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article imageGeorge Michael attacks soap gay storyline for scaring youngsters

By Andrew John     Nov 11, 2011 in Entertainment
Singer-songwriter and ex-Wham! star George Michael has criticised one of the UK’s best-loved soap operas for its handling of a gay relationship between a married Muslim and his partner.
Viewers have for months been watching the ongoing strife concerning Syed Masood (Marc Elliott) and Christian Clarke (John Partridge) in BBC1’s EastEnders.
Masood, although gay, got married to Amira Shah (Preeya Kalidas), who has recently returned to the four-nights-a-week soap after she and her husband split and he and Clarke set up home together.
Added to the mix recently has been 15-year-old Ben Mitchell (Joshua Pascoe), who has a crush on Clarke and has just accused the older man of touching him inappropriately (viewers knew this not to be the case, and the youngster has apologised to Clarke – but not before Mitchell’s thuggish father, Phil, had attacked Clarke with a baseball bat in an episode this week).
But George Michael has used his Twitter account to say that the storyline is “scaring the shit out of children.”
The gay star also said: “The relationship between Syed and Christian is the most insulting piece of bullshit on British television right now.
“Insulting to the gay community, insulting to the Muslim community, and in the meantime, terrifying every gay child that is struggling to come to terms with their sexuality, and the prospect of coming out to their family, whatever their religion.
Accused of child molestation
“So far, Christian has been beaten up three times that I can remember, and is now accused of child molestation. Syed has been disowned [by his Muslim family] and is now mistreating his partner shamelessly, presumably because he is now a confused bisexual after all.
“Total f*****g bullshit.”
Pink News says of the affair:
Michael described modern soap operas as being hugely influential in society, with a power to positively reflect “race and integration”.
He praised the actors, John Partridge and Marc Elliott, who portray an openly gay man and a Muslim who struggled to come to terms with his sexuality, eventually leaving his wife.
“Life in London is a wonderful thing for so many gay and lesbian people these days,” says Michael, “and I know that there are gay people involved in the writing of the show; but they really need to rethink their approach to gay ‘issues’. They are scaring the shit out of children everywhere.”
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