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Josh Rivers: Gay Times editor’s only crime was to be unfunny

by | 16th, November 2017

Josh Rivers Gay Times bigot tweets

 

Today’s hate figure is Josh Rovers, editor of Gay Times magazine, now suspended for tweeting things between 2010 and 2015.  Examples of Rivers’ tweets are many. One mocked women and the fat:

“I’ve just seen a girl in the tightest white tank & lord help me if she’s not pregnant, she should be killed. #gross.”

And, of course, there’s always the nastiness about Jews:

josh-rivers-jews are gross

And:

“I wonder if they cast that guy as ‘The Jew’ because of that fucking ridiculously larger honker of a nose. It must be prosthetic. Must be.”

In the Guardian LGBTQ rights campaigner Peter Tatchell is aghast: “His history of grossly offensive tweets is such a letdown. It undermines whatever good he was planning to achieve in the magazine.” Looks like equality rules: LGBT people can be every bit as nasty as the rest of us. Who knew?

Want some more examples of Rivers’ tweets? Of course you do. Here goes:

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

Josh Rivers Gay Times tweets

 

By way of background, it turns out that Rivers is not a person: he’s a walking box-ticking exercise. The Guardian notes that Rivers “is the first BME editor of a gay men’s magazine, and took on the role with a mandate to promote inclusivity and diversity.” And you thought he was just the best person for the job on account of his editing abilities and cutting-edge wit.

Outed and suspended from the post he only got in October, Rivers has issued an apology, the language of which might be a better reason than the lame tweets to dislike him:

 

 

The apology is terrific, isn’t it. It’s not about you, it’s about him. Josh, an arch narcissist, is now on a therapeutic journey, taking “steps” to self-discover a better him, to be the kind of wonderful person he truly is and knows he is. After guffing about “pivoting” and “empowering”, Rivers – he used to work in marketing, natch. – co-opts us all into his ugliness, hoping that “we” can “grow”, “heal” and move “forward”. It’s a journey. Get on the bus. You too, fatso.

But I’ll pass. I’m okay, Josh. You’re the berk, not me, the dick who thought it clever to make jokes about Jews, women, Asians and pretty much anyone not just like you.

Rivers’ sentiments expressed in his tweets are pathetic, puerile and horribly unfunny. He appears to be aiming at waspish humour, a snarky, offensive, live-it-loud gay laugh-in where anything goes. He fails miserably. Josh Rivers is not like his namesake Joan Rivers, the caustic, tough-talking American who wielded a comic stiletto with gusto and precision. Josh’s attempts at humour are every bit as wet as his name suggests. And he’s a fool. Rather than explaining it all as misplaced banter, stupidity, letting off steam and the result of his over-arching vanity, Rivers tells us that the tweets actually explain him, each presenting an insight into his mind. To wit, he was a racist, sexist, anti-Semitic misogynist. Those tweets weren’t just idiotic. They really meant something.

Let’s not trivialise Rivers’ tweets, but remind ourselves that Rivers has committed no crime. He’s apologised and that should be an end to the matter. He can hold the most abhorrent views on Jews, women, Asians and more but if he keeps them to himself, or else voices them to an audience more sympathetic to his prejudices – just as many of us have down in the privacy of our own homes and amongst friends – I’m fine with it. Shocked? Offended? “Oh, grow up!” as the aforesaid Joan advised.

Josh Rivers’ offence wasn’t to hold childish and nasty views; it was to voice them in the wrong context. Now, back to work. But time for a quick survey: anyone out there actually read Gay Times?



Posted: 16th, November 2017 | In: Key Posts, News Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink