There is a good follow-up article here as well, in light of the intense discussion around it:
I particularly liked what AVB said:
…Some gay men and lesbians live in monogamous relationships. That is the reality that is rarely highlighted. Whilst I think Andy's orginal article needed some serious editing and a bit more thought the way he communicated what he feels…..it does hightlight an important element of our community…..its diverse in belief, practices and sense of morality. None of us should be automatically put in the 'homosexual lifestyle' box unless we choose to be. Some love it….others can't stand it.
While I think I agree with the sentiment behind the new group, I don't think it's taken quite the right approach on the problem it seeks to help rectify. Many straights already know many gay people who are monogamous, many who have no part in 'the scene', and many who find the idea of sex on a first date to be repulsive. I belong to each of those categories, but I am not sure that trying to band all these people together in a group that specifically exists to counter the existing stereotypes of Oxford St is the right way to bring about change.
The marriage equality movement has, in my opinion, already been fairly successful at highlighting long-term monogamous relationships between gay couples to the rest of the public, spectacles at rallies notwithstanding. If that point needs hammering home further, then I think equal marriage is the avenue to go about it. It's a way that doesn't rub (too many) other gay people the wrong way if they don't think it's for them, and there is already a substantial public platform to build on for furthering the message. Once gay marriage becomes the same non-issue that interracial marriage now is, then issues like a lack of role models should largely fall by the wayside. If kids are growing up knowing that marriage is a normal and very available option for them when they grow up, even if they're gay, then that's the best way to promote monogamy.
Making a group specifically to go against the grain tells the public that the stereotype holds true to such an extent that specific counter-action is needed. You can see how some might see that as a thinly veiled attack on their community, and the diversity of opinions on what is moral and what isn't. Saying that the gay community needs a reputation overhaul is not what many in that community are going to want to hear, and it is going to create divides. We should instead be highlighting diversity, and I don't think he's done a great job at that.
I am glad to see the topic being discussed but wow, I wish he'd gone about it a different way. The approach needs more thought, and much more tact.