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Sunday, October 18, 2009

Stephen Gately RIP, but let's not pretend he was Gandhi

Stephen Gately was a moderately talented singer and disco dancer.

He was not Gandhi, or Martin Luther King, or Jesus Christ.

The cult of celebrity that led to firstly the virtually state funeral he had yester with thousands outside the church and secondly the wall-to-wall coverage of his death is to me sadly symptomatic of a society in thrall to fame.

Let's not forget, another man was buried yesterday - a man who was a talented athlete, who volunteered at his local scout troop, who was immensely talented at his job, training our air corps pilots and who tragically died last Monday.

Yet on RTE's 1pm news, we got 15 minutes of the Gately funeral and 15 seconds of Derek Furniss's funeral. Something's wrong with our priorities.

Gately died of a pulmonary oedema resulting from heart failure that appears to be genetically related. The lad was fit and healthy and drank little and smoked little. Some of the papers are carrying the toxicology reports, and they reveal only cannabis and some prescription medications in his system, none of which could possibly have caused his death.

He was involved in a relationship with his partner which is the homosexual equivalent of marriage - a civil union. However, despite this, he and his partner went to a gay nightclub on holiday and picked up a Bulgarian student, brought him home and took turns having sex with him.

The Daily Mail's Jan Moir was hauled over the coals for homophobia when she suggested that there was something 'unnatural' about Gately's death. There was nothing unnatural about his death except the tragically young age at which he died.

But on one point she was correct - the sort of sexual scenario Gately was engaged in at the time of his death - effectively sharing a nightclub pick up with his partner - does not advance the cause of gay marriage one iota.

Finally, Gerald Kean is representing the Gately family here. No one else. Hence there have been arguments with Louis Walsh among others over how information emerged and other matters.

Keane is speaking for the family when he contradicts the version of events presented by the Bulgarian. It is in their interests to see the public reputation of their deceased relative preserved to the utmost.

On the other hand, the Bulgarian may stand to make money by selling a sordid tale to the tabloids.

The truth may be discerned however by the fact that Gately's partner has not offered a version of events which contradicts the Bulgarian's version, and that the Spanish police are also happy that the Bulgarian's testimony is correct.

To conclude: it's sad he died so young, but he didn't die of sex, drugs or suicide, and he wasn't Gandhi, so let's all move on and not make this into our Princess Diana national cringefest, please.


Twenty Major said...

Well said.

Some of the stuff is just awful. Ronan Keating saying "We know you're at peace now. Perfect peace".

The bloke wasn't terminally ill or suffering in any way. He died an unfortunately premature death. I know they've lost a mate and that's very hard to get over but there seems to be a complete inability to not descend immediately into schmaltz.

alb said...

Well said indeed.

Ronan Gallagher said...

He may be dead, but his royalties live on. Death seems to be the perfect career move for many of these pop stars.

click here said...

"The truth may be discerned [..]"

So, in other words, you actually don't know what the truth is, and you've just included a load of homophobic nonsense to make your post interesting.

Apart from being wholly insensitive to those who survive Gately, that's just lazy.

JC Skinner said...

Hold on, moron.
The police have confirmed what happened, and their account tallies with what the Bulgarian said.
Gately's partner has made no comment on the matter.
So the truth IS known already.
Go and take your ill-founded shrill accusations of homophobia somewhere else, preferably somewhere where people can teach you how to read English properly.

click here said...


You post states, "took turns having sex with him"

Police statement refers to "intimacy".

That's quite the vivid imagination you've got there. For a moron.

JC Skinner said...

You're genuinely remedial.
The Bulgarian has told police and admitted in public he had sex with both Gately and his lover.
This has not been denied by Gately's lover, who in any case confirmed to police that he was in bed with the Bulgarian until the visitor got up and discovered Gately was dead.
You'd be moaning your hole off if the cops had baldly stated they were having an anal sex threesome, so you don't get to pretend that when they refer to 'intimacy' they didn't mean three-way sex.
Because they clearly did.

Rebecca D said...

You's are just awful. Firstly the comment about him virtually having a state funeral, well it just goes to showt the commitment of the Boyzone fans is far and wide and goes deep. If I could have made it I to would have gone. It was fans way of saying goodbye to someone who we loved alot. Stephen had been apart of our lives for many years. We were robbed. And the comments about Stephen and Andrew having sex with that guy, well some people have a sick mind. No one was there so how does anyone know there was a threesome going on. I can't tell who is correct right now, I am 100% certain in my heart that, that never happened. Stephen was not like that. So lets just put it down to a tragedy. Two people lost their son, four people lost their brother, one person lost their husband and four guys lost a great friend and last be not least millions lost someone very special.

JC Skinner said...

Actually, the threesome has long since been confirmed by both the two survivors.
Personally, I couldn't care less one way or the other.
My point was that he was merely a dancer and covers band singer who did not warrant the media coverage his death received in comparison to the simultaneous funeral of a national hero being all but ignored.