me what you'd like to hear me talk about and I am all for it. I can't wait. I've really enjoyed making this for you today. And I look forward to being together. Next Monday. Now, I've said about getting in touch. That'd be helpful. I've actually told you how you can follow us on Instagram at just my quick opinion. Which you know, then you can sign into my DMS, which I would love. Also you can follow me on Twitter or follow us on Twitter with at my query opinion, slightly different that's at my query opinion. Or if you've really fancy you can shoot me an email because I have an email account. Where you can eat? I've literally forgotten it. No, I haven't. It's here, my career opinion@yahoo.com and you can shoot me any thoughts, feelings, what we've talked about or what you'd like to hear. And of course, if you're really, really busy, and you're just nosy head on over to just my queer opinion.com and you'll be there at my website with this lovely picture of me, taken by the incredible Jimmy Scott. This has been amazing. For me. Yeah. Anyway, I've enjoyed myself. I hope you've enjoyed it. I look forward to dropping another episode next Monday.


And until then, just remember this simple thing. It's just my queer opinion. With me Niall Hemingway. Thank you. Lots of love and lots of happiness.