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TERROR!ST
2012

“If you want a lover I'll do anything you ask me to. And if you want another kind of love I'll wear a mask for you.”
– Leonard Cohen

“Hit me with your rhythm stick.”
– Ian Drury and the Blockheads

I'll do just about anything if I'm wearing a mask. Anonymity can be very liberating. Just ask anyone who's encountered a glory hole (or a confessional). Masks can come in many forms: balaclavas, beards, burkhas, hairpieces, harnesses, hoodies, robes, rhetoric, religion.

The “War on Terror” may have abated, but the war on sexuality continues under the guise of “morality”. What motivates most oppressors is their own fear. Ironically it's their favourite tool with which to oppress. The righteous, when fully engorged, can cast a long shadow.

In 2007 the president of Iran declared that, “homosexuality does not exist in Iran”. That same year four men were sentenced to be hanged there for sodomy. In 2011 David Kato, a Ugandan teacher and LGBTQ activist was murdered because of his sexual orientation. A Ugandan newspaper had printed a photo of him and a number of other queer activists along with their addresses under the headline: “Hang Them”. In October, 2012, 15 year old Jamie Hubley from Ottawa, committed suicide after years of relentless bullying. Also in 2012, the Ontario Catholic School Board tried to deny students the right to use the term Gay/Straight Alliance for LGBTQ support groups in their schools. The students won.

The dictionary defines “Terrorism” as “the use of violence and intimidation in the pursuit of political aims”. Well countless countries around the world (and a few religions too) are waging a war of terror on queers that is nothing short of genocide. “TERROR!ST is the antithesis of a white flag. It's a rainbow missive to the masses: “Rise up against the demonization of sex!”

Hand stitched felt on canvas
5' X 10.5'