Here he is, look - Alexander Boot, a sad dreary old man with a powdery comb-over and a clumsy watch, one of the few photos of him on the internet because he isn't very reputable or venerated, appearing to look out, but actually he is looking very deeply in, because this is a lonely and disillusioned writer, riled by his own middling success, riddled with regret, grateful for any Daily Mail invoice that he can get, even if it means dancing fat and naked to their media agenda's drum, drowning in his own ink well and attacking several million people who he doesn't know but who he might envy perhaps due to a repressed homosexual streak that trickles down his conscience like a bead of ball sweat against a doughy unloved thigh.
Yesterday Alexander wrote a lovely piece in the Daily Mail stating that Homosexuality is a departure from the norm. And what is the norm Alexander? Heterosexuality? Divorce? Single Parenthood? Loneliness? Bigamy? Slavery? Coffee? He is deliberately confusing two words: Normal, and Common. It is perhaps more common, more frequent, more expected, that somebody will be heterosexual. But it isn't normal. It is normal that 1 in 15,000 people who take a Paracetemol might faint. It is normal that a Swedish pop star will top the British charts once every 200 weeks. Is is normal, as a combined average from several colossal studies, that 6-10 people out of every 100 will identify as gay, but in fact that many, many more will have a homosexual episode at some stage in their lives. It is normal for healthy heterosexual people to not bother themselves about the multitudinous normal existence of gay people.
Although Alexander Boot incorrectly says that "1% of us are inclined to be homosexual". I can't even be bothered to argue this one, like where did he get that from? Does he mean 1% of the boys in his history seminars at Warwick University that he makes stay behind for "feedback"? The Daily Mail have simply gone ahead and published an obvious lie. It's no different to them publishing "10% of pumpkins can chatter quietly amongst themselves before being plucked". It's JUST BOLLOCKS.
So why does the Daily Mail publish this bollocks? I write for magazines and know that sometimes a pitch works and sometimes it doesn't. Sometimes an editor will say "Yes! Do it!" and sometimes they will say "No, this one really doesn't fit with the issue this time, sorry."
So what is the Daily Mail's agenda? Let's forget about the sad whored-out "columnists" and focus on the editors. Which individuals at Northcliffe House are personally responsible for upsetting and trying to ruin the Saturday mornings of thousands? And how can the gay community put an end to the belligerent work of these life-wrecking media beasts who commission nasty, incorrect articles packed with lies with the touch of their Blackberry and then sit back in their garden and watch their kids playing, probably not stopping to think that one of their children might actually be gay when they grow up, and that they've just personally played a key part in securing an uphill climb in a nasty seething world of middle-class pith for their darling, darling child.
The answer is: Money.
The Daily Mail want gay people to get angry, read their stories, click, RT, huddle around Facebook statuses, frowning at emails, etc. etc.. It's page impressions, adverts, money. We know all of this, we keep saying it, "Ooh look at the Mail link-baiting", liberal writers and journalists like Hadley Freeman repeatedly flag up the Daily Mail, documenting how anti-feminist and fucked in the head the journalists at the Mail are, comparing the paper to an "abusive husband", but we still keep coming back, we keep arguing, spinning the money wheel, falling into the trap. But what's worse - we have to, because this is our lives that they are repeatedly messing with. This is our community that they are trying to make a horrible place for us.
Like a local funeral parlour that puts poison in the village well, but on a mass scale, it is almost too upsetting to dwell on the fact that the Daily Mail's editors continually publish venom that they know will worsen the lives of our country's most vunerable, whilst earning traumatised page hits out of its most sensible.
Because whilst I can sit here in Hampstead with my granola and yoghurt, typing away on my blog until hangover clearance o'clock, others can't. What about those gay individuals who are still dependent on their oppressors, who aren't blessed with the most tolerant of families? Imagine it. The homophobic step-dad reading aloud phrases from the Daily Mail at breakfast - "You should read this" - before cutting out a photo of a cute squirrel to send to his daughter from a previous marriage. The angst teenagers who slowly twist and cripple their own hearts whilst reading their parents' newspapers that they take as verbatim.
We use the word bigotry a lot here in media-savvy London, but I think more fitting words are misery, pain, upset, nastiness, sorrow - These are the feelings that the Daily Mail wants openly gay people to experience. What was once a newspaper, notice the word "news", is now nothing but a sharpened knife hiding behind J-Lo's arse.
And what can we do? How can we help? Perhaps Hadley could write a Guardian column advising us on how to respond as a community?
Do we leave futile comments on their website, wedged between the higgledy hip-replacement gibberish, saliva-splattered side comments and the beyond-help coos of horse-breeders's wives? Do we track down the editors, turn up at their pastel-coloured villas and ask them why they keep doing this to us? Do we ask gay people who work at the Daily Mail to get a reality check? Do we write to the Mail's advertisers?
It's so depressing, and as much as you want to see those latest photos of Kate Middleton playing hockey, the only answer is... to ignore the Daily Mail.
It won't make it go away, but it will make your life better.
Take comfort in the fact that there are millions of gay people living in the world, everywhere. Apple CEOs, Google executives, prime ministers, military leaders, astronauts, all the way down to us humble fodder, the bloggers, the bakers, the Fendi bag makers. Too many gay people to list. Always have been. Always will be. So let us just remember that.
And just as nature dictates that there will always be gay people, it also dictates that Alexander Boot and his po-faced editors are just mere mortals like the rest of us, just less interesting and more sour than most of us.
And in a few years Alexander Boot will be dead, lost, forgotten, his books unread, his Wikipedia page covered in weeds and unvisited.
And one day, as both probability and nature dictate, one of Alexander Boot's great grandchildren will be gay, and they might decide to research their family tree, and they will stumble across his journalistic legacy. And what could have been a happy day, "Look! Josh! Did you know my great-grand grandather was a national journalist!?", instead Boot's horrid stodgy scrawlings will be revealed, and his grandchild will swallow a small gulp of flem, turn to his boyfriend, and whisper "Fuck Josh, look! My great-grandfather was a homophobe..."
Ooh, here's another sexy snap of our friend Alexander Boot:
Now if you spot him in the street you'll be able to go up to him and freak him out. If you're gay then you're not normal remember, so he probably won't be surprised if you start doing some abnormal things, like making yourself sick down his back.
And here are some other Alexanders. Gay ones. Much better ones:
Alexander The Great - I think we all accept that he did more than most.
Alexander McQueen (born Leigh) - one of the greatest British fashion designers to have ever lived, and the official choice of the Royal Family for the wedding dress of our future queen Katherine Middleton.
Nick Alexander - an award-winning novelists. That's right Mr. Boot, this guy's books are actually read by people and win awards.
And finally - Alexander Pettyfer. OK so he's not actually gay, but we can dream can't we, and who knows what goes on on those casting couches...