Freedom of speech

My Twitter feed blew up over the weekend due to some ridiculous comments made by Dolce and Gabbana regarding IVF treatment for same sex couples.

The two fashion designers labelled children that come from IVF treatment as synthetic, and went on to say that they do not believe in same-sex fertility treatment because children should be raised with both a mother and a father. That children should not be raised without a mother, because that’s the most important thing.

They’re entitled to their opinion, as misguided as I think it is.

However, predictably, being public figures, their comments hit the mainstream pretty quickly, and offended a fair number of people. Including Elton John, who saw fit to fire back. Good for him.

What’s bugging me about the whole thing is that a lot of D&G fangirls are coming out and crying “freedom of speech!”, and telling Elton John he should just shut up and not criticize Dolce and Gabbana for their comments.

But here’s the thing kiddies – that whole “freedom of speech” thing you’re clinging to? That goes both ways.

Dolce and Gabbana are entitled to air their opinion.

Elton John is entitled to criticize them for it.

People are entitled to say stupid things. Others are entitled to call them out on their stupidity.

Freedom of speech is a wonderful thing, but just remember while you’re entitled to that freedom, so is everyone else.

Do I think Dolce and Gabbana are wrong? I think their heart is probably in the right place (maybe? I hope?), but their comments are a long way off the mark.

I was raised in a traditional family with both my parents. I think in hindsight (the kind that only comes with growing up and becoming an adult), my parents would have been better off getting a divorce, and my brother and I both living with our father. Not our mother (which despite Dolce and Gabbana’s opinion, it was far more cruel on my brother and I to be raised by her than it would have been for us to have been raised without her). We would have been even better off being raised by two same-sex partners who genuinely wanted kids, than by our biological parents who reminded us almost daily that we were unwanted accidents.

Freedom of speech? Yeah, I’m all for it. You get to say your stupid things, and I get to call you out on it. Fun game, isn’t it?

Edited to add: apparently now they’ve called Elton John a fascist because he’s “oppressing them”. No, he’s not. Just as D&G are exercising their right to free speech, so is Elton John.

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